Yes, we know it’s only August, which often has some of the hottest days of summer. But before you know it, fall and winter will take over and you’ll have to stop your boating for the year. While Ontario has some beautiful boating months, there’s no doubt that winters can be brutal and the lakes themselves tell you that you’re not going to be using your boat during certain months of the year. “Sorry, I’m frozen. Come back next spring.”
Since you won’t be using your boat year-round, you’ll need to take steps to winterize your boat trailer when you’re done boating for the season. Yes, it can difficult to know when you’re done boating, because you probably want to imagine just one more nice weekend on which you can get out on the water. But when you know you’re done, here are some tips for winterizing your trailer, whether it’s a large boat trailer or a small one.
Dry Out The Lights
Even if certain parts of your lights are waterproof, you don’t want to leave water in there for long if the seals have worn. Take the covers off the lights and dry out everything inside. If you leave water in there and it freezes, you could end up having to replace some parts unnecessarily when spring rolls around. Spray some moisture repellent in the light sockets.
Check your light seals as well and replace if necessary. While you might think that this step can wait until spring, you don’t want the snow and sleet of winter to get into your lights. While you might remember to check them every time you get home from boating, you’re not going to remember to check them after every snow.
Inspect The Hardware
You should be inspecting the hardware on your boat every time you take it out, but before you put it away for the winter you should perform a more thorough inspection. This includes the winch, bunks or rollers, and wiring throughout the boat trailer.
Why do this now instead of when spring gets here? Most people get anxious to get out on the water the first time, and they will often be so excited that they’ll just ignore any problems that existed when they put the trailer away for the winter. By dealing with problems now, you’ll be sure to have it done and have to do less to get the trailer ready come spring.
Check The Tires and Take Them In
Your tires go through a lot as they carry the full weight of your boat and boat trailer. And because many of our customers take their tires on less-than-ideal roads (paved and otherwise), the tires require a bit more attention. If you see any abnormal wear, you’ll need to replace them before spring. You don’t want flat tires to create any bent rim problems with the wheels themselves if the weight of the boat presses down all winter.
If you’re keeping the same tires, the best thing to do is to put your boat trailer up on blocks and put the tires/wheels in the garage all winter. This will lengthen the life of the tires and prevent uneven wear due to the weather.
Cover Your Boat
When you cover your boat, something wonderful happens: you cover your boat trailer as well! Make sure to have a boat cover that protects both the boat and the trailer, and tie it down properly with straps so that the snow and rain don’t pool and damage your equipment.
It’s Not Winter Yet!
While you might have to plan for winter, it’s not winter yet! Get your boat out on the water as much as you can, and if you need a new boat trailer either now or next spring we look forward to seeing you at LoadRite Canada. Visit our Monkland or Innisfil yards today!