HOW TO PREVENT FROST DAMAGE TO YOUR YACHT
Winterize your yacht for both outdoor and indoor storage
The next winter is just around the corner. What about your yacht? Is it fit for the cold season?
As soon as temperatures drop below zero, the risk of frost damage increases – be it in outdoor or indoor storage. Take precautions now to avoid just that.
With our tips and advice, you will be able to winterize your yacht and, at the same time, perfectly prepare it for the next season already.
Our recommendation: Simply print out our checklist (download here) and tick off the items important/applicable to you. This way you make sure that you haven't missed anything.
BASIC WINTER PREPARATIONS
- Drain and clean water tank to prevent damage from freezing (and therefore expanding) water.
- Drain boiler and outdoor shower.
- IMPORTANT: Drain valves on tank and pump.
- Drain and clean waste tank.
- Remove or set up cushions and mattresses to prevent moisture damage such as mould or mildew stains.
- Remove all gas bottles/tanks and ensure proper winter storage.
MAKING THE YACHT TECHNICALLY WINTERPROOF
- IMPORTANT: Fill up diesel tanks completely.
(Explanation: Do not empty diesel tanks under any circumstances, as condensation will build up over the winter and deposit on the surface once the tanks are refilled – furthermore, we recommend refraining from the use of additives, as they may cause contamination/impurities in the inlets/outlets.)
- Change engine oil and oil filter.
- Check engine and make it winter-proof with anti-freeze, if required.
- Check and replace impeller in case it shows any signs of damage.
- Check air filter for contamination and clean it.
- Check V-belt and replace it in case it shows tears and/or frays.
- Charge or disconnect and charge battery – store battery in a warm, dry place.
IMPORTANT: Lithium-ion batteries will have to be removed and stored separately by all means due to potential fire hazard and insurance protection reasons.
- Replace sacrificial anodes, if required.
WINTERIZING THE YACHT DECK AND HULL
- Drain bilge.
- Clean and lubricate winches.
- Remove shells/barnacles and algae from hull, e.g. with a high-pressure cleaner.
- Masts: Fill masts which are open at the bottom with robust material (e.g. plastic tarpaulins) to prevent animal nesting.
- Clean anchor chain and anchor locker from salt residues and other contamination.
- Check chain, swivel shackle, and safety line.
- Clean and lubricate anchor windlass/winch.
- Check and clean propeller(s).
- Renew underwater coating, if required, ideally with an appropriate antifouling application.
- Ensure dry storage of sails and ropes/rigging.
- During winter preparations in dry weather, leave hatches and doors open for aeration/ventilation.
- Finally, cover yacht with an appropriate protective tarpaulin.
Are there any other points that we have not mentioned here, which you may deem interesting or important though? Write us an e-mail – it will be our pleasure to address the requested topics and supplement our article/list accordingly.