Prepping Your Boat and RV for Summer Fun

April 24, 2015


covered boats stored in storage yard

As the weather warms up, owners of RVs and boats everywhere are rejoicing! It’s finally time to get the boat or RV out of Northwest Self Storage in Hillsboro and get ready for fun in the sun, whether that be summer road trips through Oregon or a cruise on Henry Hagg Lake. As an RV or boat owner, you know that preparing your vehicle for storage facilities in Hillsboro, Oregon requires certain tasks – and so does taking it out! Follow this de-wintering checklist to ensure that your RV or boat is in tip-top shape, and get ready to hit the road – or water – running!

Getting Your Boat Prepped for the Water

  • Give your boat a thorough once over. Clean the exterior and the interior, including running the vacuum and power washing the bottom. Apply a coat of wax to protect the boat’s surface from UV rays. Repair any small dings or scratches.
  • Electrical Components. Inspect your boat’s electronics for corrosion; use a wire brush to eliminate corrosion or replace components. Don’t forget to check your battery to see if it still holds a charge.
  • Belts, Hoses and Cables. Many belts, hoses and cables are made of rubber, which can crack over time. Inspect these parts for cracking and swelling and replace as needed. Make sure that the belts are tight.
  • Fuel System. Examine the fuel system for leaks, and look for visible damage to the fuel lines. These may be cracked or brittle, and need to be replaced. Make sure that the connection is secure to prevent leaks.
  • Fluid Levels. Check the fluid levels for oil, power steering and coolant. Change out your fluids if they weren’t changed when the boat was put in storage.
  • Safety Gear. Lastly, have a variety of life vests on board, as well as first aid kits, flares and a fire extinguisher.

De-Winterizing the Family RV

  • Inspection from the outside in. Check the exterior of the RV for any damage and give it a thorough wash. Check the tire inflation pressure and make sure your tires are still in good condition; inspect for damage like premature cracks. Look for signs of animal damage or leaks in the interior, as well as holes. You should have left your fridge cracked to avoid rotting smells, but wipe out your fridge with disinfectant anyway.
  • Reinstall the battery. The first order of business is re-installing the battery, which you should have removed when you placed your RV in storage. Top off the fluid, charge the battery and reconnect it. You can do a quick test to see if it’s working by turning on the lights.
  • Flushing the fluids. Flushing your plumbing system is essential to getting all the antifreeze out of the system. The best way to do this is to take your RV to a water hook-up area so you can dispose of these chemicals down the correct drain. While flushing the plumbing system, run the water pump and open all the faucets in the RV. Allow the water to flow until it runs clear. Don’t forget the water in the toilet and the shower as well.
  • Check the electrical systems. Test the electrical systems throughout the RV. This includes everything from appliances to lights. Check the batteries in your small appliances, and ensure that all the interior and exterior lights are working.
  • Take it for a test drive. After performing any necessary maintenance (and the above tips), it’s important to take your RV for a short test drive. Take a 10 to 20 mile trip and note anything unusual.

The de-winterizing care can vary depending on the location of your vehicle and the pre-storage preparation. Follow our basic tips and get ready to enjoy your favorite summer recreation. And remember, Northwest Self Storage in Hillsboro offers both indoor and outdoor spaces for RVs and boats. If you need self storage in Hillsboro, contact Northwest Self Storage today!

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