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Boat maintenance daily, weekly and monthly

Boat maintenance daily, weekly and monthly

on November 21, 2021

Boat maintenance tasks can be overwhelming, follow our boat maintenance tips, and a basic boat maintenance checklist, making maintenance easy for all boat owners!

Boat maintenance daily, weekly and monthly



Boat Maintenance

Boat maintenance is essential; if not well maintained, it will cause problems. The basics of maintenance care remain the same whether your boat is in saltwater or freshwater.

The only difference will be the regularity and intensity of maintenance and, of course, the products you use. Be the responsible boater and take care of your boat!

Boating season is fun, maintenance work, on the other hand, is not so much fun, but vital. A visual inspection of your boat is required after every boat, just to make sure all is good after a great day out boating!

It is best to follow a boat maintenance checklist, it makes your life easier, and this way you will not forget about some important maintenance checks.

Maintenance after every boat trip.

  • Flush the engine after every trip; whether in saltwater or freshwater, you need to flush it. 
  • Drain the remaining water after you have flushed the engine.
  • Clean your boat with fresh water. It is crucial to clean your boat within 24 hours if it was in saltwater.
  • Clean freshwater tanks and fill the water tank with fresh water for your next trip.

 cleaning boat

How to flush an outboard motor (Check your user manual for specific instructions)

There are different types of flushing systems: Built-In Flush Connection, Using Flush Muffs, and Flushing Bags.

Built-In Flush Connection

Most outboards have a built-in flush connection. The built-in flush connection uses a snap fitting adapter or a threaded fitting to connect the motor to a garden hose; after connecting the hose, let the water run for about 10 minutes. With the built-in flush connection, you can flush the outboards without starting the motor. Check your user manual for specific instructions. 

Flush Muffs – Check your user manual for specific instructions.

  • Connect the water hose to the flush muffs.
  • Place the “flush muffs” over the water inlet vents. Seal the water inlet with duct tape if not covered by the muff.
  • Turn on the water supply.
  • Ensure the muffs stay in place; Make sure muffs do not move from vents while the engine is running.
  • Start the engine, run the engine in neutral so that the propeller does not turn.
  • Once you start the engine/motor, you should see water flowing out of the tell-tale this indicates that the water is pumping thru the motor.
  • Let the engine run for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Don’t leave the motor unattended while flushing.
  • If the muffs fall off, switch off the engine immediately.
  • Turn the engine off before you turn off the water supply.
  • Remove the propeller as a safety precaution; this is preferred before you start flushing.

Flushing Bags or Buckets

  • Remove the propeller
  • Fit the flushing bag around the gear case and fill it with water to cover the cooling water inlets.
  • Start the motor; it will pump water from this reservoir; the hose will maintain the water level.
  • Make sure water is flowing from the tell-tale.
  • There is a drain plug on the flushing bag for easy emptying after you are done. 

 marine diesel engine, power trim,  marine sysem

If you leave your boat standing in the Marina, Check the following at least once a month or three months. Clean and add protectants if necessary.

Cleaning Products

Protectant products

  • Engine(s) – Run the engine regularly as the engine needs to run often. Change the fluids: change the engine oils, filters, and fuel filters once a year or every 100 hours of engine runtime.
  • Check the bilges
  • The boat’s hull (bottom) and topsides
  • Electric systems & electrical components
  • Batteries 
  • Plumbing and HVAC systems (in larger boats)
  • Moving parts (like hinges, tracks, and zippers)
  • Canvass and upholstery: Canvas refers to materials and substrates used in the fabrication of covers, tarps, sunshades, etc.
  • Check spark plugs and replace them if needed.
  • Regularly check for water in the fuel.
  • Check the fuel lines for cracks and wear.
  • Propeller and engine belts check for damages and replace if needed.
  • Check fuel hoses, if they are damaged replace them.
  • Check the fuel primer bulb for cracks.
  • Inspect clamps for rust.
  • The tank vent ensures it is clear, with no blockages.
  • The hull of a boat must get cleaned every 12 weeks (3 Months) to avoid fouling building up.
  • Clean exterior once a month
  • Pump out waste tank once a month


 buffing a boat

Living on your boat and enjoying the travels on the ocean, maintenance is a daily activity and essential to your vessel.

Check freshwater tanks daily; if your water is running low, be sure to visit the marina and fill it up.

Some vessels, usually bigger vessels, have a desalination plant. The purpose of this Desalination plant is to convert salt water to freshwater, so there is frequently fresh water on board, making daily cleaning easy and comfortable. Whenever you need to fill your fresh water tank, switch on the desalination plant to do the work.


Maintenance for Desalination plant: (Check user m annual for specific instructions)

  1. Flush system after every use. (Using the freshwater you just created)
  2. Strainer check and clean every five days.
  3. Replace pump filters every 3 to 6 months
  4. Active carbon filters replace every 6 Months


Daily and Weekly Maintenance

Daily cleaning is required, and apply protectants or every two weeks for high humid areas and sunny days on the ocean.

  • Clean the boat daily; you can use a vinegar-water solution to save on cost. 
  • Clean exterior daily
  • Clean upholstery daily and apply protectant weekly.
  • Clean windows and apply sun protectants; if you are in an area where the heat is extreme, be sure to use sun-protected weekly. 
  • If your boat has any form of woodwork, regular cleaning using wood products and wood protectants is required.
  • Check propeller and shaft for damages and clean weekly
  • Clean all pipes regularly with “oxalic acid,” a white powder that works for rust. From the rust on the deck to all your tools, this is a miracle worker for all rust.
  • Salt pipes – clean once a year with muriatic acid. Pump into pipes if the pipes are old replace them.
  • It would be best if you used everything on your boat every day. Open and close the doors; for example, start the engine every day, run water systems daily, run pumps daily.
  • Fiberglass boats have a gel that protects the boat from saltwater and different weather conditions. The gel on the fiberglass gives it a glossy look; you will notice a change of appearance when the gel coat is wearing off; it becomes chalky; wax or polish your boat at least once a year with gel protectant.


High Humid areas cause mold build-up, and to assist with this problem, you need: 

  1. Air-Flow moisture barrier: for use on the mattress and cushions.
  2. Dehumidifier: needs maintenance to clean the reservoir and filters regularly with an antimicrobial solution.
  3. Air-dryer: an inexpensive and effective way to fight moisture problems, cold drafts, and corrosion. The Davis air dryer is designed to run 24 hours daily.


Maintenance tasks you should check up on when heading out onto the ocean.

  • Your oil filter always is sure to check your oil filter to ensure there is enough oil and never let your boat stand for months on end with a dirty oil filter as this can have an expensive outcome to repair.
  • Electrical system, your electrical system runs your entire boat, it can be very dangerous if you do not check up on this and faults pop up when you are out at sea with no control over your boat.
  • Type of engine and fuel system, for example, a diesel engine always be sure to check the engine type if you ever put petrol in a diesel engine the damage to your boat can be very severe. Your fuel system should always be in a good functioning condition, if not there is a possibility of getting stuck at sea with no fuel as you will not have any warning or indication. Be sure to check fuel filters and ensure that it is in well and working condition before going out onto the ocean. Always check for fuel leaks, not only is it bad for the environment but it can have serious and dangerous consequences.
  • Water pump, always check the water pump and ensure it is filled. A water pump is what cools your boat down when it overheats, engine maintenance is very important, and checking your water pump is a very crucial part of your engine maintenance.
  • Safety equipment and your first aid kit should always be checked before each boat outing your safety gear is the last resort to save your life in a serious boat malfunction.

water pump impeller, engine mounts, bilge pump


Boat maintenance, maintain your boat with Marine Supplies US the best boat products for you, just one click away! Best online marine store



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