How hard is it to winterize a boat with an outboard motor? I'm wondering if I should winterize my boat or if I should take it to the dealer. Any advice is appreciated.
Winterizing a boat is actually very easy as long as you have the right tools. I had to DIY make a funnel with a hose and an outboard attachment to do mine but that was the hardest part. The rest is just spraying some sprays, disconnecting a few things and flushing the fluids. A dealer usually charges quite a bit to winterize a boat. On top of that they are usually swamped come boat winterization season with shrink-wrapping and winterizing boats that you may have to wait a week or two at the least.
@Ryan_G it's actually really easy to do. Check out this West Advisor article on winterizing your outboard motor. West Marine experts walk you through every step and explain the winterizing process in detail. It will definitely be a little cheaper to winterize your boat yourself but you'll really notice savings if you do it every year moving forward. I've got the winterization process down to about 25-30 minutes on my boat.
@Ryan_G If you have some spare time and want to save a little cash, winterizing your outboard is really easy. If you have a single outboard, Boat winterizing costs might range between 200-400 dollars (not including shrink wrapping). If you have twin or more outboards the price goes up from there. Aside from the cost of winterizing a boat at a dealer or boat mechanic, you have to consider the time and effort. Right now, shops are filling up fast with winterizing requests and your boat may sit a few weeks before being being serviced. Doing it yourself should take roughly 30 minutes per outboard.
DIY boat winterization (assuming you have no equipment currently) is going to cost about $100-150. The benefits are having it done in a timely manner, saving money and knowing that everything was done to your satisfaction. The return on investment will benefit you after the first year or two and the cost will go down year two. A few tips to save some money are to buy concentrated marine antifreeze in the off season. Concentrate is much cheaper and you'll save a few dollars in the off season and avoid not being able to find any when stores sell out in October and November.
So weigh these options and decide if your time and money is worth paying someone else to do it or saving some time and learning a little more about your boat by doing it yourself. Best of luck in whatever you decide. If you have a marina or a shop winterize your boat, make sure to schedule it sooner than later.
i have a 41’ concord with 2 Detroit 4-71’s and onan generator. We leave it in the water and this year I’m dry docking for upgrades and repairs. I’ve never had to winterize these motors as it stayed in the water and had power and heat. Likely can find winterizing tips on YouTube guys there’s a plethora of info out there. Enjoy!
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