5 Basic Maintenance Skills Every Sailor Should Know


The fun of riding on your boat for the holidays is exciting and thrilling. You have the freedom to ride the waters to your desired destination and at your own pace. It’s easy for you to invite friends in and enjoy an entertaining ride.

But owning a boat is one thing, and like everything else, taking care of your boat is even more critical. Boat maintenance skills are among the essential boating skills every sailor must have to ensure you have your boat serving you long enough.

Taking simple actions yourself will ensure your boat is adequately taken care of, and that you’re not always going to the maintenance technician. This way, you have yourself a healthy boat, while saving cost. Some of the tips we have listed here will guide you on some of the things you can do to take care of your boat.

Never Leave a Moisture

It doesn’t matter what kind it is, if it’s moisture, wipe it off as soon as you can. Keep a couple of towels handy, and keep your boat dry always. It might seem like a huge task going round and looking for what to wipe, but it’s completely worth it.

It doesn’t matter if you’re sailing or you just pulled out of the water, but most importantly, run a double check when your boat is out of the seas. It’s essential to keep the boat dry after use to keep it safe from waterline stain.

Either way, all types of moisture are not right for your boat when they stay there for long. Saltwater will corrode your boat components.

Take Care of Your Engine

Every machinery that runs on an engine must be taken care of, so it can serve a long time. The most important aspect of caring for your engine is taking care of its oiling system to ensure the engine doesn’t suffer from friction.

Like your vehicle engine, your boat requires that the oil be changed frequently. The most comfortable alternative is to schedule a specific time for reoiling your boat’s engine and sticking with your schedule. Beyond just changing oil, you have to ensure the quality you use.

It’s important to mention here that changing engine oil for a boat isn’t as straight forward as with a car, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do it. You’ll require an oil extractor pump, oil wrench, and some time and patience to clean up the oil compartment. With repeated practice, it’ll become a part of you and something you can quickly achieve.

Your Batteries Must Remain Charged

When you’re not using your boat, don’t just leave your batteries lying and wasting there. Take it out, clean it up, oil the bolts and metal terminals, and store them safely somewhere you can get them again the next time you need them.

Keep a multimeter handy. It’s a vital tool that helps you with most of your electrical tasks. Use your multimeter to determine the voltage of your batteries, ensure they have sufficient charge, understand the effects of temperature on them, and be sure of where you’re storing them.

Your multimeter goes beyond a handy tool just for checking batteries. It can provide information as detailed as which light bulb no longer works in your boat, and to troubleshoot any electrical fault. Follow the manufacturer’s guide to make use of one.

Make Others Gaze at Your Propeller

You can achieve a clean and shiny propeller that’ll make others gaze, even after a full season in the water. Using and leaving your propeller to lie on its own without some form of specialized care will leave it barnacle ridden and disgusting.

Using egg whites on your propeller does all the magic. It leaves your propellers shinny and attention-drawing even after your boat has spent a full season in water, and racking up all the saltwater.

For maximum effect, when you have your boat out of the water, maybe when you have it antifouled, get to work and paint your coat of egg whites over the propeller. You may have to repeat as much as four times to achieve the desired effect.

Those Squeaky Floors

Have you ever wanted to grab some water late at night, while sleeping over in the boat, but the corridor wooden flooring made that tremendous noise that made you wonder? Yes, the floor just shifted and made that noise.

Could be the bolt holding it just loosened from the nut, or the wood has eaten off some of its particles. Use candle wax or powder to fix this, if it’s only the holding nails. Place candle wax or dust at the under of your floorboard.

But if the wood has to be changed, and you intend to do it yourself, for instance, the first place to start is getting quality wood, and the right equipment for working the wood. Table saws with more teeth are stronger than most other types of saw and will help make your job faster and easier.


With owning a property as admirable as a boat, comes the responsibility of taking adequate care if it. And to achieve that, little vital details you don’t overlook will help ensure the health and sustainability of your boat. Do the right things when you have to do them, and you’ll be saving yourself some extra cost of having to call in the mechanic.

Share this post