3 Important Considerations Before Packing Up Your Boat for the Winter
There is a lot of work to be done before packing up your watercraft for the winter months, such as performing usual maintenance and properly storing your boat.
As you pack your boat up for the off-season, keep these three insurance considerations in mind:
1. Is your boat properly winterized?
If your boat is damaged due to a lack of or poorly completed winterization, your insurance policy may not cover the damage.
Many insurance companies will not offer coverage, specifically for damage caused by freezing, if you forgo the appropriate winterizing. This is because these damages could have been prevented with the appropriate care.
Winterizing your boat includes, but is not limited to:
- performing a thorough clean to keep critters out and prevent mould or rust;
- draining all water to prevent freezing, including freshwater plumbing systems like sinks or tanks;
- looking for damage and repairing if needed, and;
- removing your fully charged battery to preserve battery capacity and prevent freezing.
Properly storing your watercraft for the winter months can save you a big headache come next boating season. Always check your owners’ manual for manufacturer recommendations on winterizing your specific boat and motor.
Working with a trusted professional can also give you peace of mind that your boat is properly winterized.
2. Are you storing your boat at home?
If you are storing your boat at home, it is important that you have the appropriate safety and risk mitigation measures in place. This could include installing security cameras or alarms, ensuring that your watercraft is fully sheltered from the elements, and keeping doors locked to prevent someone from injuring themselves.
Despite your best efforts, if something were to happen, your home insurance might extend to your boat – depending on your specific policy. However, when you take into consideration the cost to repair or replace your boat, your home insurance may not offer enough coverage. We recommend keeping your boat insurance policy in the off-season.
3. Does your insurance policy cover you in the off-season?
Some boat owners make the choice not to insure their watercraft during the winter in order to save money. This is not recommended as it is still very important to make sure that your boat has the appropriate coverage, even in the off-season.
While not in use, your boat is still susceptible to risks such as fire, theft or an accident that leads to injury.
A broker can help advise you on how to save money on your boat insurance – such as increasing your deductible – without losing valuable coverage during the off-season.
Our team can help you navigate your boat insurance policy. Contact our experienced brokers today.