Tips for preparing your yacht for winter
Denis Korablev
  • 03.12.2019
  • 386

Tips for preparing your yacht for winter

Questions about how to properly prepare a yacht for wintering periodically appear on the pages of thematic forums and this topic will remain relevant for many years to come. It may seem strange, but preparation of the vessel for the next season begins with the correct completion of the current.

Mothballing of the vessel may include work on lifting the vessel out of the water, removing contaminants, changing the oil in the engine, replacing the oil and fuel filter elements, draining water from the water supply and sewerage system, removing and charging the battery with its subsequent storage, etc. ... It is necessary to put in order the systems and components of the yacht in order to protect them from corrosion and to exclude damage to the pipelines due to freezing of liquids in them.

The best place for your yacht in winter is a heated space, but a shrink wrap option could be considered to help the technique withstand seasonal temperature fluctuations, snow and ice. With the use of heat-shrinkable film, it becomes possible to protect both the entire hull of the ship and its individual units and equipment elements, for example, masts, engine or rigging.

Engine conservation

Owners of motor yachts should pay special attention to the power plant. Caring for the engine consists in draining the used oil (if there are metal particles in it, this is a reason to think about possible upcoming repairs), replacing filters, cleaning the main components from external contamination, treating parts of the cylinder-piston group with special preservatives to prevent their corrosion. Instead of water, propylene glycol or automobile antifreeze is poured into the cooling system, the fuel tanks are filled completely with the addition of a fuel stabilizer. Remember: The yacht must winter with either completely empty or full fuel tanks.

Batteries are removed from the power plant, charged and left in a heated room to wait for the next season (where they are recharged once a month). Note that most of the power plant conservation operations can be performed by anyone who is familiar with domestic technology. If this is an outboard motor, you can limit yourself to changing the oil in the gearbox, removing residual water from the cooling system, spraying an anti-corrosion mixture into the cylinders, and removing the battery. The propellers are removed and the shafts are greased. The controls are also lubricated - steering rods, etc. The plugs are unscrewed and cleaned, the tips of the reverse and "gas" rods are checked for cracks and other defects. Fuel filters are replaced, water is drained from sedimentation tanks.

Caring for Accessories

Additional equipment also needs to be checked and inspected: it is necessary to attend to the condition of the anchor winches, check the thrusters, clean the anchor chain box, remove and blow out the gauge log to prevent water accumulation in the pipes, clean the fish tanks, inspect the tents and, if necessary, repair them in winter, wash the tender boat to remove the smell of fish, etc.


You should also take care of the interior so that in spring it would be pleasant to step on board the yacht and be able to relax in comfortable conditions. The cabin, decks, latrines and galley are cleaned with detergents, carpets are vacuum cleaned, upholstery is treated with leather conditioner and the drinking tank is drained. Cabinet doors and locker lids open slightly for air ventilation, in poorly ventilated spaces it is recommended to use silica gel cloth bags. To exclude the possibility of fungus development, all removable fabric parts (pillows, awning elements) must be stored in a warm and dry room. Also, all electronics, clothing, personal belongings, towels, removable rugs and bedding must be removed in the heated room. The refrigerator needs to be cleaned, then the door must be locked ajar so that it does not get moldy inside.

Sails, masts, rigging

A very important step in the conservation of sailing yachts, especially for rented yachts, is the sail maintenance phase , masts and rigging. The sails are cleaned and washed, and if there are signs of mold or mildew development, then the fabric is treated with bleach. Dry the sail before storing it. It is recommended to rinse the rigging elements with water, and the threaded connections should be removed from rust and dirt and lubricated. It is recommended to treat aluminum parts and stainless ropes with a special preservative. Mooring and anchor lines should be inspected, rinsed and dried. The anchor chain is dismantled, washed with tap water, dried and stored in a dry, ventilated place. The masts and spars must be removed and stored in a lying position, on props. The metal spar is washed, dried and coated with paraffin wax. Wooden masts should be checked for fungus and painted and varnished where necessary.

Electrical equipment

Electrical equipment must be fully functional, long parking on the street can lead to rust on the contacts and terminals. It is worth checking the serviceability of the navigation and parking lights, the monitors of echo sounders and navigators should be dismantled from the yacht in order to prevent them from being stolen. Blown fuses and bulbs must be replaced.

If you have a plastic yacht, its safe storage is possible only in a dry and warm boathouse, while a six-month wintering of a medium-sized vessel can cost several hundred thousand rubles. Note that storage prices abroad are noticeably lower, so many people prefer to send yachts for the winter to foreign ports.

In order for the technique to further delight you with impeccable work, you should entrust the preservation of the yacht to the professionals of the company engaged in this field. Still, you can ignore something on your own, overlook some moments altogether, and the services of certified specialists with specialized education and relevant experience will allow you to preserve all the characteristics of the yacht. Remember that mistakes during the conservation of the yacht can result in costly repairs in the future. Happy winter storage and a great start to the new season!