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Old 03-14-2019, 05:28 PM   #1
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Preseason Boat Inspection Guide

I got the following list of items to check before you start boating this season from my rep at Bristol Insurance. If you can think of things to add please don't hesitate. Thanks to Fred Kempe of Bristol Insurance Group for providing this list.

Preseason Inspection Guide
Batteries
∑ Fluid level correct?
∑ Batteries age or condition suggests its time for a replacement?
∑ Batteries secured against movement.
∑ Batteries in proper boxes with covers.
∑ Supply of distilled water on board to refill batteries as needed.
Plumbing
∑ Check through hull for free operation, corrosion.
∑ Through hulls double clamped below water line, and elsewhere where possible
∑ Bilge pumps, confirm operation of float switches.
∑ Manual bilge pumps checked for operation.
∑ Sump pumps checked for clean strainer and float switch.
Review fresh water system for leaks and confirm operation of fixtures and pump.
∑ Confirm operation of head, holding tank, discharge pump and pump out fittings.
Engine Room and Bilges
∑ Free of debris that may interfere and clog bilge pumps.
∑ Oil clean up material in place or at the ready.
∑ Free of water and oil.
∑ tools, spare parts and other material secured.
∑ Sea strainer(s) cleaned, and spare service parts on board.
∑ Stuffing boxes tightened, spray shield if needed is installed.
Machinery
∑ Fluids changed and at correct levels.
∑ Replacement fluids in inventory for topping off as needed.
∑ Steering system check. If hydraulic, check fluid level and pressure.
∑ Engine exhaust system double clamped, hoses checked.
∑ Hoses and cables free from chafe damage.
∑ Stuffing box checked for proper adjustment, and spray deflector as needed.
∑ Check accessory drive belts for correct tension and if replacement is needed.
∑ Spare belts and hoses on board?
∑ Are alarm systems, overheating, low oil pressure, etc., operational?
∑ Engine Instruments working and reading correctly?
∑ Inspect exhaust system for any leaks or restrictions.
∑ Confirm operation of any bilge blowers.
∑ Spare parts and tools required.
Electrical AC
∑ Are GFCI units installed in heads, galley, and exterior or other wet areas?
∑ Operational checks made to ensure proper operation of galley equipment, water heaters, space heating, refrigerator, and battery charger.
∑ Check shore power cords for any signs of damage, or overheating. Make sure fittings and receptacles are in good order, and that AC adapters are on board as needed.
Electrical DC
∑ Using load tester, check battery condition.
∑ Terminals tight and clean.
∑ DC switch panel labeled and all switches working?
∑ All navigation lights, anchor, and instrument lights in working order?
∑ All circuits and all equipment protected by circuit breakers of fuses.
Anchor/Ground Tackle
∑ Anchor rode/chain markers.
∑ Second Anchor and proper chain and rode.
∑ Dock lines, spring lines, and spares.
∑ Confirm anchor windlass operation.
∑ Anchor shackles wired.
General Safety and Miscellaneous.
∑ Are up-to-date charts and tide information onboard?
∑ Radio check for VHF units.
∑ Operational check for depth sounder(s), GPS units, Radar and Chart Plotters.
∑ Owners manuals for all vessel systems on board.
∑ Spare batteries for units that require same.
∑ Spare keys.
∑ Propane storage within ABYC standards.
∑ Proper number of PFDs, and are they located where accessable in an emergency?
∑ Distress signals of proper type and number within current date.
∑ Life Sling or similar means of retrieving a MOB.
∑ Life lines and railing in good condition.
∑ First Aid kit on board and do you know how to use it?
Tenders.
∑ Spare parts for motor. (spark plugs, shear pins, etc.)
∑ Kill switch, keys, and a spare.
∑ Oars, paddles, cushions.
∑ Pump, patch repair kit, extra drain plug.
∑ Fuel in proper container, and safely stowed.
∑ Grease and lube moving parts, and check lower unit oil.
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Old 03-14-2019, 05:49 PM   #2
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Don’t forget potential free Coast Guard Aux safety inspection. We just did ours in water. They may see things you might miss.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:20 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark P View Post
Donít forget potential free Coast Guard Aux safety inspection. We just did ours in water. They may see things you might miss.
Maybe, but I wouldn't bet on it.

https://marinehowto.com/hall-of-fail/

Down near the bottom is a series of photos (starting with "Commercial Boat 1" through to the end) showing a boat that passed a USCG inspection and had the sticker to prove it.

The entire post is well worth a read, too.
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Old 03-14-2019, 10:47 PM   #4
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Preseason Inspection Guide
Batteries
∑ Fluid level correct?
∑ Batteries age or condition suggests its time for a replacement?
∑ Batteries secured against movement.
∑ Batteries in proper boxes with covers.
∑ Supply of distilled water on board to refill batteries as needed.
Plumbing
∑ Check through hull for free operation, corrosion.
∑ Through hulls double clamped below water line, and elsewhere where possible
∑ Bilge pumps, confirm operation of float switches.
∑ Manual bilge pumps checked for operation.
∑ Sump pumps checked for clean strainer and float switch.
Review fresh water system for leaks and confirm operation of fixtures and pump.
∑ Confirm operation of head, holding tank, discharge pump and pump out fittings.
Engine Room and Bilges
∑ Free of debris that may interfere and clog bilge pumps.
∑ Oil clean up material in place or at the ready.
∑ Free of water and oil.
∑ tools, spare parts and other material secured.
∑ Sea strainer(s) cleaned, and spare service parts on board.
∑ Stuffing boxes tightened, spray shield if needed is installed.
Machinery
∑ Fluids changed and at correct levels.
∑ Replacement fluids in inventory for topping off as needed.
∑ Steering system check. If hydraulic, check fluid level and pressure.
∑ Engine exhaust system double clamped, hoses checked.
∑ Hoses and cables free from chafe damage.
∑ Stuffing box checked for proper adjustment, and spray deflector as needed.
∑ Check accessory drive belts for correct tension and if replacement is needed.
∑ Spare belts and hoses on board?
∑ Are alarm systems, overheating, low oil pressure, etc., operational?
∑ Engine Instruments working and reading correctly?
∑ Inspect exhaust system for any leaks or restrictions.
∑ Confirm operation of any bilge blowers.
∑ Spare parts and tools required.
Electrical AC
∑ Are GFCI units installed in heads, galley, and exterior or other wet areas?
∑ Operational checks made to ensure proper operation of galley equipment, water heaters, space heating, refrigerator, and battery charger.
∑ Check shore power cords for any signs of damage, or overheating. Make sure fittings and receptacles are in good order, and that AC adapters are on board as needed.
Electrical DC
∑ Using load tester, check battery condition.
∑ Terminals tight and clean.
∑ DC switch panel labeled and all switches working?
∑ All navigation lights, anchor, and instrument lights in working order?
∑ All circuits and all equipment protected by circuit breakers of fuses.
Anchor/Ground Tackle
∑ Anchor rode/chain markers.
∑ Second Anchor and proper chain and rode.
∑ Dock lines, spring lines, and spares.
∑ Confirm anchor windlass operation.
∑ Anchor shackles wired.
General Safety and Miscellaneous.
∑ Are up-to-date charts and tide information onboard?
∑ Radio check for VHF units.
∑ Operational check for depth sounder(s), GPS units, Radar and Chart Plotters.
∑ Owners manuals for all vessel systems on board.
∑ Spare batteries for units that require same.
∑ Spare keys.
∑ Propane storage within ABYC standards.
∑ Proper number of PFDs, and are they located where accessable in an emergency?
∑ Distress signals of proper type and number within current date.
∑ Life Sling or similar means of retrieving a MOB.
∑ Life lines and railing in good condition.
∑ First Aid kit on board and do you know how to use it?
Tenders.
∑ Spare parts for motor. (spark plugs, shear pins, etc.)
∑ Kill switch, keys, and a spare.
∑ Oars, paddles, cushions.
∑ Pump, patch repair kit, extra drain plug.
∑ Fuel in proper container, and safely stowed.
∑ Grease and lube moving parts, and check lower unit oil.[/QUOTE]


Not down playing importance of most of the items ..... I figure you should be off the dock by ..? .. Oct. / Nov. 2019 ..... FB
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Old 03-15-2019, 06:59 AM   #5
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Well having that sticker helps a lot when you get boarded. Boating near the GA/SC border, around Parris Island, and the Marine Air Station, we have Coast Guard, Beaufort Cty, and Chatham Cty police, plus DNR boats patrolling the waters - the chance of being boarded is quite high. If they pick the sticker on their birnoculars, they may pass on you, and if they board, it proves you take safety seriously.
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Old 03-15-2019, 08:36 AM   #6
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While it looks to be a fairly good basic check list, I was surprised not to see a test and recertification of the gas grill and cold beer storage facility. Frankly I couldn't imagine leaving the dock without the function test on the grill and temperature verification in the beer storage unit.

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Old 03-19-2019, 05:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GFC View Post
I got the following list of items to check before you start boating this season from my rep at Bristol Insurance. If you can think of things to add please don't hesitate. Thanks to Fred Kempe of Bristol Insurance Group for providing this list.

Preseason Inspection Guide
Batteries
∑ Fluid level correct?
∑ Batteries age or condition suggests its time for a replacement?
∑ Batteries secured against movement.
∑ Batteries in proper boxes with covers.
∑ Supply of distilled water on board to refill batteries as needed.
Plumbing
∑ Check through hull for free operation, corrosion.
∑ Through hulls double clamped below water line, and elsewhere where possible
∑ Bilge pumps, confirm operation of float switches.
∑ Manual bilge pumps checked for operation.
∑ Sump pumps checked for clean strainer and float switch.
Review fresh water system for leaks and confirm operation of fixtures and pump.
∑ Confirm operation of head, holding tank, discharge pump and pump out fittings.
Engine Room and Bilges
∑ Free of debris that may interfere and clog bilge pumps.
∑ Oil clean up material in place or at the ready.
∑ Free of water and oil.
∑ tools, spare parts and other material secured.
∑ Sea strainer(s) cleaned, and spare service parts on board.
∑ Stuffing boxes tightened, spray shield if needed is installed.
Machinery
∑ Fluids changed and at correct levels.
∑ Replacement fluids in inventory for topping off as needed.
∑ Steering system check. If hydraulic, check fluid level and pressure.
∑ Engine exhaust system double clamped, hoses checked.
∑ Hoses and cables free from chafe damage.
∑ Stuffing box checked for proper adjustment, and spray deflector as needed.
∑ Check accessory drive belts for correct tension and if replacement is needed.
∑ Spare belts and hoses on board?
∑ Are alarm systems, overheating, low oil pressure, etc., operational?
∑ Engine Instruments working and reading correctly?
∑ Inspect exhaust system for any leaks or restrictions.
∑ Confirm operation of any bilge blowers.
∑ Spare parts and tools required.
Electrical AC
∑ Are GFCI units installed in heads, galley, and exterior or other wet areas?
∑ Operational checks made to ensure proper operation of galley equipment, water heaters, space heating, refrigerator, and battery charger.
∑ Check shore power cords for any signs of damage, or overheating. Make sure fittings and receptacles are in good order, and that AC adapters are on board as needed.
Electrical DC
∑ Using load tester, check battery condition.
∑ Terminals tight and clean.
∑ DC switch panel labeled and all switches working?
∑ All navigation lights, anchor, and instrument lights in working order?
∑ All circuits and all equipment protected by circuit breakers of fuses.
Anchor/Ground Tackle
∑ Anchor rode/chain markers.
∑ Second Anchor and proper chain and rode.
∑ Dock lines, spring lines, and spares.
∑ Confirm anchor windlass operation.
∑ Anchor shackles wired.
General Safety and Miscellaneous.
∑ Are up-to-date charts and tide information onboard?
∑ Radio check for VHF units.
∑ Operational check for depth sounder(s), GPS units, Radar and Chart Plotters.
∑ Owners manuals for all vessel systems on board.
∑ Spare batteries for units that require same.
∑ Spare keys.
∑ Propane storage within ABYC standards.
∑ Proper number of PFDs, and are they located where accessable in an emergency?
∑ Distress signals of proper type and number within current date.
∑ Life Sling or similar means of retrieving a MOB.
∑ Life lines and railing in good condition.
∑ First Aid kit on board and do you know how to use it?
Tenders.
∑ Spare parts for motor. (spark plugs, shear pins, etc.)
∑ Kill switch, keys, and a spare.
∑ Oars, paddles, cushions.
∑ Pump, patch repair kit, extra drain plug.
∑ Fuel in proper container, and safely stowed.
∑ Grease and lube moving parts, and check lower unit oil.
Do you think I can use this checklist as a go/no go checklist during upcoming on the water sea trial and to determine what things on the boat are repair/replace items before we make final offer. Should I expect everything to be in working order on the boat before we purchase? I will have a marine surveyor on board and a engine mechanic and will take fluid samples for analysis. You guys have advice or am I being picky and unreasonable. This is my first boat so I don’t know ��*♂️.
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Old 03-19-2019, 05:50 PM   #8
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If this is your first boat I would absolutely make sure the surveyor is OK with you being along while the survey is done so you can learn about the boat. Some surveyors do not want to deal with the buysers at all. Same with the mechanic doing the engines. Get a safety check from the CGAux or Power Squadron, you may also learn something. Good luck.
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Old 03-19-2019, 05:59 PM   #9
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What?? No inspection of the ice maker!!! But G&T time might be interrupted
Actually, this is a great checklist - thanks.
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Old 03-19-2019, 06:35 PM   #10
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thx to everyone

thanks for all the good advise, I will definitely add USCG safety inspection to survey.

To add some more background, The surveyor and I have already done a walk through inspection on the hard in Dec. when the boat was in heated storage. the boat is in good condition and as advertised. As soon as the ice melts we will finish the sea trial survey.

I don't expect any major issues with the boat but I don't want to be responsible for upgrading and repairs of a lot of small items. I guess I think that a boat should be in good working order, normal wear and tear excepted, Same as buying a house or expensive auto. Is that normal or am I way off base.

Coalman
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Old 03-19-2019, 06:42 PM   #11
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For me, I would not pay for a survey on a purchase if I was not present.


If the surveyor has an issue with me being there, I would find a different surveyor. When I select a surveyor, I want some one to explain issues and show them to me as they around found.


Just me...
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Old 03-19-2019, 06:50 PM   #12
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What FF said. I've had surveys done on 3 boats and I was present for all. It was never an issue with the surveyor


Don't forget-->YOU are the employer and should have some say in how things go.
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Old 03-19-2019, 07:01 PM   #13
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Yea I agree. The surveyor I have is a good guy and he welcomes me to be aboard while survey is done. he's very helpful.
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Old 03-24-2019, 08:51 AM   #14
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For me, I would not pay for a survey on a purchase if I was not present.


If the surveyor has an issue with me being there, I would find a different surveyor. When I select a surveyor, I want some one to explain issues and show them to me as they around found.


Just me...
I agree as well. That's silly to not be present for your own survey. Obviously I know it happens a lot though because so many boat purchases are out of state deals and scheduling can be tricky for all parties.

I'll definitely be at my survey/seatrial in 2 weeks. I wouldn't miss it for the world. Lol
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:49 AM   #15
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Thanks for the list Mike. I have added a few things to my list. One important item for ASD is to carry enough spare parts to rebuild the entire Vacuflush system.

Also I pulled all my spare parts out and created a spare part list (Crusty's idea). I found I had 2 genny impellers. I now have 3.
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Old 03-25-2019, 06:14 AM   #16
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Don't mind me stating the obvious. That's a great checklist - but it isn't just preseason.

Put an T, M, MS, E, against those items that should be checked on the periods. Before each trip, monthly, mid-season, end of season (if you have one).

And another thing. For the ER, get in the habit of keeping your bilge pads renewed. Then doing an ER walk-through before starting and after shut down once cool enough. Check under the engines and trannies, lift the floor boards by your bilge pumps, look at the edge of stringers where any fluid tends to get trapped. Cast you eye over everything. It will only take five or ten minutes and can save you a lot of heartache.

I am in the habit of checking the sight glasses before we start so I do this quick check at the same time with a "just going into the engine room" call to the wife as I go.

I know this is easier for us that have walk in ERs (even without stand up room), but even for those who have to lift a floorboard and look in - it is a worthwhile exercise.
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Old 03-25-2019, 07:59 AM   #17
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Well having that sticker helps a lot when you get boarded. Boating near the GA/SC border, around Parris Island, and the Marine Air Station, we have Coast Guard, Beaufort Cty, and Chatham Cty police, plus DNR boats patrolling the waters - the chance of being boarded is quite high. If they pick the sticker on their birnoculars, they may pass on you, and if they board, it proves you take safety seriously.
When on active duty, I targeted those with stickers depending on the total circumstances.


For every safety minded boater there was one who thought of the sticker as an LEO repellant so they could get away with stuff during the season.


The problem with pre season checklists is too many think they can relax now for too long.
So comrehensive is less important than points of likely or dangerous failure and keep up with those.
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Old 03-25-2019, 08:19 AM   #18
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Greetings,
Mr. GFC. For those that have them...PUT IN THE DRAIN PLUG!!!!


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Old 03-29-2019, 06:02 PM   #19
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Do you think I can use this checklist as a go/no go checklist during upcoming on the water sea trial and to determine what things on the boat are repair/replace items before we make final offer. Should I expect everything to be in working order on the boat before we purchase? I will have a marine surveyor on board and a engine mechanic and will take fluid samples for analysis. You guys have advice or am I being picky and unreasonable. This is my first boat so I don’t know ��*♂️."


There is an excellent article entitled "Marine Survey 101, How to do your own marine survey" It is an excellent article by Port Credit Marine Surveys it goes step by step with photos and almost a check list. You can google it under "Marine Survey 101". Best wishes with your purchase.
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