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Boat Trailer Checklist PDF

Boat Trailer Checklist

Your Boat Trailer Will Always Be Ready to Go with This Easy Maintenance Guide

Boat trailer checklist from Van Isle Marina

For those who store their boat on dry land, or who might like to tow their boat to a favourite inland lake, the boat trailer is an essential piece of equipment. To properly tow and launch your boat, the trailer must be in excellent shape. That’s why we’ve created this checklist for the care and keeping of your boat trailer.

Regulations

As with any vehicle, always check to make sure your trailer is legal and ready for the road.
  • Check to make sure registration is current
  • Check to make sure the boat load doesn’t exceed 85% of rated trailer capacity
  • Check to make sure the trailer plus boat load doesn’t exceed 85% of towing vehicle capacity

Physical Condition of Trailerboat trailer checklist PDF

Lubrication is key for a safe and secure trailer. When in doubt, have your trailer checked by a reputable professional.
  • Check for corrosion and broken welds
  • Check all rollers and pads for wear. Ensure proper support for the boat
  • Check and lubricate wheel bearings as needed
  • Check and lubricate winch as needed
  • Check tongue jack and wheel and lubricate as needed
  • Check tongue lock and lubricate as needed

Tires and Bearings

boat trailer checklist - tires

Trailer tires go from long trips on hot asphalt and backroads to cool water, making them prone to wear and cracking. Always check tires for wear periodically.
  • Inspect tire guard and fender
  • Check tire pressure
  • Check tire wear and ensure they have adequate tread > 1/4 inch
  • Check that lugs are properly tightened and lubricated
  • Check for a spare and ensure spare is road-ready
  • Check that bearings have been replaced within manufacturer guidelines

Trailer Hook Up

The ball, coupler, tie down straps and safety chains must always be completely secured to ensure safety on the road.
  • Check that the trailer ball matches coupler size and is securely engaged. The jack should not be able to lift the coupler off the ball
  • Check that the trailer ball is properly torqued
  • Check that the ball mount is secure in the receiver tube with either a hitch pin or lock
  • Check that the coupler latch is locked and secure via hitch pin or lock
  • Check that the trailer jack is fully retracted
  • Check that safety chains are hooked up and crisscrossed beneath the coupler. This will keep the coupler from hitting the road in case of an accident
  • Check that all tie down straps are in good shape and secured

boat trailer checklist - hook up

Trailer Brakes

boat trailer checklist - brake lights

If your trailer is equipped with brakes, you’ll need to check the brake fluid as often as you’d check the brake fluid levels on your main vehicle.
  • Check brake lines from actuator to brake clusters
  • Check brake fluid level
  • Check for proper operation when connected to the towing vehicle
  • Check running lights on vehicle and trailer
  • Check brake lights on vehicle and trailer

Electronics and Connections

It’s essential that the trailer lights and electronics are working properly. Take a few moments at the start of every trip to ensure your turn signals and running lights are operating.
  • Check condition of wiring for corrosion, cuts, etc.
  • Check that grounding circuit is properly attached
  • Check wire harness and tow vehicle socket
  • Check that the electrical plug is secure and firmly in the vehicle’s socket
  • Check turn signals on vehicle and trailer
  • Check that the breakaway switch cable is securely attached to vehicle
  • Check that break control is working and adjusted to the trailer’s weight

To make sure your trailer is in top-notch condition, always take the time to give your trailer a thorough check. This is particularly important at the beginning, middle and end of the season, or after a long trip. Lastly, always raise your boat engine and ensure all your onboard gear is secure before you drive away. Doing this basic check will give you the peace of mind to tow and launch your boat with confidence.

At Van Isle Marina, we provide completely secure moorage with annual, monthly and guest options. Conveniently located in sunny Sidney, BC, we’re just a quick cruise away from a variety of fantastic destinations. With amenities like storage lockers, car parking, and a full-service marine fueling station and dock store, you’ll find everything you’ll need to start and end your trip. Come down and see us, or request services/moorage information at (250) 656-1138 or by email.

Bow and Stern Anchoring Best Practices

Bow and Stern Anchoring Best Practices

How to Set Two Anchors

Knowing a variety of stern and bow tying and anchoring techniques is essential for any boater’s toolkit. Here on the West Coast of Canada, we have such a wide variety of anchorages. Knowing which anchoring technique to use will come in handy many times over and bow and stern anchoring is one of the best since it’s so versatile.

When to Use Bow & Stern Anchoring

  • Anchoring in small bays
  • For mooring, if required
  • Anchoring at the narrow edge of channels
  • Anchoring in busy areas
  • Anchoring in soft ground
  • Anchoring amid shifting currents and tides
  • Anchoring right over a great fishing spot
  • Anchoring in a storm situation
  • Anchoring at an angle that protects your boat from rolling waves

For best results when using a bow and stern anchoring technique, make sure you get plenty of practice in sheltered waters. This way, you can deploy and retrieve both anchors and cruise away in just a few simple steps. At the same time, brush up on your knot tying skills with our guide to 9 easy knots for boating.

On the West Coast of BC, we’re so lucky to have our pick of spectacular anchorages all the way around the Vancouver Island. For areas with high winds and strong currents, like Cape Scott through to Quatsino Sound, we highly recommend using the bow and stern anchoring technique. This is also an excellent technique for a calmer but tight anchorage like Telegraph Harbour, just off Chemainus. Dual anchoring techniques can also make it possible for you to sail or cruise to areas you’d only dreamed of. In fact, having a boat and knowing how to best operate it is like having a pass to some of the most exclusive and secluded destinations.

Prepare your Primary and Secondary Anchors and Lines

Find a calm space away from other traffic on the water and get your stern anchor and lines ready, making sure knots are securely tied.

  1. Attach a buoy and trip line using a hitch knot or anchor knot (optional) to your stern anchor’s trip line hole. A trip line and buoy allow other boaters to clearly see that you have an anchor out.
  2. Load the anchor and line into your dinghy, making sure your line is tied securely to the boat or through a fairlead and winch if you have them.

Anchors Aweigh

  1. Facing the wind, set your primary anchor.
  2. Slowly back away, paying out extra line.
  3. Next, you or the skipper will board the dinghy and get the stern anchor ready. Refresh your knowledge on dinghy and tender safety.
  4. Drop the stern anchor behind the boat on either the port or starboard side. You’ll want to angle your boat at 15 degrees off the windward swell (on a diagonal).
  5. Drop the stern anchor from the dinghy with a scope of minimum 5:1. This means you’ll want to anchor at 5 feet for every 1 foot of water depth.
  • If you’re anchoring overnight, aim for at least a 7:1 scope. To increase length, you can add chain to the lines. Add at least 20 feet of anchor chain for best results, especially in strong winds. If there isn’t enough room to let out as much rope as you need for a good scope, you can also use a kellet for extra weight. The kellet should be placed on the mid-line of the rope. This will help to keep your anchor rode nice and horizontal in the water, keeping the boat in position.
  1. Take in the slack for the stern anchor and set it.
  2. Moving back to your primary anchor, adjust the scope as needed, making sure to pay out enough line for the secondary anchor. When you’re done, both the bow and stern anchors should be tight.

Retrieving your Anchors

  1. When you’re ready to keep moving, make sure your engines are ready and willing.
  2. Create some slack in your stern anchor line.
  • If you used a tripping line and buoy, take the dinghy out to haul up the anchor. If you didn’t use a buoy and tripping line, give the bow line slack. Then move the boat back to the stern anchor drop point. Haul the anchor just like you would for your primary anchor.
  1. Bring your stern anchor and rode onto the boat and stow them safely.
  2. Secure the dinghy
  3. Haul in your primary anchor as you normally would and head out!

The stern and bow anchor technique takes some finesse. Be sure to practice it regularly to keep your skills sharp for when you want to anchor in a small bay or inlet. Also always make sure that you have the right anchor and ground tackle for the size of the boat and wind conditions. This is known as holding power.

For instance, a 25 foot yacht in winds of 30 knots would require holding power of 490. If this boat were using an anchor made for lighter wind conditions and a smaller boat, you’d run the risk of damaging your equipment and losing the anchor.

Our team at Van Isle Marina know that your boat is your baby, so if you have any questions or concerns about the right anchor for your yacht, check out our two-part series on anchors and anchoring or contact us for help.

Part One- Types of Anchors

Part Two- Anchoring Your Boat

Are you looking for the perfect boat to make this summer unforgettable? Come and see us at Van Isle Marina where we have a fantastic selection to choose from, plus a large (and growing!) selection of luxury Pursuit Boats. Fully loaded with everything to make lifelong memories on the water, Pursuit Boats are made in the USA and built with world-class features and amenities. Browse our new and used boat listings, then contact our expert yacht broker, to find your new boat today.

De-Winterizing Your Boat

De-Winterizing Your Boat Checklist

Spring Maintenance Checklist for Your Boat

 

Spring is here and you’re more than ready to get back out on the water. There are a few key things you’re going to need to take care of first though, to make sure that your boat is ready for the inaugural trip. Not only will properly de-winterizing your boat ensure that everything’s in good working order, it will help extend the life of the boat.

If your boat has been in dry storage for the winter, it’s a good idea to check your trailer first. This 10-minute check will let you move your boat back to the water with confidence. Most importantly, check the renewal date for your boating and fishing / crabbing licenses and make sure any required decals are easily visible.

Trailer

To safely transport your boat back to the water, the trailer and tires need to be road-ready.

  • Check trailer tires for pressure, any cracking, or inadequate tread. Replace tires if they’re older than 3-5 years.
  • Check tongue latch and coupling
  • Check trailer brake fluid level
  • Check trailer lights and replace as needed
  • Test the rollers
  • Check the padding where the hull rests

Anchors, Lines and Ropes

All mooring and anchoring equipment should be clean and ready to go. It’s always a good idea to purchase new line before the start of the season.

  • Spring Boating Checklist - RopeCheck that you have enough rope to launch and tie your boat
  • Check that you have enough rope to secure your boat in at least two areas
  • Check all knots for anchors and hardware
  • Check for any damaged or tangled line or rope
  • Make sure any bumpers are in the boat

Belts, Cables and Hoses

Check for wear and tear and consult a boat mechanic if you have any concerns.

  • Check for cracks and brittle areas
  • Check for wear on belts
  • Check the outer layer of control cables. Any cracking or swelling can be signs of a problem

Electrical

As boaters, we rely heavily on electrical equipment for a safe and comfortable experience. Go through each of the electrical components on your boat to make sure everything’s in good working order.

  • Check all connections for corrosion and cleanliness
  • Remove battery terminals, clean connections with wire brushDe-Winterization of your Boat Checklist - Helm
  • Check the battery is charged. Replace if needed
  • Test the generator on full tilt
  • Check interior and exterior lights
  • Check navigational equipment (GPS)
  • Check electrical box
  • Check HVAC or air conditioner on hot and cold

Engine and Fuel System

The heart of your boat, you won’t get very far without the engine! We recommend a regular inspection by a trained boat technician, ideally at the start and end of the boating season.

  • Check transom mounts (outboard)
  • Check for any smoke
  • Check transmission
  • Check levers on every seacock
  • Check raw water intake and strainer
  • Inspect connections, hoses and tanks for damage or leaks
  • Replace spark plugs and other components as needed
  • Check that all clamps and fittings are tight
  • Check that exhaust, engine and ventilation systems are working well

Fluid Levels

Topped-up fluids will keep your engine and steering column going strong. Replace any expired fluids and top up everything else as needed.

  • Check coolant
  • Check engine oil
  • Check power steering fluid
  • Check power trim reservoirs
  • Check coolant levels
  • Change engine oil, filter and drive lubricants as needed

Hull and Exterior

The key to prolonging the life of your boat, the hull should be kept clean and waxed, with any damage taken care of right away.Spring Checklist for your boat - Hull

  • Check hull for blisters, distortions and cracks
  • Clean the hull, deck and topsides
  • Check that the drain plug is secure *Put a backup drain plug somewhere safe on board
  • Check for cracks or damage around fittings
  • Check for damage on or around the hatches
  • Check upholstery for any mold / mildew / tears
  • Check the livewells

Interior

The living space and head are a cozy place to crash at the end of a busy day of fishing and water sports. Take a few minutes to check lighting, appliances and water, to avoid any unpleasant surprises.

  • Check for water pressure and quality
  • Check for damage to doors and portholes
  • Check lights and switchesboat spring checklist - interior
  • Check for leaks in fridge
  • Check temperature in fridge / freezer
  • Test the appliances
  • Check lights and switches
  • Check TV, speakers and any other extras

Propeller

A damaged propeller can’t work as efficiently as an undamaged one. If you see any marks or chips / dings that are concerning, talk to a pro about repair or replacement.

  • Check propellers for any damage
  • Make sure propeller is secure and replace bearings if needed

Safety Equipment and Gear

Up-to-date safety equipment is a huge part of any vessel. We recommend booking a safety inspection by the Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons (CPS-ECP) if available.

  • Check the flares
  • Check marine radio
  • Check condition of heaving line and lifebuoy(s)
  • Check condition of first aid kit
  • Check life jackets and replace any expired jackets
  • Check the fire extinguishers. Replace if expired
  • Check carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. Replace batteries

Water System

For washing up and drinking, clean water is essential.

  • If you added antifreeze, flush it out now
  • Empty the grey and black tanks
  • Refill the fresh-water tank

Clean the Boat

Give your boat a good spring clean to get it off to the best possible start this season.De-winterizing your boat checklist - Cleaning

  • Clean the hull, scrubbing away any rusty spots or fuel drips
  • Scrub any areas where mold may have started over the winter
  • Clean the carpets and vacuum any debris
  • Wash the windows
  • Disinfect hard and soft surfaces using a gentle spray solution
  • Spray a fabric protector on any vinyl to block harsh UV light

At Van Isle Marina, we offer moorage with annual, monthly and guest options. Conveniently located in sunny Sidney, BC on the Haro Strait, we’re just a quick cruise away from a variety of fantastic destinations. With amenities like storage lockers, car parking, and a full-service marine fueling station and dock store, you’ll find everything you could need to start and end your trip. Are you as excited for the summer boating season as we are? Come down and see us, or request services/moorage information by calling (250) 656-1138 or via email.

USED BOAT BUYING CHECKLIST

Used Boat Buying Checklist

Looking for a Pre-Owned Boat?
Give it a Thorough Inspection Before You Buy

 

Purchasing a used boat can save you lots of money, when done right. A lightly used boat that’s been treated with kid gloves can be an absolute steal and provide you and your family with many happy years on the water. If the seller is upgrading, they might even throw in PFD’s, seat cushions, the cover and fishing / watersports equipment. Buying a used boat is also an excellent way to get your sea legs established without the sticker price of a brand-new vessel.

When shopping around for a used boat, there are many things to take into consideration. It can be intimidating, particularly if you’re brand new to boating. First, consider what type of powerboat you envision yourself in. Are you most excited for watersports, or relaxed weekends cruising the coast? Do you want to entertain friends and family or enjoy secluded getaways? Will you keep it moored or haul-out at the end of every season? To keep you focused on your search, decide early on what type and size of boat works with your lifestyle.

Once you’ve found a few boats you’d like to take a closer look at, or what you suspect is “the one”, take out our used boat buying checklist and start checking off the boxes. Together, we’ll make sure you’re completely confident about your new-to-you boat!

Brand

Go for a well-known brand but avoid models that seem to be prominent on the used sales scene. This could indicate an issue with the model that you don’t want to inherit.

boat buying checklist - check interior / exterior

  • Does the brand have a good reputation?
  • Does the model have a good reputation?
  • Check reviews
  • Ask other owners for their feedback

 

History

Knowing the history of the individual boat is helpful in knowing where any dings or scrapes / larger issues may have come from

  • Any recalls?
  • Any known issues?
  • Has the boat been in any accidents?

Engine

The engine can be one of the most expensive parts of a boat, so take your time and really make sure it’s in good working order. A test drive will really give you a sense of how the boat handles.

  • Inboard or outboard motor
  • How many motors
  • Check engine hatch for breathability
  • Motor starts smoothly
  • Check engine insulation
  • Check for any leaks
  • Check age of engines
  • Look for any smoke
  • Check transmission
  • Check levers on every seacock
  • Check raw water intake and strainer

 

Electrical

All electronics should be in good condition and working well. If there’s a short or any indication of issues with the electronics, the electrical should be thoroughly inspected

  • Review owner’s manual
  • Check battery for damage or corrosion
  • Check interior and exterior lights
  • Check navigational equipment (GPS)
  • Check electrical box
  • Check HVAC or Air Conditioner for effective cooling and heating
  • Check appliances
  • Check all wiring and connections
  • Check for corrosion or signs of damage
  • Test the generator on full tilt for 30 minutes
  • Do a final test of all electronics on board

 

Exterior Condition

Beyond the aesthetics of the boat, the exterior condition can tell you a lot about how well this boat has been treated and the potential for bigger problems down the line. Check the boat over with the hull lifted out of the water so you can see below the waterline.

  • Check the fibreglass/laminate for any hollow sounds when tapped
  • Check for scratches and cracks
  • Check for cracks or damage around fittings
  • Check for any damage on and around hatches
  • Check condition of handrails
  • Check to make sure cleats are secure and in good shape
  • Check for any rust
  • Check the condition of the deck
  • Check the condition of the hull
  • Look for bubbling in the paint
  • Check the condition of the zinc anodes
  • Check the bearings of the rudder
  • Check the overall rudder
  • Check seating and upholstery for any mold / mildew / tears
  • Check the helm for any damages
  • Check the steering wheel

 

Interior Condition

The interior of the boat will be your home away from home, so you’ll want to make sure it’s comfortable and in good shape. You’ll also want to make sure it’s free of any issues with plumbing and electricity.

  • Check the condition of lockers
  • Check the condition of trims, stairs, flooring
  • Check for damage to doors and portholes
  • Check lights and switches
  • Check TV, speakers and any other extras
  • Check toilet, sink and shower for water pressure and quality
  • Check appliances for interior or exterior damage
  • Check to ensure that appliances are bolted and mounted
  • Check for leaks in fridge
  • Check temperature in fridge / freezer
  • Test all appliances to make sure they work

 

Safety Equipment

The bilge pump, fire extinguisher, anchor and chains should all be in good working order.  Even if you plan on replacing most of the safety supplies, it’s a good idea to look through the existing ones to get a feel for how the current owners have cared for the boat and its components.

  • Check expiration date of fire extinguisherboat buying checklist - check marine radio
  • Check bilge pump
  • Check condition of life jackets and any expiry dates
  • Check oars and any other manual propulsion tools
  • Check the flares
  • Check to see if the marine radio is working
  • Check condition of heaving line and lifebuoy(s)
  • Check condition of first aid kit

 

Owner’s Manual and Legal Documents

Look through the owner’s manual and legal documents so you have the exact specs and features list with you. You can either print it off yourself or ask the current owner to provide one.

  • Check the bill of sale or sales documentation
  • Check insurance papers
  • Check for any outstanding money owed
  • Check that the engine hours and KM match what’s on the sales contract
  • Check for any warranty information

 

During the sale of a boat, once a price has been agreed upon by the buyer and seller, the boat will then have a marine survey and mechanical inspection performed as part of the condition of the sale. This means that many of the buying a used boat checklist items above will be checked off by a professional and you can rest assured that you’re getting a quality yacht. The cost for these inspections, however, are paid for by the buyer.

Once you’re sure you’re found the boat for you, be sure to review our post on the ins and outs of buying a used yacht. This will cover everything from the sales process to the storage of your new vessel, for a worry-free purchase experience.

Is this the year you’re making the leap to boating? Looking for that perfect used boat? Come and talk to us at Van Isle Marina. We have a fantastic selection of new and pre-loved yachts and cruisers to choose from, as well as a wide variety of new world-class Pursuit Boats. Browse our new and used listings, then contact our expert yacht broker, to find the boat you’ve always dreamed of.

yachts - center vs dual console

Dual Console Vs. Center Console Boats

How to Choose Between a Center Console Boat and Dual Console Boat

Whether to choose a center console layout or dual console layout is a common decision when purchasing a new boat.  The console design you’re going to be happiest with is ultimately going to be the one that suits what you want to get out of your boat.

Maybe you’re an avid fisherperson who is willing to trade a middle aisle and more seating for a larger helm with more space for custom electronics. Maybe you need a boat with seating and lounging zones to really entertain with class. There’s a lot to consider when it comes to choosing which type of powerboat and which type of console will be best for the type of adventures you want to have.

What Is a Center Console Boat?yacht with center console_victoria bc

A center console has a single console that contains the helm, the Captain’s chair and usually one or more passenger seats. The amount of seating inside the center console will depend on the model and size of boat you buy.

Generally, a center console boat is designed for the more serious anglers who need to be able to move around the perimeter of the boat in a hurry. There’s no center aisle, so you can keep hold of the whopping halibut (check out some great halibut recipes here). You also get more raised deck space and work area with a center console boat, which many anglers prefer.

A smaller center console boat under 20 feet long will usually have up to two seats for the skipper/captain/whatever term you prefer to go by, while a larger boat 20 feet and longer might be built with a whole bench seat and entertainment area, complete with grill, sink, storage and more.

A center console is a bit like that pickup truck that you’d use to go hunting but wouldn’t necessarily take into the city. Just like that Supercab or Crew Cab with heated seats, moon roof, and LED screen. Today’s center console models have also evolved to include a whole host of luxury features as well. They’re no longer just bare-bones utilitarian models meant for angling and not much else, but that’s what single consoles were designed for and what they excel at.

What Is a Dual Console Boat?yacht with dual console victoria bc

A dual console boat has two consoles. One houses the helm and the other is for passengers who want to get out of the elements without going into the cabin. This gives the driver his or her own space to do their thing in the cockpit, while passengers have their own separate area to hang out.

The dual consoles create a walking path. This lets boaters easily access the bow and stern seating areas without needing to go all the way around the boat. This layout also means more options for dry storage. With more room for storage of food, supplies and other gear, it’s easier to enjoy longer trips.

With more seating and more storage, as well as two covered areas for passenger and driver, a dual console is ideal for family fun on the water.  

Going with the vehicle analogy once again, a dual console is like the luxury minivan or SUV of the boat world – they’re loaded with features! You’ve got your multiple rows of seating, screens for the kiddies, tons of integrated storage, keyless access, and the cool sliding door that opens with a tap of your foot. Here, comfort is the highest priority, even though you might load it up with camping gear or drive it to your favourite hiking spot.

What Are the Pros of a Center Console Boat?

  • Usually, a larger helm panel with more room for additional electronics and devices
  • More deck space for baiting tackle and working with your catch
  • Fewer obstructions along the rails make it more convenient for anglersboat with center console
  • Ideal for watersports
  • Driver can have more privacy at the wheel

What Are the Pros of a Dual Console Boat?

  • Typically larger than center console
  • More entertainment and lounging spaces, like forward seating and convertible transom seating
  • More dry storage space
  • Best for leisure and group boating
  • Offers greater weather and spray protection with a wraparound windshield
  • Hardtop can cover the width of the boat to provide shade
  • Passengers can remain on deck and away from the elements in second console

What Are the Cons of a Center Console Boat?

  • Less weather protection
  • There’s more deck space but less storage
  • Tend to be smaller than dual console models
  • Helm is usually smaller on a center console model
  • Canopied console may not do as well in inclement weather

What Are the Cons of a Dual Console Boat?

  • Deck space is usually sacrificed for extra seating
  • Can move from bow to stern using the walkway, but can’t move around the perimeter
  • Less room to stow rods and gear under the gunwales
  • Less convenient for fishing

When Choosing Between Center or Dual Console, Think Pursuit Boats

After reading this, you probably have a good idea of whether a center or a dual console boat will fit your lifestyle the best. You can also read our blog post on choosing the right yacht for your needs.

The next step is to see the difference for yourself by viewing our range of watercraft in person! Seeing and touring the boats you’re most interested in will help you narrow your choices down.

At Van Isle Marina, we are the proud and exclusive dealer of Pursuit Boats right here on BC’s West Coast. We offer a spectacular collection of dual and single console vessels, designed to match your fishing, entertaining and cruising goals to a T. From the 26’ long C260 center console to the 37’ 11” D365 dual console model, there’s something to suit all needs. Made in the USA with the highest quality and dependability. One of these feature-packed Pursuits will be exactly right for you and whoever you love to spend time with on the water.

Ready to take the plunge? Come visit our team of dedicated brokers at Van Isle Marina. Located in beautiful Sidney, BC, we offer a wide range of luxurious new and used yachts and boats in addition to the complete line of Pursuit models. Call or email today to find the perfect fit for your boating needs.

Boat Maintenance Checklist PDF

Boat Maintenance Checklist

Use this Handy Checklist for Boats / Yachts Before Getting Back on the Water

Boat maintenance is a key part of keeping your boat cruising smoothly for optimal enjoyment, safety and resale value. At Van Isle Marina, we know there’s a lot to think about when it comes to maintaining your boat. This is why we’ve created this handy cheat sheet for the care and keeping of your boat.boat maintenance checklist PDF cover image

It’s a good idea to go through this boat maintenance checklist at the end of the season. This will give you plenty of time to schedule the required boat repairs and maintenance during the low season.

Completing all the maintenance needed for your vessel will make it easy to be out on the water as soon as the cruising season begins.

Boat Mechanics

To ensure a smooth trip, take the time to inspect the engine and all its parts. Replace items as needed to ensure your boat is in good working order.

  • Check the engine and operating temperatureboat maintenance checklist - check propellers
  • Check propeller for any damage
  • Test steering for any leaks
  • Check transom mount (if using an outboard)
  • Check fuel lines for weak points or leaks
  • Do an oil change
  • Check spark plugs
  • Check fluid levels
  • Check gearcase for water
  • Check belts, cables and hoses
  • Lubricate fittings (where required)

Boat’s Electrical Systems

Because your boat experiences a lot of vibration and hull flex, it’s important to properly troubleshoot and maintain electrical components.

  • Check battery charge level
  • Check battery connections and cables
  • Look for any acid leaks around terminals and clean as needed
  • Replace battery if needed
  • Check and/or replace interior and exterior lighting and wiring

Hull of the Boat

As the watertight part of the boat, the hull maintains the structural integrity of the boat, protecting the cabin, cargo, engines and all other components.boat maintenance checklist - waxing the hull

  • Check for any signs of leaks
  • Check for cracks or stressed areas
  • Check thru-hulls for rust
  • Check stringers
  • Wash with a pH balanced soap
  • Wax or paint hull

Boat’s Electronics

Not to be confused with electrical systems, the onboard electronics of the boat let you navigate and communicate effectively.

  • Check wiring for any corrosion
  • Check voltage levels
  • Update firmware to latest version

Boat’s HVAC System

Ready access to water as well as reliable heating and air conditioning are essential to an enjoyable trip out on your boat.

  • Check and refill water tank
  • Check the drain for clogs
  • Check for condensate in pan under evaporator
  • Clean air filters and raw water strainer
  • Reverse cycle the system to make sure heating is available
  • Check the water pump impeller and condenser coil for any build-up

Upholstery and Canvas on Board

Seasonal maintenance is needed to preserve and extend the life of the on-board upholstery and covers.boat maintenance checklist - clean the upholstery

  • Check for mould and mildew – clean as needed with vinegar solution
  • Remove and wash canvas
  • Check for waterproofing – reapply waterproofing spray if needed

Safety Equipment on Board your Boat

Ensure your safety equipment is in good working condition and within the expiry date. Replace anything that has expired or is in poor condition.

  • Check flare(s)
  • Check fire extinguisher
  • Inspect lifejackets for tears or missing parts
  • Inspect and restock first aid kit
  • Check flashlight and batteries
  • Check and refill spare gas can
  • Check EPIRB (Emergency Positioning Indicating Radio Beacon)
  • Check tender for damage
  • Check paddles and outboard motor on tender

Click here to download our boat maintenance checklist as a PDF.

Getting ready to get back out on the water this spring? Come and see us first. At Van Isle Marina, we’re a one-stop shop for all your cruising needs, from oils and additives to charts and tackle. We offer a great marine fuel discount program for recreational and commercial vessels. Enjoy full-service assistance with dock lines and fueling from our marine gas station team. We’re open 8 :00 AM – 4:00 PM daily (winter) and 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM daily (summer) and we look forward to seeing you in beautiful Sidney, BC. Contact us anytime for a service request for moorage, haul out, dry land storage and more.

How to Make the Most of Virtual Boat Shows

How to Make the Most of Virtual Boat Shows

Explore All the Options and Products from the Comfort of Your Own Home

 

In 2021, Canadian Boat Shows are going virtual in response to efforts to get Covid-19 under control. Vendors, brokers and presenters have had to get creative in this new online space, but they’re taking the challenge and filling their sails. As more virtual boat shows launch, the online platform could reach larger audiences than ever before. If you’ve always dreamed of attending an international boat show in Europe, now’s your chance.

Obviously, the experience is different from attending a boat show in person, but there’s nothing to say that you can’t still take advantage of an online showcase. In fact, it opens an opportunity to “visit” boat shows all around the world from the comfort of your own home. Whether you are brand new to yachting or already an experienced yachter, the new online format will have a plethora of online boating knowledge, tips and tricks for you to take advantage of.

Today’s boat shows feature live or pre-recorded interviews with brokers and builders, a detailed video walkthrough via Zoom, virtual boat tours or presentations to a registered audience and other exclusive features available to registrants. If you have a few boats in mind that you haven’t been able to see in person yet, give the virtual boat show a try! The one-on-one format could be one of the most relaxed, unscripted ways to “tour” a boat.

Tips for the Best Virtual Boat Show Experience

  • Find a quiet, comfortable space where you can talk and listen without being interruptedvirtual boat shows in 2021
  • Know the platform you’re using and test your audio / video before the show starts
  • Have a list of products and accessories you’re interested in and would like to learn more about
  • If you have a particular model or type of boat(s) in mind, this gives you the ability to do your own research and really get down to the nitty gritty with the builders and brokers. Rather than focusing on brochure basics, you’ll be able to really narrow down which model suits what you want in a boat.
  • Keep a set of questions on hand, for when you have an opportunity to ask fellow boaters or industry professionals. It’s easy to forget in the moment. You can also email the presenters afterwards.
  • During walkthroughs, take advantage of the chat bar to ask questions as the broker leads the “tour”
  • Take note of anything you notice that you’d want to upgrade or add, or anything you have a specific question about, like how the ventilation is in the cabin, how is the access to the engine room, etc.… all those things that you can only experience while on board.
  • Learn how to take screen shots with the device you’ll be using so you can save shots of specific angles and aspects of the layout, etc.… This way you can look back on it later.

The First Virtual Boat Shows

Palm Beach, FL started the trend with their first virtual show ever in May 2020. Next up, was the 2021 Virtual Toronto International Boat Show as Canada’s first-ever virtual boat show. These have prompted other regions and even different manufacturers and builders to follow suit.Toronto boat show

Up next is the 59th annual Vancouver boat show. Vancouver’s virtual boat show is being presented Feb 24-27 with free registration. It offers the chance to explore virtual exhibitor spaces without the hassle of crowds. Schedule a meeting, join a live chat, email your questions, and browse the products. Also, enjoy exclusive live content, live Q&A sessions with industry pros, and attend online workshops and seminars to learn all about the newest advances in the boating world. To register and receive more information, visit Vancouverboatshow.ca

Boatinternational.com is hosting an ongoing virtual boat show, complete with vendor map, spotlight on the latest and greatest yachts, exclusive announcements, and videos detailing the hottest new boats from bow to stern.  Boating enthusiasts can also take part in live discussions, interviews and events hosted by Boat International journalists.

Sail Magazine has also jumped on board, with their digital boat show. With new vendors added daily, the show is growing continuously. Learn about product information, watch boat testing and watch web exclusive videos like Reaching Reality – a Sailing Docuseries. While not as interactive as the Vancouver Boat Show and Boat International’s Virtual Boat Show, there’s a wealth of information here.

A Boating Boom

With most people sticking to their family bubbles, boating has become a prime option for enjoying a holiday away from home. Gone is the option to go to Mexico or any other warm Caribbean destination. Instead, Canadian boaters and outdoor enthusiasts are embracing what’s available in our own back yard. Here on the West Coast, we have an endless array of islands and islets and calm, scenic channels. Our coast is also home to world-class diving and serious salt and freshwater fishing.

It’s not just happening here on Vancouver Island either. According to a recent Global News article, demand for a new boat is up across the country.

Some stats from The Toronto Show:

  •  80% of exhibitors experienced a significant increase in enquiries/sales from new boaters and first-time buyers
  • Half of all exhibitors saw an increase in inquiries/sales from customers under the age of 40
  • 40% of exhibitors estimated an overall sales increase by 15% – 25%
  • Pontoons, bowriders, and personal watercraft like Sea-Doos and WaveRunners were some of the top-selling categories in 2020

If you want to be on the water this summer, don’t hesitate. At Van Isle Marina, we are happy to connect in person for a tour of our top-of-the-line Pursuit Boats. We also have a wide variety of previously loved yachts and cruisers, ideal for everything from a quick cruise to a weeks-long adventure. Come down and visit us at our world-class sales dock or get in touch with our brokers by phone or email. We look forward to helping make your boating dreams a reality!

Different Types of Powerboats

Types of Powerboats

28 Motorboat Types – from Aft-Cabin to Walkaround

If you’ve been browsing our listings for new and used boats, you likely have questions about sizes, styles, makes and models. Because the powerboat market is constantly changing, many categories of powerboats can share characteristics with another type of boat or yacht.

As Western Canada’s yachting experts, we can help make sense of it all.

Whether you need a new dinghy/tender for your yacht, are looking for your very first boat, or would like to upgrade from a cruiser to a luxury model by Pursuit, read on to choose the right boat for your needs.

Powerboat Types

Aft-Cabin: The aft-cabin boat has a stateroom on the stern of the boat. This type of boat has a ladder or stairs to access the cockpit as well as the helm. It is also a flybridge but there is a stateroom located on the stern of the boat.  The inboard engine is centrally located, generally underneath the living room floor.

Bass Boat: Primarily used for fishing on lakes and rivers, this a type of boat with a flat deck, low freeboard and a shallow draft.

Types of Powerboats - Bay BoatBay Boat: The Bay Boat has a low-freeboard centre console and is designed for use near shore and around coastal waters.

Bowrider: A Bowrider is a powerboat with seating in the bow area with room for eight or more people. The v-shaped hull creates a smooth ride inland or in coastal waters.

Cabin Cruiser: Any motorboat with sleeping accommodations within can be called a cabin cruiser. These are perfect for relaxed cruises and have many modern amenities like heaters and air conditioners. Ideal for coastal waters, cabin cruisers have a deep v-shaped hull and a secure drive shaft mechanism.

Catamaran: With dual hulls, a catamaran is more stable than other types of power boats, but it’s also much pricier. Catamarans are a crossover powerboat, with sails as well as engines.

Types of Powerboats - Center Console

Center Console: A powerboat with the steering station in the centre of the boat. These crafts generally have an outboard motor and are perfect for ocean cruising with larger waves.

Convertible: A larger sized boat with a flybridge built on top of the cabin and an open cockpit aft. These are favoured for weekend cruising.

Cuddy Cabin: A powerboat with a relatively small, no frills cabin on its bow section. Good as a weekender for cruising the coast.

Deck Boat: This has a flat, open deck plan and no accommodations below decks. Most deck boats are box shaped, creating more forward deck space.

Dinghy: Using small outboard motors, a dinghy or tender can be inflatable or hard-sided. They’re used for transporting people and their belongings to and from shore.
Types of Powerboats - Dual Console

Dual Console: A boat with twin dashboards, separated by a walk-through that accesses a forward cockpit or seating area.

Express Boat: A sleek boat with a steering station on deck level, no flybridge, and a cabin that is forward and lower than the helm.

Fishing Boat:  Easily maneuverable, most fishing boats usually have a front bow, features like rod holders, live well compartments and trolling motors.

Flats Boat: This is a skiff used for fishing in shallow-water areas.

Flybridge:  Boat with a helm above the interior cabin that is accessed by stairs or a ladder. This provides more vision while navigating the boat and adds more living space underneath.

Houseboat: Built on a barge-like hull, a houseboat acts as a floating RV. Also known as float houses, houseboats can be bare bones or loaded with luxurious extras and are ideal for entertaining and enjoying water sports. Some can be used for cruising, while others are moored in place.

Jon Boat: Usually made of aluminum, a Jon boat is a small utilitarian boat with a flat bottom.

Megayacht: A yacht exceeding 200 feet and reaching up to 500 feet, megayachts are custom-made and accessible to only the wealthiest in the world. Featuring luxuries like large swimming pools, heliport, 3 or more guest rooms and room for a full crew of around 30 people, megayachts are decadent floating resorts.

Pontoon Boat: Built on two or more aluminum pontoons, a pontoon boat has a flat deck and a perimeter fence and is most often used for tour groups.

Rigid Inflatable Boat: Also known as RIBs, a Rigid Inflatable Boat is an inflatable boat built around a rigid hull made of fibreglass or aluminum.

Types of Powerboats - Sedan BridgeSedan Bridge:  In a Sedan Bridge, the cockpit is almost at the same level as the boat’s aft deck. This means that there’s no need to climb stairs or a ladder to reach the cockpit. The Sedan Bridge and Sport Bridge are similar in that they both offer easy access to the cockpit.

Skiff: Skiffs have a flat bottom and pointed bow, making them ideal for navigating shallow water. In many different sizes and lengths, skiffs are easy to operate with a basic steering console.

Superyacht: A superyacht is a yacht that is over 100 feet but less than 200 feet long. With multiple accommodations and multiple decks, a living room, galley and lounges, it’s meant for hosting many guests and enjoying fun in the sun out on the water.

Skylounge: A Flybridge with an enclosed cockpit, the Skylounge offers exceptional comfort for the captain and people accompanying the captain. With air conditioning, a sofa, a full bar, tv and many other amenities, the cockpit is fully protected from the elements.

Types of Powerboats - Trawler

Trawler: A long-distance recreational vessel that resembles commercial trawlers, this boat is ruggedwith a displacement hull and efficient engine(s). Made for long-haul cruising with minimal horsepower and fuel consumption, trawlers have all modern facilities on board for optimal comfort.

PWC (Personal Watercraft): PWC boats, also known as water scooters and jet skis, are designed for fun and adventure. Sit down models are meant for two or more people, while stand up models are meant for one rider.

Walkaround: Built with side decks around the cabin, a walkaround boat lets passengers easily walk around the cabin and up to the foredeck.

 

At Van Isle Marina, our team of certified brokers specialize in matching skippers like you with their perfect boat. If we don’t have it in stock, we will search the world over to locate it. To get started on your search, browse our boats and yachts for sale, call us, or visit our world-class sales dock at 2320 Harbour Rd in Sidney, BC.

The benefits of outboard motors

The Benefits of an Outboard Engine

Today’s Outboard Motors Aren’t What You Might Expect—They’re Even Better

When shopping for a new boat, you’re going to need the right engine to make your time on the water as carefree as possible. While you might automatically think that an inboard will be quieter and more powerful, you might be surprised to know that today’s outboard motors are extremely convenient. They’re designed to be quieter, more fuel efficient and more flexible than the loud, gas-guzzling 2/3 stroke engines of the past. While idling at the dock, you might even forget that your 4 stroke gas outboards are still running.

benefits of outboard motors - pursuit boats

Adding one, two, or even a triple threat of outboards to your boat lets yachts over 25 feet power through even the toughest ocean currents while maintaining a top speed. Depending on what you’ll use your new boat for, the pros of an outboard engine might just make you reconsider an inboard engine package on your next pleasure craft or fishing vessel.

“There’s been a shift in the market … that has seen a lot of customers move into the outboard-style product primarily because of its performance, ease of maintenance and all the other great things that outboards give you.”- David Glenn, director of marketing at S2 Yachts.

Some Key Benefits of Outboard Motors

Lower Initial Investment

benefits of outboard motors - twin yamahas

Outboard engines generally cost less up front and the newer engines are made to last anywhere from 2,500-3,000 hours. That’s a lot of time spent enjoying your boat! For what’s most often a lower upfront sticker price, this can be a huge pro for many boaters who might want to spend more on on-board features and upgrades (there are plenty of customized and upgrade options on our Pursuit Boats including the option to upgrade to Yamaha outboards with Digital Electronic Controls (DEC.))

Better Versatility

This is a huge selling point for many of our customers, since the ability to lift motors up allows boats to squeeze into shallower spots and be able to move easily from ocean to rivers and lakes and back again. Being able to reduce your draft (the depth of the boat’s keel in the water) lets you enjoy a wider variety of waterways without worrying about getting stuck in the shallows.

One of the biggest advantages of lifting the engine out of the water when not in use, it keeps sensitive parts, including the propeller in good working condition by not being constantly immersed in salt water.

More Room on Board

Outboard motors are mounted on the transom. Without the real estate needed for an inboard and all its components, you can enjoy quite a bit of extra space on the transom. This means additional bench seating, more space to clean your catch, more room for water sports equipment and greater overall real estate on deck. The majority of our Pursuit models come equipped with folding transom seats with integrated storage and Pursuit’s patented backrest for comfort and convenience.

Easier Access for Maintenance

It needs to be said that outboard motors do need just as much maintenance as inboards since they have similar components like pumps and water-cooling systems. They require filter and fluid changes just like inboards do, there are fuel lines, tanks and many other components that need to be kept up to par. The big difference here is that outboard motors are freely accessible and you can always see the engines. If you have multiple outboards mounted, your maintenance time and costs will increase since each individual engine needs to be looked after, but generally, outboards tend to be lower maintenance.

More Efficient Power

The newer outboard motors are extremely powerful with better fuel economy, faster performance and more efficient power. Compared with in-board propulsion systems, using multiple outboard engines creates more speed due to the positive power to weight ratio.

Modern Technology

With today’s modern outboards, the skipper can sit comfortably at the helm and control all the outboards using Digital Electronic Controls, joystick steering, autopilot, even automatic trim. Cruising with outboards on a single console, double console or offshore model is every bit as relaxed as cruising with the same (or better!) performance you’d find with an inboard model.

benefits of outboard engines - pursuit boats

Since 1977, Pursuit Boats have been designed and manufactured with extreme pride and care in the USA. Hand laminated hulls, one of the quietest cabins on the market and luxurious extras like custom fabrics and solid wood accents are just a few of the yacht-calibre features of these vessels.

With fifteen different boats across four categories ranging in size from 23 to 42 feet, you can choose from Offshore, Centre Console, Dual Console and Sport models, all powered by dependable Yamaha outboards. Each Pursuit model comes with attractive warranties, such as:

  • Ultra-premium gelcoat backed by a five-year hull blister warranty
  • Transferable five-year hull and deck structural warranty; and
  • Transferable two-year component warranty.

 

Looking to upgrade to more power and impressive technology to make the most of your next adventure? At Van Isle Marina, we’re pleased to be the exclusive Western Canada dealer for Pursuit Boats and we want to match you up with your dream yacht. From cruiser to megayacht, contact us or visit our world-class sales dock at 2320 Harbour Rd in beautiful Sidney, BC today.