Winter Houseboat Storage - any tips on how to winterize your boat?

by Mark

Typical houseboat storage shrink warp.

Typical houseboat storage shrink warp.

It's time for winter houseboat storage, and wondering how to winterize your boat? I don't want the cold weather to cause any damage to our houseboat.

The marina, or should I say the boat storage yard wants to charge $68 an hour, is there some things that I can do myself?

The houseboat has two V8 engines, Mercruiser outdrives, and a portable generator. Should I have the boat covered with the blue shrink wrap?

We're very sad about closing up the houseboat for the winter, it was our first summer with it, and we loved it. So glad that we bought a houseboat.

Any tips are greatly appreciated. Mark & Heather.

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Reply - Answer
Well Mark & Heather, glad to hear that you enjoyed you're first season with the houseboat. Unfortunately in some areas, the houseboating season must come to an end :(

The reason behind winterizing a houseboat for the winter is to reduce the risk for damage from the elements.

For a good overview, have a look at the link for Outdoor Winter Storage Tips for Houseboats

Spend the time now to prepare you're houseboat for the winter, and come spring, everything should be easier and quicker to launch her.

Lastly, hopefully some of our readers will share and post comments about their winter houseboat storage experiences. Feel free to use the "Click here to post comments." link found at the bottom of this page.

Thanks again for sharing, IAN from all-about-houseboats

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Comments for Winter Houseboat Storage - any tips on how to winterize your boat?

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Houseboat Covers
by: Stasia G. Lunn

Though it is a sad to cover a houseboat, it is a must for people living in some areas. I used to own a houseboat and never wanted to cover it which led to formation of rust, unfortunately making me to sell it.

Storage is the best way to contain any excess humidity and irrespective of the color covers should be placed over the houseboats.

Eliminate Winter Houseboat Storage
by: Glenn

Sounds silly but come to Australia and you can use your houseboat all year round, it really is the best place to be.

Winter storage tips for houseboats on Lake Cumberland
by: Bill M

I am making some mental notes about what I need to do to winterize my recently purchased houseboat. I bought a houseboat during the in Lake Cumberland in water boat show in August and closed on it Mid-September.

I am told that the lake does not freeze ?so not to worry about the outdrives?, correct?

The boat is in a covered slip at Jamestown Marina. The rear 1/3 of the boat extends past the roof area however I don?t see that being much of a problem unless there is an issue of snow and ice sliding off of the roof onto the boat.

Does anyone know if that is an issue? I know a few years ago the roof collapsed under the weight of heavy wet snow and did some damage to the hot tub and railing.

I have heard that engine compartment heaters are an option for the engine/generator space instead of winterizing the engines. I heard they work well but that sounds a little risky to me.

How long can the electricity be out in this area due to a storm and how long does it take before an engine block cracks at freezing temperatures?

I plan on leaving the cabin heat on all winter and turning it down to 45 to 50*. I suspect that will help with any cabin humidity issues and maintain a better interior environment over the winter months.

I will be turning the water off and draining and blowing the water lines. What do you do with the marine toilets? Do I flush a gallon of RV antifreeze down each of them? Or do I need to do more?

I plan on cycling a gallon or two thru the cloths and dish washer and hit all the sinks and shower drains with about a half gallon of RV antifreeze each.

I assume I should turn the frig and ice makers off and prop the doors open, correct? Anything else I might be forgetting?

Thank you for any help you can extend.

Houseboat winter storage vents
by: Gary

Yes the shrink wrap is a good idea, it will protect your houseboat from snow and ice laying on it and causing damage, however it is a good idea to have a vent put in, it to allow it to breath so moisture doesn't build up under the wrap.

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