What Should a First-Time Boat Owner Know?

January 28, 2021 9:21 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Owning a boat is a joy, as well as a serious responsibility. Between boat maintenance, learning to operate it, getting the right insurance and other related tasks, there is a steep learning curve. Luckily, once you’ve mastered these basics, you’ll hardly need to give them a second thought. Here’s everything you need to know when you’re about to buy a boat and use a marina in Lewiston, CA:

  • Know the safety rules: Boating, like driving a car or truck, requires special safety rules to protect you and other people on the water. Read as much as you can about your specific boat, its capacity and any special safety considerations. The more diligently you operate and maintain your boat, the safer it will be.
  • Get the right insurance: Insurance is important, whether you plan to take your boat out every weekend or just a few times per year. If something happens, you’ll need the financial backup to repair or replace your boat (among other potential consequences). Research boat insurance to get the best deal for your individual needs.
  • Learn about local boating laws: No matter where you’re taking your boat, you need to be aware of the local boating rules and regulations—ignorance isn’t an excuse. One important thing to check before you buy the boat is the hull identification number (HIN). If it appears to be altered in any way, the boat may have legal issues, such as being stolen property or otherwise illegally acquired. Check the paper trail to verify that it’s a safe and legal purchase.
  • Understand how to control your boat: Driving a car and steering a boat are two totally different skills. Take boating classes so you’ll understand how to independently operate your new boat.
  • Know the language: Boating classes will probably help teach you the new vocabulary, but it’s worth spending some time reading about boats so you get familiar with the language. You’ll need to know your bow from stern and port from starboard, at the very least.
  • Have a boating checklist: Every experienced boater has a checklist of what to bring before an outing. For example, bringing GPS, life jackets, towels, sealed plastic bags and other practical items will eventually become second nature, but writing out a checklist is helpful at first.
  • Figure out where you’ll store the boat: Where will you keep your new vessel? Harboring the boat can be expensive, which is why many owners prefer to tow theirs on a trailer. Figure out these logistics before buying.
  • Know when to avoid boating: Always be aware of the weather, and know what kind of conditions are too dangerous for taking your boat out on the lake.
  • Learn how to maintain and repair your boat: Finally, learn how to maintain your boat. Not only will it extend its lifespan, it’ll also save you a bundle on repair costs.

When you’re looking for a marina in Lewiston, CA, visit Trinity Alps Marina today. We offer a full slate of boat services and would be glad to help you get acquainted with caring for your vessel.

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