I know it's been a while since I wrote one of these. In fact, a lot has changed since the last time I did....except the weather. It's still freezing cold and snowing. On the first of April. Snow. I hate Indiana sometimes. Regardless, it is April, which can only mean that boating season is nearly here. How ready are you?
We're ready to go for the craziness that is "spring launch". Our address has changed, our building has changed, but one thing remains the same...our 3 weeks notice policy. Every year, we require a 3 weeks notice to have your boat summerized and delivered. This is not a new policy that sprung upon everyone. This has been our standard for 10 years now. I know someone is going to call the week before Memorial Day and ask us to have them ready to go for the holiday weekend. IT CAN NOT, AND WILL NOT, HAPPEN.
"But...but...but Casey's Cove, you're being so mean!" On the contrary, we aren't. We are constantly booked up to 3 weeks out. We are just, simply, unable to do it. We have manpower issues like many of you that own or manage a business. Marine mechanics are a commodity around here. It's tough to find them right now. We do everything we can just to meet the 3-week notice demands. And it is only fair to our customers who were diligent enough to prepare accordingly.
Now that the business side of the conversation is over, let's get down to the fun stuff! Who is ready for spring?! The grass is greening, the trees are budding, and the snow is falling (wait, that is still not right). Ahh, anyway. We're excited!
Here are some tips to help make your boating experience better this spring.
TEST YOUR BATTERY
Many people think that because they charged the battery up, threw it in the boat, and it fired right up, then they're ready to go for summer. Not always is that the case. Batteries can take what is called a "surface charge". Your battery charger puts a ton of amps to the battery immediately. However, that charge can quickly drain if your battery can't handle the load that the starter puts on it immediately. The best thing to do is charge your battery and load test it. We offer that service here at Casey's Cove for FREE! Bring your battery in after you charge it, have us load test it, and if it fails the load test, then pick up a brand new Crown Marine Battery here with a 2-year warranty.
CHECK/CHANGE YOUR FLUIDS
Did you change your oil & lower unit lube in the fall? If you didn't, do it now. Don't skip it. If you did, you really ought to check it out. Seals, gaskets, etc. can fail over the winter. If you store your boat outside in the grass/gravel, then you might not even see that oil leaked out all over. It's cheap insurance just to give it a check.
RUN YOUR BOAT ON THE HOSE
I can't tell you how many people say "it barked off in the driveway real quick" when they put their boat down our old ramp for the first time in the spring. Well, as soon as you put that old girl in the water, there's more going on with that engine. The exhaust has back pressure, the water pump is loaded now, and the prop has a load to it. It is strongly recommended to run it on a hose (at low water pressure to test the water pump) to at least let it get some runtime in before you make everyone in line at the ramp angry. Need a set of motor flush muffs? Stop in at Casey's Cove and get some. We are stocked and ready for spring!
CHECK YOUR LIGHTS
We sell a ton of light bulbs, light fixtures, and fuses on July 3rd every year. The reason why? Well, because you didn't check your lights before you launched. I promise you, it is way easier to do it when it's on dry land rather than 30 minutes before the fireworks show on the lake while your wife is yelling at you for not getting it done sooner! Save everyone the trouble and just do it before you put it in!
CHECK YOUR TRAILER
Everyone has seen that one guy break down on the side of a tight lake lane looking under his boat at the trailer trying to figure out what that "grinding" is. That's your bearings, buddy. When was the last time you greased them? Oh never, well now you're in trouble. People are yelling at you, cursing at you, flipping you the bird, and you just feel ashamed of yourself. Air up your tires, grease your bearings, check for sloppy bearings, and CHECK YOUR LIGHTS. Who wants a ticket for now replacing the $2 bulb in the brake lights? Not me. Not you.
"But TJ this all seems so hard..." I know, my friend. That's why we're here. We do all of this for you in the summerization process. Just give us a call (WITH 3 WEEKS' NOTICE), and we will get you in line for summerization. Talk to any one of our friendly team members to get on the schedule today!