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Author Topic:   Winterizing tips
Mark Gallagher posted 11-05-2000 07:30 PM ET (US)   Profile for Mark Gallagher   Send Email to Mark Gallagher  
Here is a procedure I've followed and thought may be helpful to new Whaler owners.
It is not fully comprehensive and I would recommend following particular model and engine manuals for specifics and optional features: That being said...I change my two fuel filters one spin on water seperating and one in line under engine cowl.I fill my fuel tank then add OMC 2+4 fuel conditioner to keep fuel frsh over winter months, this also prevents fuel varnish and gumming. Next I take my boat out for a few mile ride to circulate the newly treated gas and get it into the fuel lines and carbs. After the engine is warmed up I use OMC engine tuner in a can and attach to service port on primer soleniod by carbs. Following instructions on can I spray this chemical cleaner into the engine in several bursts then to engine stalls. I let the engine sit for an hour and solution cleans to internal combustion parts, pistons, rings, etc. Do not allow to soak too long as this stuff is strong!. Now I go for another ride to completely burn this stuff out of my engine. The last full throttle pass of the year is always sad. Next I put the boat on the trailer and drain the lower unit oil while it's hot. It will run out faster this way. Always look for water, milky color or burnt fluid. This could be telltale of lower unit problems. I refill with fresh gear oil of specified type. Next clean and wax boat. I usually removed gear, electronics, etc since my boat will be stored covered out doors. In the spring you'll be ready to go! I always thoroughly check my trailer in the spring and inspect/grease bearing and set tire pressures. Preventative maintenance is truly less costly!! These are a few things I do and there are certainly more things specific to your own boat but hopefully these are helpful. On a final note - my seven year old son made the final runs of the year on my Whaler with me sitting at his side. He has been on it since he was two and now knows how to start the boat, run it, adjust the trim, read the guages, etc. Most importantly he understands safety and respect for the water. I would never let him operate with out me right by his side but in a few years he will be there! Another Whaler fan in the making....Mark
Mark Gallagher posted 11-05-2000 08:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mark Gallagher  Send Email to Mark Gallagher     
I forgot to mention that after the last run to burn off the engine tuner I return the engine to idle and spray OMC engine fogger into the service port on the primer soleniod.
This oil fogs the internal engine parts and protects them over the winter storage months.

Also, now may be the time to replace your water pump impeller, spark plugs, dry rotted hoses, fuel lines etc... Mark

vermilionwhalers posted 08-19-2002 04:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Thanks for the advice, Mark. I'm surprised no one replied so far...

I was looking for information when to winterize. In particular, am I safe using a boat into November after temps drop below freezing in northern climes? Or are you supposed to winterize before freezing? We're talking an outboard here.

Thanks for any advice or tips.
Doug Johnson

Jay A posted 08-19-2002 10:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jay A    
For my 1975 40hp Merc I have a large barrel with fresh water being fed by a garden hose,run the engine and remove the fuel line from the tank and let the engine "conk" out. I then remove the spark plugs and add Mystery oil down the cylinders.And replace the lower unit oil. In the spring I get out the barrel again,hook up the fuel line and install last years spark plugs and start her up. Once the Mystery oil burns up (lots of blue smoke) I replace the spark plugs with new ones. It's worked for me! For my big boat I have a 2000 Suzuki 200hp,I have the dealer do his thing. He calls it "springizing"! All I have to do in the spring is launch and go!
Dick posted 08-19-2002 10:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dick  Send Email to Dick     
Get yourself a flushing attachment for the garden hose, I like the Merc one but a Tempo will do, much easier than using a barrel full of water.

My winterization procedure.
Add fuel stabalizer to fuel tank and let it sit for a couple hours.
Start engine and let it warm up.
Disconnect fuel line and let engine run untill out of fuel.
Drain lower unit lube, engine oil and oil filter (Merc 4 Stroke) replace all.
Remove spark plugs, spray fogging oil into cylinders crank engine over and replace spark plugs.
Fuel filter/filters can be replace now or in the spring.
Store the motor in the full down position so no water is trapped in the lower unit.
Spring start up is no problem and with this procedure new plugs are not necessary every spring.

I lived in Alaska for 17 years and most of the time owned outboards, never did a winterization and never had a motor fail because of it. I do it now just because I am older, wiser (?}, and the newer engines need a little more TLC

grandmufti posted 08-19-2002 11:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for grandmufti  Send Email to grandmufti     
Isn't it a little early to be talking about winterizing?
Jay A posted 08-19-2002 11:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jay A    
Dick, I had a flushing attachment for the garden hose, however, To keep the neighbors happy I went with the barrel.A whole lot quieter! 30 gallons of water makes a great muffler! By the way, that 1975 Merc, I bought new in 1975! In 1976 or '77 I didn't replace the spark plugs and while I was about 8 miles offshore they fouled up. I managed to get in doing about 2-3mph in 3 foot seas. Since then I always changed them in the spring. A few more bucks for peace of mind ain't a bad idea.
JoeH posted 08-20-2002 02:09 AM ET (US)     Profile for JoeH  Send Email to JoeH     
Gentelmen, also see last years thread(s)under Repairs/Mods: Winterizing the whaler(not the engine) Jimh 10/31/01 and Winterizing outboard engine Jimh 11/02/01. I can't do that cool link thing, sorry. Still, it does seem to be rushing the end of the season a bit for mid/late August. Joe
Gep posted 08-20-2002 11:51 AM ET (US)     Profile for Gep  Send Email to Gep     
Stop already! You guys are really bumming me out with this wintererizing stuff:)
vermilionwhalers posted 08-20-2002 12:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Hey thanks for the info and sorry about the early post on a rather depressing subject. However I have to make reservations at a resort now for anniversary in early November and was wondering if I would still be able to Whale. If not I will just get a condo somewhere and light a nice fire....

It would seem I am okay using the boat into freezing season as long as I am careful to stabilize gas and keep outboard motor full down to drain any excess water.

Doug Johnson

where2 posted 08-20-2002 12:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for where2  Send Email to where2     
Looking forward to reading many more winterizing stories. Living in South Florida, I always find them quite amusing. It's still very much summer here! 90F today.
Jay A posted 08-20-2002 08:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jay A    
where2: Up here in MA. we had 12 straight days of 90 degree heat. It finnaly broke today...a cool 74 degrees. The way it's been going,I wouldn't be surprised to see palm trees starting to sprout!
newt posted 08-20-2002 10:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for newt  Send Email to newt     
You can have your heat!!! It was actually over 100 at logan airport the other set a new record.

How do you Floridians cope with it?

Dick posted 08-20-2002 11:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dick  Send Email to Dick     
I was in Boston for the Whaler dealer meeting in August 1984 or 1985, don't remember which. It was hot and humid, the only thing that saved my life was the cold beer. BW decided it would be a nice touch to tote us around in an English double decker bus, no AC.
Great city, great lobster and an honor to have toured the factory.
jameso posted 08-21-2002 08:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for jameso  Send Email to jameso     
Always try to take the Whaler out for a spin between Christmas and New Years, does that count?
Jim Armstrong
andygere posted 08-21-2002 11:14 AM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Here's my winterizing procedure: Check the weather, go fishing. I use fuel stabilizer in every tank of gas. It's cheap insurance and there's never a problem if I go a few weeks without running the boat.
Swellmonster posted 08-21-2002 12:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for Swellmonster  Send Email to Swellmonster     
I just winterized my boat. I put in more ice in the beer cooler. :'
where2 posted 08-21-2002 05:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for where2  Send Email to where2     
I'll tell you how we cope with the heat after you tell me how to cope with Bangor Maine at Christmas! We'll be visiting my wife's family for Christmas this year, so no Christmas afternoon on the Whaler using the new hydro-slide or wake board this year. I'm looking for an LL Bean catalog and anything Wool to winterize me!
flwhaler posted 08-22-2002 09:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for flwhaler  Send Email to flwhaler     
How do floridians beat the heat? We keep my case crusin in the tuack!
Winterize...Ha! All winter means is the big grouper come closer to shore!


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