G-Floor® Outdoor & Marine on a pontoon boat

For most of us in the USA, March is the stepping stone to warm weather. We get some nice days, and we get some not so nice… Use the nice days to get a head start on the boating season! This month we are going to focus on some things you can do to get your boat ready to launch so you can enjoy a longer boating season. 

1. Upgrade your flooring.

There are countless pontoons in this country that are still rolling with carpet. Carpet was the only game in town for decades, but now, much like your old flip phone, it needs to go. It's the single best improvement you can make to your aging boat. Sparkling new G-Floor boat flooring will make your boat look beautiful, add value to it, and reduce maintenance for years to come. If you haven’t installed boat flooring before, take some time and watch some videos on how to replace carpet with polyvinyl flooring. If you have reasonable mechanical skills and the help of a few friends, you might be surprised at the results. If you are not comfortable attempting this task, make an appointment with your dealer and be sure to specify G-Floor for your boat flooring.


2. Clean your pontoons.

Over time, the aluminum on pontoons tends to dull. If you are like me and you leave your boat in the water all summer, you have lots of marine build up below the waterline. With a few hours of labor and the right cleaning products, you can bring a nice shine back to your grimy vessel. There are several products such as Toon-Brite or Star Brite aluminum cleaner that will ease the process.


3. Treat your seats.

I am a big fan of regular vinyl treatment. Now is the time to give your seats a thorough cleaning followed by some vinyl protectant. I have always had great luck cleaning and treating with the various 303 products. Personally, I stay away from Magic Erasers. I've heard too many stories. There are some great products on the market for removing mildew that has penetrated the vinyl. I know several people who swear by Miracle Mist. Take care of your vinyl seats and they will last a long time.


4. Check your ropes and fenders.

It always drives me crazy to see boats with old or mismatching ropes and fenders. If your ropes are faded, mismatched or look like a beaver chewed on them, then bust out a few bucks and replace them! Fenders, much like the ropes, begin to show their age over time. Replacing them is easy and will really improve the look of your boat.


5. Do a safety equipment check!

 Is your fire extinguisher fully charged?  Do you have an adequate number of life vests? Do your lights and horn work? Now is time to replace or repair any of these items.


6. Is your gas good?

It is not uncommon to carry over some gas from season to season. Hopefully, you planned ahead and treated your gas with fuel stabilizer. If you forgot to do this, you might want to consider disposing of the fuel in your tank. If you choose to dispose of the gas, make sure you use a pump or siphon that is designed to handle gas. In my area, I can take old gas to the county Hazmat disposal site, and they will take the gas free of charge. Bad gas is a huge cause of engine issues. Do yourself a favor and always burn good gas.


7. Service your engine.

If you didn't have your engine serviced over the winter, now is the time to do it. Most dealerships are probably booked way out, so get on their list now. With outboard engines, it's important to follow the manufacturer's guidelines on servicing. Changing oil and changing the water pump are the best ways to ensure a long motor life and smooth summer operations. I change oil in my motors every year and replace the water pump every other year. Better safe than sorry!


8. Give it a good wash

The last thing I like to do before launching is to give the boat a good cleaning. I pull everything out from under the seats and wipe out this area. I also like to hand wash the inside and the outside of the fencing using a mild soap mix. I'm a believer in waxing the outside of the fencing. I use a marine specific wax. If your boat has vinyl decals, you might verify that the wax will not damage the decals.


Knock these off your checklist in March and get ready to relax and enjoy the many months of boating fun to come!