Watch Out for These Common Boating Mistakes

All of us make mistakes from time to time. But boating mistakes tend to be a lot more expensive than other mistakes. Here are a few common missteps boaters often make. Keep them in mind and hopefully you’ll avoid making the same mistakes.

  1. Not putting your drive unit up. The last thing you want to hear after a fun day of boating is the sound of your outdrive dragging across pavement. So, after loading your boat onto your trailer, always remember to put your drive unit up.
  2. Overloading your boat. Boaters sometimes ignore their vessel’s maximum load capacity. That’s a bad idea. When your boat is overloaded, it is more likely to swamp or capsize. Always stick to your boat’s load capacity.
  3. Forgetting to install your drain plug. Always double-check that your boat’s drain plug is in. You don’t want your boat filling up with water right after you launch it.
  4. Not having enough line. A common mistake – especially among novice boaters – is not using enough line to anchor. Use roughly six times the depth of the water, plus the distance from the water to where the anchor attaches to the bow. In rough conditions, use even more.
  5. Not updating your charts. Storms and erosion are constantly reshaping coastal waters. And electronics have a way of failing at the worst time possible. Make sure you always carry up-to-date paper nautical charts onboard your boat.