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1. Simple maintenance can save big. A little maintenance can save a lot of money in the end. The raw water pump impeller is a good example. This rubber, star-shaped part provides cooling water that keeps an engine from overheating. It is inexpensive, but needs to be replaced every year or two.

2. Pay attention to proper storage. T
ake extra care when storing a boat for the winter: Always remove the drain plug from the hull and leave the boat at a slight “bow up” elevation to allow water to drain. Why? Storms can tear covers or blow them off the boat completely. Plus, older or unsupported covers allow water to pool, which can damage engines and machinery.

3. Make sure policies are updated. A boat policy is different than an auto policy, which pays for total damages. Boat coverage has a limit of liability and pays only up to the market value or the agreed value of the boat (with endorsement). So when a new engine is installed or upgrades made, these items should be added to the value of the boat.

4. Save receipts for personal property. Keep receipts for any personal property stored on the vessel. Without receipts, the personal property will be valued at the same age as the boat—even if the boat is 10 years older than the items lost.

5. When in doubt, call. Report claims promptly. Make sure you call the insurer’s claims hotline as soon as they know that the boat is damaged—no matter how minor the damage appears.

Posted 12:38 PM  View Comments

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