Make Your Old Boats Look Brand New with This Handy Guide

Maintaining a boat can be tedious. Understandably, some boat owners may have neglected their duties and let the boat fall into disarray. Alternatively, you could have bought an old boat on the secondhand market looking to restore and add it to your fleet. In this article, we’ll guide you towards making your beat-up boat look good as new.

Catalog all that needs to be done

Adequate preparation is key to successful restorations. Look over the boat’s every nook and cranny to note what repairs or replacements you need to do. Request assistance from a professional if you think you need it, as their input will be valuable in determining what steps to take.

Draft a budget

Once you have a to-do list, time to draft your shopping list. If you want a wooden deck, buy decay-resistant woods like teak or white oak, sealant, and wooden deck paint. If there is severe rust, dirt, or mold buildup you need to buy specialized cleaning solutions or rent a pressure washer. If you need to get the motor and fuel lines fixed, you’ll need to find a shop to do it for you.

These first two steps are important because at this point you will have a rough estimate of the project’s cost and duration. This will help you determine if it’s worth pursuing. If you’re looking to restore the boat for personal use, ask yourself: “Is it worth the time and money I spend to restore my old boat, or should I just buy a new one?” If you’re restoring the boat to sell it off, compare your expenses to the prices on the market. If your costs add up to the price of a new boat, it may not be worth it. No one will buy a secondhand boat if they can get a new one for the same price.

Find somewhere you can work

Repairing a boat requires a large space that is well ventilated and isolated from other people. You will be making lots of noise and some paints and solvents could produce fumes that are toxic and unpleasant. You will also be producing dust and filings which could make a mess in your garage. Ideally, you should work in an open area with access to power and no homes or people nearby.

Start with the essentials

The first thing you need to do is ensure the boat is working smoothly. If there are motor problems or fuel leaks, those need to be addressed first. Then you can start dealing with the exterior. Replace rotting wood and seal any cracks in the fiberglass. Only then can you proceed with beautifying the boat with a new paint job or upholstery.

Restoring your boat is a challenging yet fulfilling hobby. However, it can also cost you more than you expected if you’re not careful. Do not hesitate to leave certain steps to specialists or professionals. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you may end up inadvertently causing more damage to the boat, which could lead to more expensive repairs.