When people think about boat improvements, the first thing that comes to their mind is having to spend a lot of cash. If you have just purchased your pontoon boat or you are on a budget, spending money on improvements may be impossible. However, what if we told you that you could implement some free boat improvements?
Cheap boat improvements, which can make your life easier every time you put on your boat shoes, are available. In this article, you will get to learn about all the cheap and free boat improvements you can take advantage of.
Affordable and Free Boat Improvements You Can Use
1. Wet-Sand Your Boat’s Bottom to Increase Speed
Making your boat’s bottom as slick as possible can increase its speed by approximately 1 to 2 mph. As you probably already know, rough surfaces generally cause speed-sapping turbulence while moving through the water.
When wet-sanding your boat, you will need 220- and 400-grit sandpaper. Begin with the 220-grit sandpaper, working your way from the stem to stern. Sand the boat’s bottom lightly.
Forget about using the circular sanding motion which is used when removing paint from a boat. The goal is to simply smooth the paint out and not to remove it. Make each stroke parallel to the boat’s centerline.
After you are done with the 220-grit sandpaper, repeat the process with the 400-grit sandpaper. Smooth out every noticeable imperfection or bump.
2. Reduce the Weight
This is one of the free boat improvements capable of helping you increase your boat’s speed by approximately 1 to 3 mph. Your boat propellers will have greater ability to propel your boat forward if it is lighter.
Unless you will be spending days on your boat seat, meaning you will be going on an extended cruise, you should pump your freshwater tank until it is approximately 25% full. Get rid of any gear you may not need and also pump the holding tank dry.
3. Interface Your GPS and VHF
If you already own both the marine GPS and VHF marine radio, this should be another cost-free boat improvement. When the VHF radio and GPS are not interfaced, they deny you the DSC capabilities.
Having active DSC makes it much easier for the Coastguard to know who you are and where you are the moment you hit the boat’s panic button and start transmitting. This is a huge boost to your boating safety.
To interface the VHF with a modern GPS, all you will have to do is attach the NMEA output wire of one equipment to the NMEA input of the other. If the devices are made within a couple of years of each other, they should work properly with the NMEA 2000 and NMEA 0183 protocol.
To figure out whether the GPS and VHF can speak in the same language, you can use Google. If the plug ends do not match, which is common with devices produced by different manufacturers, all you will have to do is splice a couple of color-coded wires together.
4. Improve Your Lines
This is one of the cheap boat improvements you can implement on your dock lines and anchor rode. After years of docking and anchoring your boat, you will end up with raggedy lines. If you follow the steps below, you won’t have to spend your cash on new lines:
Step 1: Fill a 5-gallon bucket halfway with warm water. Next, add a cup of fabric softener.
Step 2: Coil your lines into the bucket. Leave the lines to soak for approximately 2 to 3 hours.
Step 3: Finally, find a cool, fully-shaded, and well-ventilated area where you can lay the lines out and allow them to dry.
After this treatment, your lines should be pliable, better-looking and soft. You may need to check the ends of the lines for fraying. If you determine that the ends are frayed, cut the stragglers off and then whip the ends or make use of the burn-and-tape method to keep all the braids together.
5. Get Rid of the Holding Tank and Toilet Stink
Without good ventilation, the anaerobic bacteria get an ideal environment to grow, multiply, and continue making your life on your boat miserable. The anaerobic bacteria are the main reason your marine toilet and holding tank stinks. By simply improving the ventilation, you should be able to get rid of the anaerobic bacteria and hence eliminate the stinky situation.
While increasing the vent and hoses diameter could help you improve the ventilation, you will end up spending too much of your money. One of the cheap boat improvements you can take advantage of is looking for bends, arches, and sags in the vent lines. These reduce the ability of the vent to breathe. By trimming the extra length and straightening the runs, you should have the ability to get rid of the odors.
6. Water Filter
The majority of boaters don’t like the idea of drinking water straight from the water tank available on the boat. The boaters think that the water may be contaminated or it may feature bacteria. The boaters often carry bottled waters, which is an added expense and usually takes too much storage space.
Installing a water filter between the gallery tap and the tank is a more cost-effective solution. Contrary to what you might think, you won’t need a fancy or complicated filter system. All you will need is an RV water filter.
The RV water filter features a charcoal element capable of removing the chlorine taste, germs, and other contaminants. By simply searching “RV water filter” online, you should be able to get a wide range of filter systems. You can then choose a filter system that works for your boat.
Globo Surf Overview
Boat improvements do not have to cost boaters a fortune. This article proves that. With the cheap and free boat improvements outlined in this article, you should be able to make your boat trips more fun without breaking your bank account.
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- Boat Trailer Maintenance
- Coast Guard Requirements For Boats Under 16 Feet
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- Boat Voltmeter
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- 12 Small Boat Projects that Made Large Improvements, Sea-trek.blogspot.com