Winterizing Your Boat | NW Explorations


Winterizing Your Boat

Just because summer is over, does not mean that you necessarily have to stop cruising. However, it is time to think about winterizing your boat for when it is not in use. Don’t discount winter cruising… all one needs is a warm cup of joe to nurse on deck, fleecy warm layers and the knowledge to un-winterize when you want to cruise and re- winterize when it’s time for storage.

With the summer crowds gone, and the crisp air and quietude permeating a wintery day, the season is idyllic for seeking serenity. Quiet coves and anchorages are more or less empty, places like Chatterbox Falls are stunning in winter, and remote hiking can still be on the agenda.

Even if your yacht won’t be out over the coming months, winterizing a yacht for the return of spring and summer is still essential. You’ll avoid a possible tidal wave of repairs and deterioration. Winter storms, freezing temperatures and neglect wreak havoc.

If you are in NW Explorations charter fleet, the good news is that we already include winterizing. If you’re not a charter client or service client with NWE, please book in advance (now) to have your yacht prepared.

At NWE, we have a team of maintenance professionals who can winterize your yacht to an exceptionally high level with their dedicated, thorough expertise. Our Yacht Services division can also keep your vessel on a schedule that ensures pristine condition year-round.

What can happen to your yacht over winter?

It could be anything from covers getting damp to freezing pipes. Here’s what the NWE Maintenance team does when it comes to winterizing a yacht:


  • Dehumidifiers and fans in the engine room and around the yacht keep the air moving to help prevent mold
  • Yachts are kept at a minimum of 50 – 60 degrees
  • The engine rooms are kept somewhat warm, fortunately for us, we have water that does not freeze during the winter months and actually stays in the forties, which helps insulate the engine room from freezing.


  • To avoid damage from freezing, we drain back all fresh and saltwater outlets on the outside of the yacht
  • Three-way valves, which allow the water to be drained back from outside points such as forward wash-down faucets, window washing outlets and back deck faucets are switched over to avoid freezing damage. If your yacht doesn’t have them, we can easily install them for you

Wind damage

  • Anything that could catch wind is moved (e.g. seat cushions, flags etc.)
  • Lines are doubled up and we then run weekly checks on the yachts to retighten the lines
  • We ensure the canvas is and remains buttoned down


  • Our winterization program includes washing your yacht once a month
  • Flushing out waste water systems

Power system failure

  • We make sure the power is on and ensure the Invert function on your inverter is turned off
  • If the power goes out from a big freeze, we’ll start the on board generators, day or night
  • If you’re planning a stay on your yacht, let us know, we’ll turn on the fridge, water heater and heater and whatever else floats your boat for a comfortable stay aboard

So how does it work? Simply contact us to book an appointment. A winterization service takes about a day to perform.

There are factors that affect the final cost of course, like if a 3-way valve needs installation, if we need to travel to you, any repairs required or if you’re doing a phone consultation.

Regardless, winterizing your yacht is one of the most important actions you can take to protect the condition of the vessel and ensure it has a swell life.

*If your yacht is docked at Squalicum Harbor, we’ll come to you since we’re neighbors.

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