Well its January 4th , 2006 and spring will be coming upon us here soon, so I thought while you guys have nothing better to do you can get your boats put them in your garage or your buddy's garage and start to go over them before spring. Is your catfishing Boat ready to go #1. Clean your boat real good go over all the seats and get all the grime off of it from last summer until now. #2. Next you want to inspect your boat on the outside and inside for any damage. go over the entire boat on the outside making sure there is no cracks in the fiberglass or holes into the aluminum or cracks in the joints. #3. Check your Fire Extinguisher, make sure it is charged, if it is one that does not show the charge, and it has a green stick , protruding out of the end of it, shake the fire extinguisher and turn it upside down and push the green stick in and if it comes right back out to place it is fine if not and it stays in or goes real slow replace the extinguisher. #4. Check Flares and expiration dates. If expired replace them with new. #5. Check your Batteries in your boat, Put distilled water in them if there low on water. make sure there is no corrosion built up on the terminals if that has taken place remove the terminals and use a old toothbrush with Baking soda and water to clean them. #6. go over your entire wiring connections, follow your wiring and make sure it looks good and replace any that does not look good or any connection that are not looking good. ( This is one area I see every summer, when people are out in there boats and the lights don't work ) #7. Check over the motor very good for any filed mice who might of played during the winter so far looking for a nice den, the worse thing you can do is find wires chewed off when launching your boat or a nice nest in the Carburetor. #8.Check you bildge pump or live well pumps, pump water thru them to make sure there working don't bet there working check them first. #9. Test your Navigation and anchor lights. go over each item close make sure there is no crude built up on the lights connectors. #10.If you have a trolling motor please remove the prop and check to make sure there is no fishing line build up on the shaft. #11. Check Fuel lines for cracks or lose connections, and the primer bulb should hold firm, when you pump it up all the way. Top off your fuel in your boat if it is going to sit for more then 60 days and not run then you should get Fuel Stabilize and put it in the tank. ( this is important ) Is your Motor ready to go too #1. Clean and replace all fuel filters, don't look at them and say hey there fine, if they are replaceable then change it. its not going to drain your wallet if you can afford the gas you can afford to change the fuel filter. #2. Go Over your prop, look for significantly damage, if it does get it repaired prior to going out this year. #3. Pull the prop off the shaft. check for fishing line and other stuff wrapped around it. Please remove anything that is wrapped around it. When putting the prop back on the shaft make sure you grease the shaft with waterproof marine grease with Teflon. #4. Change the lower gear unit oil there is no excuse for this not being changed every year. you can use your outboard manual as a reference for this job, Be sure to check for signs of water in the oil when draining it. #5. Change spark plugs this should be done every year , for a $1.75 its worth it to be done every year, and if you are somehow using alot of oil either to break in a motor thats been rebuilt then it should be done after the oil has been used for the 10-to- 20 hours and then again a few months later. #6.Lubricate all the pivot points , grease the swivel brackets, tilt steering tube, steering cable. Old grease with dirt should be removed and then coat the bar with marine grease. make sure the steering wheel operates freely. Is your Trailer ready to go fishing or transport your boat ? #1. If you don't have bearing buddy's its time to spend your money on something worth while. #2. I have my trailer seals and bearings replaced every year no matter what, this is what is going to get your boat to the water, I don't care how good your boat is if this trailer is not ready you wont get it there. #3. Check your tread wear on your tires , inspect your spare. #4. Check your electric hydraulic brakes, if you have it equipped with it. Grease and check your trailer Jack #5. Go over all your wiring and make sure all lights work if cracked lens replace them and replace lights if need to be. Use electrical grease to the bulb sockets this will extend the life to the bulb due to being submerged into water. Well this is a fine line to follow, if you do this every year you should not be stuck sitting in the water or pulled off the road waiting on someone else to help you. Have a good season fishing.