Compass Headings
Dedicated to raisng the bar


The Checklist:

Weather Planning
& Resources

Spare Parts &
Boat Outfit

& Equipment

Celestial Navigation
Vessel Conduct
Rules of the Road

Safety Equipment &
Vessel Paperwork

Trip Planning
Maneuvering, Anchoring
& Enroute Checks

Bar Entrances, Passes
& Narrows

Distances Reference
Mariner Math
Port Information
Panama Canal

Vessel Delivery
Selecting a Vessel
Selling Your Boat
Service Providers

Purchase Checklist


The best maintenance is to use your boat and its systems. Keep your bilges clean and dry. Most electrical problems are loose or corroded connections.

Don’t let these fall through the cracks:
Main Engine and Genset Raw Water Impellors
Oil and filter changes
Engine and Hull Zincs
Belts and Hoses
Thru-Hull Valves
Manufacturers recommended maintenance

12 to 18 Months:
Wax exterior / Refinish bright work
Haul, repaint bottom, replace zincs
Main Engine/Genset checkup by qualified mechanic
Check Genset valve adjustment
All engine zincs

Every 12 months or every 200 hours:
Main engines and Gensets
Oil, oil filter, fuel filter, racors
Water maker high pressure pump oil level
Check or replace prefilter

Before each season/Before each major trip:
Transmission oil levels
Coolant levels. Reservoirs
Hydraulic fluid levels
Steering fluid levels
Hydraulic control levels/pressure
Sea strainers
Engine/Genset Impellers
Air filters
Water filters (replace)
Reverse cycle AC/Heat
Clean screens
Clean condensation pans
Clean bottom and check zincs

Battery water/ Connections
Start and run Main Engines
Run Thrusters
Run Stabilizers
Run Tender Davit
Run Anchor Windlass
Exercise steering
Start and run Gensets
Place under load
Turn on and operate all electrical
Equipment, Appliances and Electronics
Turn on and check Navigation lights
Run water system
Keep water in tank fresh
Replace filter annually
Run bilge pumps and float switches
Keep bilges clean and dry
Exercise all thru hull valves
Flush all heads
Keep holding tank pumped out
Run Watermaker (every 2 weeks)
Pickle if not being used
Main engine shaft packings
Rudder shaft packings

Add Biocide each time

Service and run outboard prior to season
Clean and ensure Tender is properly equipped
Flush outboard after salt water use
Battery switch to “off” after each use

Ask the Captain
The Checklist
Purchase Checklist

Purchase books, cards CDs and Calendars
Books, cards and prints
offered by author
Chris Couch
Compass Headings Publishing.