Finding the perfect outboard motor gives you a sense of relief, figuring you no longer have to scour the reviews and recommendations. However, knowing what you can and cannot do with said motor opens up another can of worms. No matter what state you live in, there are specific rules and regulations to follow. Generally, these are the questions to ask before motorizing your watercraft, but each state’s answer may differ from California’s laws if you view this post elsewhere.
What Do I Need To Register?
The size of your vessel determines if you need to register it. In California, any vessel less than eight feet long doesn’t require registration if you can manually propel it. However, if you attach a motor to your watercraft, you must register it with the state.
Do I Need Insurance?
Most states, including California, don’t require you to carry boater’s insurance, although it does have its benefits. It may be challenging to find storage for your vessel if it isn’t insured. Plus, having that peace of mind may be worth the investment.
Are There Minimum Age Requirements?
Adults must be present for those from 12 to 15 years old or if the watercraft reaches more than 15 horsepower. An operator can use a watercraft at 16 years old solo if the boat is under 15 horsepower. Knowing these rules helps you avoid inconvenient situations if you have a family full of ambitious children.
Am I Able To Motorize This Specific Watercraft?
Before shopping for a motor to add to your watercraft, you should see if it’s even possible logistically, let alone legally. It might surprise you to see what you can put a motor on nowadays. For example, you can get paddleboard propulsion to boost your kayak, canoe, or dinghy.
How Do I Keep the Motor Strong?
The best strategy for keeping your motor running strong is to efficiently manage its fuel supply. When gasoline is stagnant, it evaporates, making the remaining fuel sticky and heavy. To combat this issue, you should add traces of fuel more frequently. Filling the tank and not firing up the motor is bad news.
What’s the Best Strategy for Maintaining It?
Preventative maintenance helps keep any motor in superb condition all season long. Following a strict maintenance program will get your engine to last for years and possibly decades. Don’t wait until the last second to replace faulty parts.
Those are a handful of questions to ask before motorizing your watercraft. Depending on your needs and concerns, you may have several others you need answers for before motorizing a watercraft. Nevertheless, getting a basic understanding of the law in your state and some tips on maintaining the quality of your investment puts you on the right track. Bixby is a premier supplier for all your nautical needs. Please browse our store to get any goods to improve your experience on the water today!