Summer’s nearly here, and you know what that means. Longer days, warmer weather, and time to make the most out of your boat. That’s right, it’s time to get your Mystic C4000 catamaran ready for another jam-packed season of fun on the water!
By spring, most boats have been in storage for three or more months. Extreme temperature changes and the salty air can cause hoses and other rubber components to rot. Fuel can break down, and moisture can cause corrosion on electrical systems and metal parts.
Boat maintenance is an essential part of owning a catamaran. It keeps you and your passenger comfortable and safe and helps prevent any problems affecting your good times. These quick and easy checks will help get your C4000 catamaran, or any other boat for that matter, in shape for the summer. Your cat will be seaworthy in no time at all, and you’ll be ready to make the most of those waves!
Why Summer Prep is a Must
Just like our cars and trucks, boats need regular maintenance to run smoothly, safely, and reliably. Proper boat care and upkeep extend the life of your catamaran and let you enjoy perfect days on the water whenever the mood strikes.
No matter what size boat you own, routine maintenance is needed to keep it ship-shape. In this post, we’ll cover some summer-ready basics like how to maintain your C4000, cleaning tips, and more so you have an epic summer on the water.
Cleaning Your Mystic C4000 Catamaran
If you typically boat in saltwater, you need to use freshwater to rinse your cat thoroughly after every outing. Saltwater is notorious for corroding metal components and, left unchecked, can decompose the boat’s Gelcoat. For more thorough cleaning, use a high-quality, preferably environmentally friendly, soap formulated for marine surfaces with a soft bristle brush on a long handle. Now’s the time to also inspect all exterior and interior surfaces for damage or excessive wear and tear.
Keeping your cat’s exterior clean not only showcases its beauty but it also:
- Helps prevent the spread of invasive species.
- Protects the boat’s structure by keeping the finish intact.
- Keeps your catamaran at peak performance. Dirty hulls can increase fuel costs by as much as 30 percent!
Barnacles and stuck-on sea detritus can create a serious drag on your cat’s hull. That makes the engine work harder, which decreases your fuel efficiency. Florida boaters usually need to clean their boat’s hull weekly. Colder water boaters can often go a month or two. When cleaning your catamaran, try to avoid toxic substances and, when possible, clean it on land to prevent polluting the water.
Material Specific Cleaning Tips
Not sure where to start in the cleaning process? Here are some tips for cleaning various boat materials.
- Fiberglass boats have a glossy gel coat finish to protect them from salt, sun, and other elements. When it starts to take on a chalky appearance, a thorough cleaning is in order. To keep your cat in prime condition, polish it with waxes designed to protect its gel coat. One application in the spring and another before you store your boat for the winter is ideal.
- Canvas seats, cushions, boat covers, and other items should always have their waterproofing properties intact. Use mild soap, a light brush, and freshwater. Avoid ammonia-based products if you can, as cleaning canvas items that also have PVC windows with them will over time damage the material. A specialty cleaner is a better investment.
- Upholstery. The Mystic C4000 comes with handcrafted seats designed for comfort and security. To prevent dirt, mold, and mildew buildup, regularly wipe down and clean them with mild, soapy water and a wet sponge. Wipe away soap residue with a clean, damp cloth and then dry the upholstery with a clean, soft cloth.
- Woodwork: Though wood isn’t as common in modern catamarans, sometimes people customize their boats with teak steps, handrails, or another boat part. Teak needs only a light scrub with a soft bristle brush and a mild cleaner.
Test All Operating Systems
It’s essential to periodically check your catamaran for damage and leaks.
- Inspect oil, power steering, and coolant levels, and change as necessary.
- Replace worn or damaged components like hoses and connections and make sure all fittings are secure.
- Clean all cable ends and electrical terminals.
- Check that the engine, ventilation, and exhaust systems are functioning properly.
- Test the battery, GPS, radio, compass, and depth finder.
- Confirm all navigational and instrument lights are working.
- Check propellers for dings, cracks, distortions, and pitting, as even a minor dent or imperfection can decrease your cat’s performance and put damage-inducing stress on other components.
Build a Tool Kit
The last thing you want to have happen while you’re enjoying your day in the sun is for a minor problem to signal the end of your outing. If you haven’t already, put together a tool kit with tools appropriate for your catamaran, such as extra batteries, light bulbs, filters, and plug. There should also be a well-stocked first-aid kit. Don’t forget to make and keep copies of your ship’s documentation, fishing, and other permits, radio license, insurance, and any other necessary papers on board—you never know when the Coast Guard might pay you an impromptu visit!
Personal Safety First
To protect against fire hazards, check to see that fire extinguishers are fully charged and stowed in their proper place. Life jackets should be inspected to ensure they’re in good condition. Boats over 16 feet in length must also have an additional throwable device. Navigation rules require a sound-producing device capable of a four-second blast that’s audible for a half-mile. Finally, it’s best to have an adequate supply of day and night visual distress signals (VDS) such as flares, mirrors, flashlights, and orange or red flags.
Other safety equipment to inspect, repair, or replace includes:
- One life jacket suitable for each onboard passenger. They should be the right size and in good condition and working order.
- The anchor and rope.
Don’t skimp on checking out the condition or working order of all onboard safety equipment! Plus, the U.S. Coast Guard has minimum standards for recreational vessels and their safety equipment. To meet these standards, required equipment must be “approved” or “certified” by the Coast Guard that it meets certain specifications, standards, and regulations for performance, construction, or materials. Your catamaran must also meet the requirements of the state in which you operate it. When in doubt, contact your local marine law enforcement agency.
Summer Start-up Checklist
To sum up these in-depth instruction extensive inspections, here’s a handy detailed checklist of what you must do to get your Mystic C4000 catamaran ready for summer.
- Inspect the fuel system for damages, leaks.
- Inspect fuel tank surface, connections, and hoses.
- Replace components as and when needed.
- Ensure all clamps, nuts, and bolts are securely in place.
- Verify the engine, ventilation, and exhaust systems are in working order.
- Clean carburetors thoroughly to ensure a healthy fuel economy and low emissions and prevent issues like hard-hot starting, rough idle, stumble under load, or flooding.
Cables and Belts
- Conduct a thorough inspection of belts and cables.
- Replace worn-out components.
- Check all fuel levels, including power steering, engine oil, coolant, and the power trim reservoir.
- Change oil filters, engine oil, and drive lubricants in a timely fashion, even if you checked them before putting your cat in winter storage.
It’s a digital world, and the boating industry is keeping pace. From engines to navigational systems, be sure your cat’s electrical elements are running smoothly. This ensures a safe and comfortable trip with no sudden surprises while out on the water.
Here’s what to check:
- Battery water level and whether the battery needs charging.
- Inspect batteries for corrosion, and clean and lubricate when needed.
- All wiring for spare fuses for wear and tear.
- The operability of all gauges.
- The shore power and charger.
- All lighting fixtures, including navigation lights.
- Your supply of spare bulbs.
- Terminals. You should remove any that are corroded. Dirty terminals and cable ends should be cleaned with a wire brush.
- Any other electrical connections for corrosion. It can be extremely detrimental to your catamaran’s performance.
Don’t forget to charge your battery at the beginning of the season and have it tested to make sure it’s holding a charge at full capacity. Finally, electrical systems should always be inspected by a qualified electrical technician, preferably someone with marine experience.
Hulls and Props
- Conduct a thorough inspection of propellers for cracks, pitting, distortion, and dings.
- Replace propeller bearings if needed.
- Ensure propellers are securely in place.
- A damaged prop can result in unwanted vibrations and damage your drive train in the worst-case scenario.
- When you inspect your hull, check for cracks, distortions, and blisters, you must clean the hull, topsides, and deck with an environmentally friendly cleaning solution.
- Check that life jackets and other lifesaving gear are in good condition.
- Have enough lifesaving gear on board for every passenger.
- Ensure each life jacket is the correct size for any passenger’s individual body weight.
- Consider investing in an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) to handle distressful situations. It can make it much easier for the authorities to find you.
It’s also a smart idea to take advantage of any and all free courtesy inspections offered by agencies such as the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, U.S. Coast Guard, and U.S. Power Squadrons. The Coast Guard Auxillary also offers boating safety education, and the Power Squadrons offers a full range of boating courses and seminars.
Celebrating Summer in Your Mystic C4000 Catamaran
We call the C4000 catamaran the “gentleman’s catamaran” for good reason. It offers incredible speed and performance while still being fun and easy to handle. You don’t need racing experience to handle Mystic’s C4000. It’s an easy-to-drive cat that’s perfect for days and days of fun in the sun, whether you’re cruising your favorite local lake or whizzing around in the Bahamas.
When stacked up against similar outboard catamarans, the Mystic C4000 delivers a more comfortable rough-water ride. It features:
- An all-carbon-fiber hull that perfectly balances shape, weight, length, and capability.
- An open cockpit.
- Comfortable, functional luxury with interiors that are as stylish as they are practical.
- Ample cushioning.
- 450R outboard power.
- 200-gallon fuel capacity.
Boat lovers rightfully equate summertime with unlimited opportunities to relax and get away with friends and families. In their excitement to get out on the water, they’re also often tempted to launch without first taking care of boat maintenance and safety. Before commissioning your catamaran this summer, be sure it’s properly maintained and compliant with local, state, and federal boating safety laws.
To learn more about how to prepare your cat for summer, or to get information on Mystic’s fourth-generation catamaran, Contact us online today to schedule a personal consultation.