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How to Protect Your Stored Boats and Automobiles Over Winter

Personal Lines

It’s that time of year again, when temperatures start to fall, leaves start to change color, and many of our clients start preparing their boats and automobiles for winter storage. Thought it may seem like a routine task, there are some precautions you can take to ensure that your vehicles are protected throughout the season.

One common issue that we see with stored boats and automobiles is rodent damage. Without precautionary measures, rodents may chew through wires or boat seats over the winter, and, come summertime, you could be forced to file a claim and send your vehicle to the shop right when the fun is about to start.

We recommend reaching out to your insurance agent when you’re getting ready to store your boat or automobile (especially if it’s the first time you’re doing so). Your agent will be able to check your current coverage to make sure it’s up to date, and provide you with best practices for storing your assets safely. Here are some of the quick tips we commonly share:

When preparing your automobile for storage:

  • Store your vehicle in a place where animals cannot get to it like a shed or sealed garage.
  • Put a tag on your vehicle’s steering wheel as a reminder to call your agent before your vehicle is driven again when the weather warms up. Coverages will change once the vehicle is active, and you’ll want to update your coverages to be current.
  • Cover your vehicle.
  • Check on your vehicle from time to time to ensure you catch any damage soon after it happens.

When preparing your boat for storage:

  • Winterize your boat by removing the battery, draining water, and filling it with gas.
  • Repair any damage from the boating season before storing your boat.
  • Remove electronics and gear.
  • Store your boat in a place where animals cannot get to it like a shed or sealed garage. Boats should be lifted, on a trailer preferably.
  • Cover your boat.
  • Check on your boat from time to time to ensure you catch any damage soon after it happens.

Storing your boat or automobile may be part of your winter routine, but we’d like to add one more step to ensure you’re covered if any damage were to occur. Reach out to your M3 Private Client Group Account Executive to inquire about coverages for your stored automobiles or boats.


Samantha Wood is a private client account manager at M3.

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