Holiday Weekend Getaway
May 9, 2016 3:20 PM | Tagged as Central Illinois, Lake Springfield, Lake Springfield Marina, Memorial Day Weekend, Trailering

Memorial Day Weekend is right around the corner! To me, Memorial Day is always the official beginning of summer. I always try to spend Memorial Day in the sun somehow, but my favorite way is definitely on a boat. There are many different lakes around Central Illinois. Why not trailer your boat someplace new for the weekend? Of course, we would love for you to try our lake, we will even rent you a slip for the weekend so you can make the most of your time on the water. Do some research ahead of time, check out the local marinas/restaurants on the water. If you will have to stay overnight, look into hotels close to the lake.

If you are going to trailer your boat, there are a lot of things to keep in mind. Many of you may only trailer your boat at the beginning and end of each season. Here is a checklist of items to double check before trailering your boat:

• Ensure tires are properly inflated (also check for cracking or dry rot)
• Check brake lights and turn signals to make sure they are functioning properly
• Make sure to use a safety chain to connect the trailer to the towing vehicle
• Secure everything in the boat so nothing flies out while you are on the road
• Check winch cables and clips to make sure they are rust free
• Make sure the boat is secured to the trailer and make sure tie-downs are snug
• If you have an outboard, tilt it up to protect the engine from impact damage. A transom saver will provide added support to help protect the engine/transom
• Double check to make sure you have all safety equipment/necessary documentation before leaving home

Keep all of these items in mind when you are packing up for a weekend trip to another body of water. If you don’t have a boat, renting is always an option. We still have several boats available for Memorial Day Weekend. Spending time on the water with friends and family is sure to create great memories for all. We can’t wait to see you soon! Have a safe and fun Memorial Day weekend everyone!

Spring Maintenance
March 17, 2016 1:11 PM | Tagged as Central Illinois, Safety, Spring Maintenance

The weather has been pretty nice around central Illinois lately. If you are like us, this weather makes us excited about summer and of course boating! Some of you may think you can just pull your boat out of storage and away you go on that first 70 degree and sunny Saturday. Let me just tell you, that’s a bad idea. Your boat has been sitting in storage somewhere for about 6 months. Wouldn’t it be a good idea to give your boat a once over before you get it out on the water? Think of spring maintenance as a check-up for your boat. This check-up could help prevent problems that could keep you off the water once the season is in full swing.

What all does spring maintenance entail, you may ask. Our certified technicians will:
• Remove shrink wrap
• Check, charge, and clean battery posts
• Check trim for proper operation
• Check operation of all gauges
• Inspect boots, bellows, belts, and hoses for dry-rot, wear, and leaks
• Check for proper shifting, inspect cables (throttle, steering, and choke), and connections
• Inspect lower unit for visible damage
• Lubricate grease zirks if applicable
• Inspect propeller and skeg for tightness, damage, and knicks
• Check all fluids for proper levels and fill as needed (up to half a quart)
• Check all filters for condition, leakage, and tightness
• Start engine in shop, inspect for proper operation and cooling
• Check trailer lights, coupler, tires/pressure, rims, bunks, brake fluid, and grease bearings
• Check impeller and wear-ring (PWC)

As you can see this is a very comprehensive list and probably has many things you did not think about. Our certified technicians are very thorough. If something is going on with your boat, they are sure to find the problem and we can get it taken care of before the season.

Spring maintenance takes care of boat functions but it is your job to make sure your safety equipment is in good condition and operating properly. Be sure to check:
• Life jackets to ensure they are in good condition
• There are enough life jackets for maximum passengers
• All fire extinguishers are the right class for your boat
• Fire extinguishers are fully charged and stowed in the proper place
• The first aid kit is fully stocked

Between spring maintenance and your personal safety check you are sure to have a great start to the season. Make sure to schedule your spring maintenance today and make boating as carefree as possible!

Preparing for the Boat Show
January 29, 2016 11:52 AM | Tagged as Boat Show Tips, Central Illinois, Springfield Boat Show

In central Illinois January, February, and March are the hardest months to get through. The holidays are over and the cold weather has set in. Most people rarely leave their homes refusing to face the bitter cold. I have a solution to get you out of your house and dreaming of the warmer days ahead. Head to the Springfield Boat Show at the Illinois State Fairgrounds February 26th, 27th, and 28th and browse the latest and greatest boats local dealers have to offer.

As we, at the Lake Springfield Marina, prepare for the boat show on our end, I thought I might offer you, the consumer, some tips to prepare as well!

Boat shows can be overwhelming! Every dealer has “exactly what you need.” So before the show, do your research so you know exactly what you and your family needs actually are. The following questions may help you narrow your search:

- What types of boating activities are you interested in?
- How many passengers do you expect to have?
- What type of propulsion do you prefer?
- What boat length best accommodates your needs?
- What is your price range?
- Where will you be storing your boat? Will you be trailering it or keeping it in a slip?

After answering all of these questions, you will have a good idea of what type of boat you are interested in. At the show you can feel relaxed knowing what you’re looking for. Then, you can ask the dealers to get a closer look at the boats that interest you and they can answer any remaining questions you have.

Once at the show, many “sales people” will approach you. Many dealers bring ‘fillers’ to take up space. Don’t be afraid to ask them if they are an expert on the brand you are interested in. Another point of interest would be if they have been to the company’s training or if they have been certified. A boat is a major purchase. You should have confidence that your salesperson is able to give you credible information about the boat and brand you are looking at. A certified, trained, specialist will be able to easily guide you through the boat buying process and ease any concerns you may have.

So what’s the deal with these “only at show” deals? Most customers don’t realize that manufacturers give incentives to create a sense of urgency. These incentives are only offered to the dealer for the boat show. If you are unsure if you are ready to buy at the boat show, talk to your salesperson. They will be able to tell you which incentives are manufacture based vs. which incentives are dealer based. If you decide to buy the following week, you will know what offers will still be available to you.

I hope these tips will help you be relaxed and enjoy your experience at the boat show. We look forward to seeing you February 26th, 27th, and 28th at the Illinois State Fairgrounds for the 23rd Annual Springfield Boat Show!

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Recent posts
Posted: May 9, 2016 3:20 PM Holiday Weekend Getaway
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Posted: March 17, 2016 1:11 PM Spring Maintenance
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Posted: January 29, 2016 11:52 AM Preparing for the Boat Show
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