Fred's Shed DIY-types will love all they can learn at daily Fred's Shed seminars at the Progressive Insurance New York Boat Show. Credit: Progressive Insurance New York Boat Show

As a boat gets older, the cost of boat maintenance can really add up. Paying professionals to maintain your boat can cost around ten percent of a boat’s value every year.

Fortunately, with the right boat maintenance skills, anyone can do their own maintenance work and bring this annual cost down to as low as one percent of the value.

At Fred’s Shed, New York Boat Show attendees can take free, hands-on DIY workshops on a wide range of topics and learn what it takes to keep your boat in good shape. Keith Ammans of the National Marine Manufacturing Association has the low- down on what Fred’s Shed has to offer.

 

What sort of topics can visitors learn about at Fred’s Shed?
We’ve got sessions on troubleshooting, how to fix your motor, how to deal with mold and mildew, handling fiberglass damage, how to set a maintenance schedule, and one- on-one sessions for experienced maintainers who have specific questions. We also give tips on the best products to use - like what wax is best on your boat.

How difficult is it to learn these things?
Maintenance can be intimidating for first-time boat owners, but this stuff is a lot easier than people think. At Fred’s Shed, we walk everyone through the basics in layman’s terms. They can also ask questions.

What seminar is best for a first-timer who knows nothing about maintenance?
We have two starter courses, and they are our most popular: Maintaining the Gas outboard, and Maintaining the Stern Drive. We go though a list of maintenance basics, and how often each thing should be done. It’s also a great way for people who don’t plan on doing their own maintenance, so they can make sure their service center is doing everything it should at a reasonable cost.

What surprises people most about boat maintenance?
The majority of issues people see in the shop are related to fuel systems. A lot of them could have been avoided with basic knowledge of fuel system maintenance.

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