Spring Sailboat Commissioning Check List...
Copied from Cruising World magazine: April 2000

Electrical Systems

      Monitor battery voltage with engine/charger off  (12.6 volts)

       Inspect battery electrode and top up as needed

       Clean & tighten battery terminals

       Exercise Breakers and main switches.

       Test lights, and clean contacts or replace bulbs as needed.










Engine at Rest

      Check oil level

      Check transmission-oil level.

      Check Coolant level.

      Adjust belt tension on all belt-driven equipment.

      Verify integrity of the wire on the shaft setscrew.

      Tighten all hose clamps.

      Inspect all hoses for chafe or bulging.

      Snug up all bolts on engine and accessories.

      Exercise and open fuel-tank petcocks.

      Inspect engine and exhaust anodes.

      Inspect shaft nodes.

      Clean and lubricate articulating props.

Engine Running

      Clean raw-water strainer.

      Exercise, lubricate, and open the inlet seacock.

      Monitor oil pressure.

      Exercise and lubricate throttle controls.

      Test transmission shifting.

      Look for oil leaks.

      Look for raw-water and coolant leaks.

      Look for fuel leaks around hoses and filters.

      Ensure that exhaust water flows.

      Verify temperature after running for 15 minutes.

      Check alternator output (13.5 volts).

      Monitor tachometer for regularity.

      Exercise the shaft-brake release.

      Monitor the packing-gland drip rate (3 to 5 drops per minute)


      Run heater; monitor performance

      Run air conditioner; monitor performance

      Run watermaker; replace filters as needed; check for leaks.

      Run refrigerator; clean radiators; monitor performance.

      Lubricate and adjust steering.

      Monitor solar- and wind-power generators.

 Sailing and Rigging

      Operate all sail furlers.

      Check integrity of mast boot.

      Inspect turnbuckles and toggles for hairline cracks and rust.

      Check all cotter pins and rings.

      Operate winches; grease as needed.

      Check all running rigging for chafe.

      Check all lines for proper whipping.

      Sails; Inspect seams, corners, battens, and pockets.

      Check all masthead hardware.


      Clean and grease porthole gaskets.

      Touch up paint bare wood.

      Ensure docking lines and fenders are onboard.

      List all onboard tools.

      List all spare bulbs, fuses, hoses, clamps and tapes.

      Ensure that documentation/registration, licenses and local charts are on board.


      Check onboard safety gear.

      Verify expiration dates of safety gear.

      Verify expiration dates of fire extinguishers.

      Verify expiration dates on first-aid kit.

      Inspect seizing wires of anchor shackles.

      Operate Windlass; monitor performance.

      Inspect lifelines for integrity.

      Pressure-test propane appliances

      Inspect cockpit drains for blockage


      Clean and grease VHF coax.

      Monitor VHF transmission power.

      Clean and grease depth-sounder and log/speedometer transducer O-rings

      Tighten all instrument connections.


      Test electric bilge pump.

      Clean bilge strainer as needed.

      Test float switch with water in the bilge.

      Empty the bilge with the manual bilge pump.

      Exercise and lubricate head pumps and Y-valves.

      Run and test freshwater pumps.

      Exercise and lubricate all seacocks.

      Flush antifreeze from freshwater hoses and pumps.

      Remove and clean all anti-siphon valves in engine head.