What Supplies Do I Need for My New Boat?

Buying a new boat could be seen as a daunting task. Most first-time buyers are not fully aware of how to maintain a boat in proper conditions. And most new boat owners may not also be aware of the accessories to keep in it to ensure smooth and safe sailing.

What supplies do I need for my new boat? To answer this question, let us have a look at some of the 17 essential supplies that one must keep on their new boat.

  1. Flotation devices
  2. Sound devices
  3. Flare guns
  4. Marine VHF radio
  5. A GPS device/compass
  6. Additional safety gear
  7. A sturdy bucket
  8. Legal documentation for the boat
  9. Throwable PFDs (personal throwing devices)
  10. Backfire flame arrestors
  11. A basic first aid kit
  12. Hand-held fire extinguishers
  13. Weather protection clothes
  14. Extra food and water
  15. An anchor and rode (line)
  16. Basic tools for repair of the boat
  17. Extra fuel

Today, we will look at a few supplies that should be on your newly purchased boat. This list will help you curate the necessary and correct supplies to safely get ready for your maiden voyage with some peace of mind.

What Supplies Do I Need for My New Boat? Our 17 Top Supplies

1. Flotation devices

One of the most important supplies to have on your new boat is a flotation device. Having items that fall into this category can be of utmost significance when it comes to saving one’s life. Several items can be considered flotation devices. These are life jackets, throw cushions, and flotation gear.

2. Sound devices

You must have a sound device on your new boat. It is advisable, and in some countries mandatory, to keep sound devices, such as a bell, horn, or a whistle on board, in case of emergencies. It is of great help when you need to send out a sound signal should there be an unfortunate incident.

3. Flare guns

In case of emergency, it is good to have a flare gun or handheld flares in order to send out a visual signal to call for help. Flare guns shoot out bright flares that stay visible for a long time after being launched. This will help search parties or the rescue teams of the coast guard to find you.

4. Marine VHF radio

You must keep a handheld VHF radio on your new boat. This will help you send out a distress signal in case of an unforeseen event.

A VHF radio acts as a combined transmitter and receiver that can be used to send out various signals. It operates on international frequencies known as channels.

The international distress channel is channel 16 (156.8 MHz). Spare batteries are also a must for any battery-operated electronics.

5. A GPS device/compass

Keeping a GPS device or even a basic compass will help you navigate in the right direction. It is a crucial part of the boat to avoid getting lost out on the water.

6. A sturdy bucket

One small detail that is most often overlooked is the need to keep a sturdy bucket on a boat. Though a small requirement, it is a very useful supply to have in hand in times of trouble. It can be used as a bailer to get water out of the boat, should there be leakage of some kind.

7. A basic first aid kit

Possibly the most important answer I give to anyone who asks me ‘what supplies do I need for my new boat’ is to always keep a basic first aid kit on board.

The first aid kit should contain some basic antiseptic solution or cream, gauze, bandages, sterile gloves, cream or spray (for insect bites), painkillers, cleansing wipes, scissors, thermometer, and distilled water for cleaning any wounds.

A basic first aid kit will be of great help for basic treatments in case of injuries and can be of significant importance in saving one’s life.

8. Additional safety gear

Bilge pumps and fire extinguishers are an integral part of the boat safety kit. These will help you in being ready in case of emergencies like leakages and fire outbreaks.

A bilge pump is a device that helps get rid of excess water build-up in the boat bilge. This can be a manual or automatic pump.

9. Weather protection clothes

One might not really consider temperature as a big factor when sailing. Still, even if it’s only a distance of a few miles or kilometers, there can be a significant change in the temperature. So be sure to consider both extremes of the temperature spectrum and pack clothes accordingly.

Keep one thing in mind – no matter what clothes you pack, they should not hinder your ability to move.

10. Legal documentation for the boat

If you are in an area that falls close to an international border, make sure to carry proper legal documentation for the boat and your identity proof.

This will help authorities recognize you and guide you to the correct help. This will also save you from a case of mistaken identity and save you from a lot of unnecessary legal troubles.

11. Throwable PFD (personal flotation devices)

Along with life jackets, you should also keep some PFDs on board so that they can provide added help when needed. PFDs include life vests, flotation devices, etc.

Remember to select the right PFD while keeping in mind the specific conditions of the place you are sailing at.

12. Backfire flame arrestors

In case of engine backfire, you can use a backfire flame arrestor to control the ignition of gasoline vapors. This will help in preventing a fire breakout and will ensure the safety of the people on board.

13. Hand-held fire extinguishers

While enjoying the beauty and thrill of your new boat, it is also important for you to be prepared for any kind of unforeseen situations that might arise.

You should have a hand-held fire extinguisher onboard. In case of a fire, it can be used before the fire gets out of hand.

14. Extra food and water

You should pack extra food and drinking water in your storage, apart from your regular ration. Pack dehydrated food items that have a longer shelf life than regular food. This can be used if you run out of normal food in case of an emergency.

Also, keep vitamin water and pack electrolytes, which can help you maintain your nutrient levels.

15. An anchor and rode (line)

Another important supply that you should have on your boat is an anchor and a rode. An anchor rode is essentially what connects the anchor to your boat. Without an anchor rode, it will be difficult to stay at one place, and your boat might end up drifting away out of safety.

16. Basic tools for repair of the boat

Keep some basic tools for the repair of the boat. Before you purchase a new boat, brush up on some pointers on how to carry out some basic repairs. It will help you if something goes wrong with the engine or any other part of the boat, saving you from any mechanical failure. This will also keep you from being stranded in the boat with no help.

17. Extra fuel

Keep an extra barrel or two of fuel onboard, just in case you get lost or end up taking the wrong direction, and your fuel runs out. This will keep you from being stranded out in the water and help you sail closer to the coast, where you might find helpful.

Conclusion – What Supplies Do I Need for My New Boat?

We have just gone through the essential supplies that you need to keep in your new boat. Having them on board is not only essential but also mandatory in some countries. Make a point to check with the coast guard authorities of your country or area to get a proper list of mandatory items according to them.

What supplies do I need for my new boat? Let us summarize the list of supplies that should be a part of your new boat. These boat supplies will make your boating adventures more safe and enjoyable:

  1. Flotation devices
  2. Sound devices
  3. Flare guns
  4. Marine VHF radio
  5. A GPS device/compass
  6. Additional safety gear
  7. A sturdy bucket
  8. Legal documentation for the boat
  9. Throwable PFDs (personal throwing devices)
  10. Backfire flame arrestors
  11. A basic first aid kit
  12. Hand-held fire extinguishers
  13. Weather protection clothes
  14. Extra food and water
  15. An anchor and rode (line)
  16. Basic tools for repair of the boat
  17. Extra fuel

One thing to keep in mind is that the exact specifications of some of these supplies or items may vary depending on the boat’s size. So it is a good idea to check with the local authorities before getting the supplies.

No matter what size boat you have, small or big, having these items or supplies will ensure that you and your boat are safe. Having these supplies on board will also give you some confidence and peace of mind when you are out sailing on the water.

I hope you will find it easier to source each of the supplies in accordance with your local authorities and make your boat a safer vessel.