Archive for the ‘News’ Category

4 Reasons You Should Buy a Boat

Friday, July 13th, 2018

The boating lifestyle is something for the entire family. The great thing about the love of boating is that it can be passed down from generation to generation. More often than not, boaters become boaters because their parents or grandparents were boaters themselves. This tradition continues when they introduce the boating lifestyle to their children.

Whether you have been contemplating buying a boat for some time, recently went out on a friend’s boat and enjoyed it, or attended a local boat show and fell in love with the watercraft, here are four reasons why you should buy a boat and start living on and around the water. 

1. Attend Boating and Fishing Events

National Fishing and Boating Week occurs during the first week of June every year. With your own boat, you can be prepared for this extravaganza next year. During this celebration, you can attend many events, including boat parades and fishing derbies.

Most states will offer free fishing days or weekends. For most of these, you don’t even have to have a fishing license to go fishing, which is great for newbies. Generally, these free fishing days are during the National Fishing and Boating week, but some states hold their free fishing days at other times throughout the year.

For example, Rhode Island offers free freshwater fishing days the first weekend of May, and Connecticut offers a few days spread through the summer.

2. Get Easy Access to Water

Without a boat, you would need to have a waterfront property to have access to water. This can be extremely expensive, as waterfront properties are costlier than non-waterfront homes.

Luckily, buying a boat gives you the advantage of having easy access to various bodies of water, and since 90 percent of Americans live within 60 minutes of a navigable body of water, families have the perfect opportunity to make numerous boating memories.

3. Relieve Stress After a Hard Day or Week

Anytime that you are feeling stressed someone will tell you that you need to get out of the house. Being cooped up inside the house, especially in the dark and without the sun, is depressing. If you have gone outside when you were feeling stressed, you know how beneficial the outdoors can be. So, why not add some fun into the mix?

In fact, one particular survey from 2005 showed that boating was one of the top three stress-relieving activities, with the other two being exercise and weekend road trips. This same survey found that American households enjoyed partaking in a number of boating-related activities, including relaxing with friends and family, fishing, cruising, and waterskiing.

4. Get a Great Deal

If you’ve always wanted a boat but weren’t sure about the cost, now’s the perfect time to buy here in Connecticut. The Connecticut state legislature cut the sales tax on boats, boat trailers, and boat motors by half, effective July 1, 2018.

The sales tax on these items used to be 6.35%, but now those who buy boats will only pay 2.99%. Take a look at the boat you’re interested in, and see if it can now fit into your budget since you won’t have to pay nearly as much sales tax on it. Speak with a local boat specialist for more information on pricing.

If you are interested in learning more about the benefits of the boating lifestyle, would like to discuss financing options, or aren’t sure the style of boat that would be best suited to you and your family’s individual situation, contact our team at Petzold’s Marine Center for assistance. We’re ready to help you.

Everything You Need to Know About Bowriders

Wednesday, June 20th, 2018

If you’re in the market for a boat, you have a lot of choices. Boats not only come in different styles and sizes – you can also choose from different types of boats that are geared for certain water activities. A bowrider is a good choice for recreational boating because it offers a vehicle for several water activities, including water skiing, lounging, and fishing.

Anatomy of a Bowrider

A bowrider starts with the same basics as any boat:

  • Cockpit: Location of the controls
  • Hull: Body of the boat
  • Gunwale: Upper edge of the boat’s side
  • Propeller: Method for propulsion the boat

However, one of the distinctive features of a bowrider is the V-shaped seating in the bow, or front, of the boat, which where it gets its name. This seating replaces an internal cabin. All models also come with front and rear lights, as well as seating. Some of the larger models include swiveling board racks, tow mirrors, a sundeck, and rear seating.

Bowrider vs Deck Boat

A bowrider and deck boat are very similar. The main difference is the shape – a deck boat tends to feature a flatter hull that’s wider in the front and increased lounge seating in the front deck. Both styles come with towing capacity for water sports, as well as the ability to add a tower for towing. Deck boats generally have more seating and storage than a same-sized bowrider.

The different hull and bow shapes result in different handling. Deck boats lift less in the front when accelerating than bowriders. The V-shaped hull of the bowrider results in sharper turns and an increased ability to cut through waves. The wide hull of deck boats tends to make them feel more stable.

Key Considerations for Choosing a Bowrider

Even if you’ve settled on a bowrider over a deck boat, you still have a few considerations to keep in mind. Brainstorm usage, which will help you pick a model. For example, think about how many water sports you’ll realistically be enjoying. If it’s a lot, one of the wakeboard towers makes sense. However, if you’re more of a sunbather, you may prefer a model with a dedicated sundeck.

In that vein, think about capacity considerations. Do you have visions of hosting parties on your boat, or will groups be kept small? Likewise, think about how much gear you’ll want to bring onboard. Ensure the model you’re considering has sufficient stowage.

In that vein, bowriders come with different party accessories. A stereo, lighting, and drinks holders may not seem significant, but they can affect your enjoyment of the boat. You may also consider a cockpit table, swim ladder, and other accessories to increase the fun.

Type of Motor

With bowriders, you can choose from three different types of motors. The classic is the outboard motor, which consists of the engine, gearbox, and propellers. The outboard motor is attached to the outside of the transom. It’s typically on a system that allows you to raise or lower the motor and to pivot it in or out of the water.

A sterndrive motor is a hybrid of inboard and outboard motors. The engine is located inboard. It delivers power to the drive unit, which is installed to the stern below the waterline. The drive unit rotates the propellers. Sterndrive motors are common with bowriders.

A third option is a jet-propelled motor. Jet drives can be either outboard or inboard. The propulsion comes via a water pump. The pump sucks up water and jets it out the back, which provides the propulsion.

A bowrider is a good choice if you want a day boat to host small parties or casual family outings. Visit Petzold’s Marine Center for a wide variety of bowriders and accessories.

Storing a Boat for Winter? Don’t Forget These Steps

Tuesday, June 12th, 2018

Saying goodbye to open waters is difficult to do. However, with winter weather here, it’s important to put your boat in storage until the next boating season. Storage protects your boat from harsh elements, such as ice and snow. Maintain your boat’s good condition so that you can enjoy the waves another day. Remember these key steps to prepare your boat for storage.

Make Sure the Boat Is Clean

Take the time to thoroughly clean the boat. Wipe down windows, windshields, and trim. Check the exterior for any needed touch-ups. Wash the deck and other high foot traffic areas. Finish with a layer of wax to prevent rust. Make sure everything is dry and take out all damp accessories, like wet towels, to prevent mold growth.

While no one particularly enjoys deep cleaning, this step will make the next launch a quicker process. Take time to clean and check the boat before storage, instead of doing so at the beginning of the next boating season. This way, when the weather warms, you’ll enjoy the maximum amount of time on the water.

Make Sure the Boat Is Dry

Water left sitting on a boat causes two harmful things: mold and rust. Mold does more than indicate a dirty boat – it is an eyesore and it creates potential breathing problems for the crew and guests on board. Rust leads to corrosion, which leads to repairs that could have been avoided. Especially for steel boats, rust can cause damage and cut down the life expectancy of the boat.

To keep out mold and rust, drain any standing water from the boat before it is stored. Moisture is problematic as well. Give nooks and crannies a wipe down. These are the places susceptible to moisture build up and mold growth. Additionally, block the ports and cover the top to keep out potential wetness (as well as critters also looking for a dry place during winter).

Make Sure the Boat Is Fueled

The boat’s engine sits unused for a considerable amount of time during storage, and you need to prepare it so that no damage is done. An empty gas tank is another place where mold can grow. Fill up the boat’s gas tank before dropping it off at storage. This keeps out mold, corrosion, or any moisture that might freeze in the cold temperatures.

Gas left alone in a tank creates other problems, like gum buildup that evaporates and clogs the engine. Adding fuel stabilizer to gas helps preserve the engine and keeps the fuel from evaporating. Safeguard your engine from potential damage caused by gum buildup by using fuel stabilizer.

Make Sure the Boat Is Oiled

Before storing in your boat for winter, change the oil and oil filter. Wash and dry out the oil tank to get any moisture, water, or grim that may have seeped in during use. Water in an oil tank can lead to corrosion and damage. Ideally, you should change the oil when the engine is slightly warmed to rid any particles in the tank. Pour in new oil to keep moisture away.

Make Sure the Boat Is Off

It is frustrating to take a boat out of storage only to find that the battery dead. Charge up the battery and then disconnect it, so it does not drain. If necessary, clean the battery contacts with a scrub of water and baking soda because clean battery contacts can make the connection better. If your boat is stored in an extremely cold place, remove the battery and store it inside for further protection.

Make Sure the Boat Is Safe

Find a safe storage place for your boat. Boats are precious items that need security. Look for a storage facility that has indoor and outdoor storage options, as well as security in place. If you’re using outdoor storage, then make sure there are fences and security cameras to avert theft or vandalism.

If you’re looking for a place to store your boat or have questions about the storing process, then contact us at Petzold’s Marine Center.

2 Reasons to Use Indoor Storage for Your Boat

Thursday, May 3rd, 2018

As a boat owner, one of the things that you could be unsure about is where to store your boat. When you talk to different boating enthusiasts, you’ll probably get different suggestions. Of course, you have various options but usually, opting for an indoor boat storage option is your best choice. These are a few of the main reasons.

1. Keep Your Boat Protected from the Elements

Some people leave their boats in the water all year long. However, year-round storage in the water can cause excessive wear and tear on your boat. Wind, salt from the seawater, and sunlight can cause fading and other types of damage. You also have to worry about problems like barnacles growing on the parts of your boat that are submerged, which can cause damage and be a pain to remove.

Even when you store your boat on land when it’s not in use, you still have to worry about the boat being damaged by the elements. For example, if you store your boat at home, then chances are good that you might not have a large enough garage or storage building to house it. If the boat is kept outdoors, it will still be exposed to the elements, and added wear and tear can occur over time.

With indoor storage, however, you’ll know that your boat is protected from wind damage, water damage, and sun damage. This can help you keep your boat looking good and in its best condition for a long time to come.

2. Avoid the Hassles of Having Your Boat at Home

Even if you aren’t concerned about theft or vandalism, you might not want to keep your boat at home. Even though you might love your boat, having it at home can be a hassle.

For example, if you have limited yard space, you might find that your boat will take up more space than you would prefer. In addition, you or your neighbors might see the boat as a bit of an eyesore. In some places, you even have to worry about HOA rules preventing you from storing your boat at home. When you store your boat elsewhere, you don’t have to worry about these problems.

If you’re a boat owner, keeping your boat in storage can be the best option. Keep your boat in its best condition so you can enjoy using it. Contact us at Petzold’s Marine Center today to find out more about our indoor boat storage services.

Stay Safe While Water Skiing or Wakeboarding

Tuesday, March 13th, 2018

Water skiing and wakeboarding are exhilarating. If you regularly use your boat to participate in these water sports, you can count on having a great time – unless you get hurt. Though most people who water ski and wakeboard don’t get injured, thousands of people do injure themselves during these activities every year in the U.S.

You can minimize your risk of injury by taking steps before you go out on the water and while you’re water skiing or wakeboarding. Learn what your risks are and what to do about them so you can count on having only happy memories.

What Are the Risks of Water Skiing and Wakeboarding?

Since water skiing and wakeboarding work differently, participants in these sports tend to have different injuries.

Water skiers are most at risk for injuring their legs, and the injury is most often a muscle strain or a joint sprain. On the other hand, wakeboarders tend to get more cuts, especially to their head. Unfortunately, wakeboarders are also more likely to incur a brain injury like a concussion.

No matter which type of sport you choose, you can lessen the risk by taking precautions.

How Can You Make Water Skiing and Wakeboarding Safer?

Follow these guidelines to keep water sports fun instead of harmful.

Prepare Thoroughly

Safety doesn’t start after your board the boat. You need to prepare for water sports beforehand to lessen your risk of injury.

Start by making sure you’re physically fit. Water sports can be physically challenging, and if your body isn’t prepared, you risk muscle injuries that you could have prevented. You’ll need to make sure that your core muscles, legs, and shoulders are in good shape before you go to the water.

Next, make sure that everyone involved in your activity knows the rules, like giving other boats plenty of distance and staying away from shallow water or obstructions. Learn the proper hand signals for a wakeboarder or water skier to communicate with people in the boat. If you’re all on the same page now, you’ll have a better chance of staying safe later.

Finally, make sure that your equipment is all in good shape. If your boat isn’t ready for your trip, get it repaired immediately. Repair or replace any wakeboarding or water skiing equipment that’s damaged as well.

Stay Safe on the Water

While you water ski or wakeboard, follow basic safety rules to ensure that you don’t get hurt:

  • Wear a life jacket.
  • Don’t go too fast, too soon. Never try something that’s more intense than you’re comfortable with.
  • Only hold onto the tow line with your hands. Don’t put part of you through the handle, and don’t wrap the tow line around yourself.
  • If you know you’re about to fall, try to fall backwards instead of forwards. Additionally, let go of the tow rope immediately, or you could get dragged through the water.
  • Stop when you’re tired – don’t overdo it.
  • Stop if the conditions are dangerous, such as a storm or night falling.
  • Do not participate in water sports while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Lastly, make sure that someone on the boat is watching you at all times. This spotter will tell the driver if you need the boat to slow down, speed up, or stop immediately.

Take these precautions so you can have a great time water skiing or wakeboarding. If you need your boat repaired or replaced to make your experience safer and more enjoyable, reach out to Petzold’s Marine Center today. We can help you find the perfect boat for your preferred water sport or service the boat you currently use.

Going Fishing? Don’t Forget These Items

Thursday, February 15th, 2018

Fishing is an activity enjoyed by many people of all ages. To enjoy the afternoon fishing with friends or family, you need a fair amount of preparation. Equip yourself with these items to make the fishing experience more enjoyable and land the next big fish.

Rod and Reel

Check certain details of the rod and reel to make sure they are ideal for the angler using them. For beginners, a spincasting reel is more manageable because it allows the line to freely cast out by the touch of a button. With these types of reels, beginners can easily maintain the amount of line they want.

When you pick out your rods, consider the size. Rods come in various sizes, and depending on the size of the angler, some sizes work better than others. Come prepared by bringing multiple rods and reels so that an angler has access to the ideal rod for their experience and height.

If you place a hook on your line before you begin to fish, secure the hook to the rod when you move it to prevent any injuries. Don’t ruin the afternoon by hooking someone when carrying the poles to the boat.

Stocked Tackle Box

A properly stocked tackle box is crucial for an afternoon of fishing. Different fish call for different equipment. Also, depending on the depth of the water, you might need a sinker to get the hook deep enough. Tackle boxes should be fully loaded with various sized hooks, spare line, sinkers, bobbers, pliers, scissors,
and lures. Stock your tackle box before you leave.

Accessories for Sun Exposure

Whether it’s in the tackle box or your pocket, carry sunscreen with you to protect against those harmful UV rays. Fishing is a sport that takes time, and you can’t always tell when the sun is a little too toasty. To protect against sunburn and skin damage, put a layer of sunscreen on before you head out for open waters and, when needed, reapply on board.

The water reflects the sunlight as well. Pack a pair of sunglasses so that you don’t strain your eyes and have better vision to find the best fishing spot. A hat is another item of protection against the sun as well as an iconic piece of clothing for anglers. Wear a hat with a wide brim to fish in style and safety.


Fish aren’t the only ones who can have a bite when fishing. Pack a small cooler or bag with something to munch on to keep your stamina up. Along with snacks, bring water to stay hydrated. This way you can spend as much time as possible on the water instead of turning in early because of an empty stomach.

Spacious Boat

Due to all the equipment required for fishing, a boat can quickly feel cramped, especially if you have several people on board. Don’t let an uncomfortable boat ride take away from the enjoyment of fishing. Look for a boat with a spacious design, such as an open bow with leg room to move around.

A boat with a center console creates more space for equipment and passengers. A center console leaves the perimeter of the boat open so an angler can move from one side to the other without barriers in the way. A skipper has a larger field of view with a center console as well. This is important to see other boat traffic when you move into popular fishing spots.

For your next fishing adventure, grab these items to help land fish and enjoy the time. To get a boat for fishing, see different ones available at Petzold’s Marine Center.

Recently Buy a Boat? What You Need to Know Before Launching

Monday, October 30th, 2017

If you’ve recently purchased a boat, congratulations! Whether you love fishing, sailing or enjoying a leisurely boat ride while you relax with your loved ones, you’re about to take your leisure time to a whole new level of outdoor enjoyment. This is especially true if you live in the Portland, Connecticut, area, where beautiful boating areas abound.

Before you launch your boat for the first time, though, you need to make sure you’re completely prepared for whatever comes your way. You also need to act in ways that keep you, your family members, other boaters and the environment safe while you enjoy your boat. (more…)

Petzolds Open House Coming Up

Monday, March 13th, 2017

Just like the arrival of robins and sap oozing from maple trees, Petzold’s Marine Center’s annual Open House and Boat Show has become a sure sign of spring. Boaters who are itching for the warmer days of boating season to arrive will be happy to know that the popular annual Petzold’s event is right around the corner.

This year’s annual Petzold’s Open House and Boat Show in Portland, Connecticut, is coming up on Saturday, March 25 and Sunday, March 26.

On display at the show will be more than 70 new and pre-owned boats, including new boats from Sabre, Regal, Back Cove and EdgeWater. There will also be door prizes, vendors and refreshments. Also during the show, attendees will find extra savings in the area’s largest discount marine store.

The event’s hours will be 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.

37 Indian Hill Ave Portland CT 06480

To learn more about the Petzold’s Marine Center Open House and Boat Show, contact us at, or by calling 860-342-1196.

A Boater’s Guide to Essex, Connecticut

Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

Essex, Connecticut is quintessential New England. It is steeped in history, with beautiful streets lined with Colonial and Federal architecture. It is home to interesting shops, restaurants, and art galleries. And it is ideal for boaters, from the area’s great fishing, to the scenic cruising opportunities along the Connecticut River, to the plenty of slips and facilities in town ready to welcome visitors. 

You’ll find Essex on the western shore of the Connecticut River, 5 nautical miles north of Long Island Sound. Follow channel markers up the river to G C “26,” and be sure to observe the no-wake zones along the way. Also, pay close attention to channel markers off Hayden’s Point, as rocks extend underwater right to the edge of the channel.

Essex has no shortage of boating facilities, so boaters will have plenty of options to choose from when looking for slips and moorings. Among them is Essex Boat Works (; 860 767-8276; VHF 9 & 68). Boaters can also find slips and moorings at the Essex Yacht Club (; 860-767-8121; VHF 68).

The scenic Connecticut River is ideal for cruising and is teeming with wildlife. Thousands of birdwatchers flock to the area each year for a chance to glimpse bald eagles, ospreys and the fall migration of tree swallows. The river also has many small creeks and coves worth exploring by small boat. If you need to rent a kayak, check out Action Sports ( in Old Saybrook.

On land, Essex has many attractions. You’ll enjoy walking the scenic streets, enjoying the architecture, visiting the many shops and art galleries, and dining at the area’s many fine restaurants. While in town, be sure to visit the Connecticut River Museum (, which explores the history of the river with exhibits, educational programs and special events. The Essex Steam Train and Riverboat tours ( – featuring a 65-foot replica paddlewheeler – are a favorite among kids. Another great way to see the area is aboard the 54-foot boat Riverquest (, which offers scenic cruises along the river.

For more information on Essex, Connecticut, visit

Tips on Buying a Boat

Thursday, January 19th, 2017

Owning a boat can change your life. As a boat owner, you can enjoy long days spent fishing, weekends spent waterskiing or wakeboarding, and evenings spent on the water socializing with friends.

Buying your first boat can be an intimidating process. But it doesn’t need to be so long as you’re well-prepared and know what to focus on. Here are a few things to consider when buying your first boat.

How will you use your boat?
With so many styles of boats available, you should consider how you will use your boat and then pick out a vessel to match your needs. Do you plan to use it for fishing, cruising or for watersports with the family? Such considerations will help determine the size, layout and amenities you need.

Where will you keep your boat?
One of the biggest considerations for new boaters is where they will keep their vessel. Will you keep your boat in a slip at a marina or on a mooring? Or are you planning to keep it at home and trailer it? You also need to consider if come winter you’ll store it on your property or if you’ll pay for storage at a facility.

What certification do you need?
Most states require boaters to have some type of boating education certification, so check on what your state requires. If you plan to boat in neighboring states, check if they accept your state’s certification or if you need one specific to that state.

Handling the walk-through and sea trial.
A boat for sale might look nice, but give it a thorough inspection to be sure it’s in a good shape. Inspect everything on it, from the deck and fittings to the engine and machinery. If you’re satisfied, try it out to see how it handles. Consider how fast it goes and how responsive it is. If you’re still interested, and the boat is in the water, have it hauled out to give it a more thorough inspection and make sure there are no problems below the waterline.

Closing the deal.
Don’t end up paying more than you should. Try not to be emotional when negotiating the price. Determine the boat’s value to you and try to stay close to it. Also, if you’re buying a used boat from a boatyard, check that there are no outstanding bills or liens on the boat.