No matter what kind of boat you rent on Boatsetter, the vessel’s ride, performance, and fuel efficiency are all important considerations while you’re out enjoying a day on the water.
Most vessels with planing hulls include systems that allow the captain to adjust the boat’s ride and performance by changing the angle of the Rent a boat. Own the moment.
1. Attitude adjustments
With the ability to only move up or down, drive trim is the easiest of the two to properly adjust. The drive trim is controlled by a button or toggle that is usually found on the shift and throttle control arm or on the dash.
Here is how to adjust drive trim:
- It’s important to start with the sterndrive or outboard engine all the way down.
- Increase the boat’s speed until it’s up on plane.
- Once on the plane, lift the drive or outboard slightly by tapping the “Trim Up” button.
- When you pull the throttle back to idle, trim the drive or engine back to the Down position.
As the drive or outboard engine lifts up, the bow will also lift until the boat picks up a little speed and the ride smooths out. This will improve the ride and also increase fuel efficiency.
3. Rock & roll
Trim tabs can be a little more challenging to learn, and new captains often struggle with their proper use. The trim tab rocker switches can usually be found side by side on the dash and are labeled Up and Down.
There are two ways to adjust trim tabs. If the boat lists (or leans) to one side, you can use the tabs to level it out. Here’s how:
- Bring the boat up to cruising speed.
- Use small adjustments to change the boat’s angle with 1-second “taps”.
- If the boat is leaning to starboard, tap the port side button Down.
- If the boat is leaning to port, tap the starboard tab button Down.
Once you stop the boat, the tabs should be put back in the up position. If you are running with a heavier load, here’s how to use trim tabs to help get the boat up on plane:
- Before throttling up, push both Down buttons for 10 seconds to extend the tabs.
- Throttle up to get the boat on plane.
- Use small adjustments to bring the tabs Up again until the boat’s ride smooths out.
Properly trimming a boat can improve the ride in rough water, decrease the time it takes to get on plane, increase the boat’s speed, and improve fuel efficiency.
These are all important reasons to learn how to properly trim a boat before you leave the dock on your next Boatsetter boat rental and upcoming trip. Here are a few posts we recommend for you:
Like what you read? Find more content like this at Boating Basics.
Boatsetter is a unique boat-sharing platform that gives everyone— whether you own a boat or you’re just renting — the chance to experience life on the water. You can list a boat, book a boat, or make money as a captain.
Chuck Warren fell in love with boats at 9 years old while helping to restore his grandfather’s 1939 44-foot Elco cruiser. A lifelong boater, Chuck has experience operating large and small vessels on the waters of the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean, and the Great Lakes.
During his 35-year marine industry career, Chuck has been the driver for several offshore powerboat racing teams, the chief engineer aboard a Caribbean research and salvage vessel, captain of a Florida Keys sunset cruise, and more.
Today, Chuck is a boating industry writer, copywriter, and captain who lives on his 40-foot boat in the summer when he isn’t delivering vessels around the Great Lakes or teaching new boaters to drive. Winters are split between the West Michigan lakeshore and wherever his travels take him.