Category Archives: Shoalwater News

New Texas Boat Trailer Laws

Here are the “New Texas Boat Trailer Laws,” which are now state regulations. We wanted to make you all aware of them. They are now a requirement by the state.

Trailers Inspection Requirements

Certain trailers require an inspection prior to registration. If your trailer has a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) that is more than 4,500 pounds, an inspection is required.
This includes trailers, semitrailers, boat trailers, pole trailers, mobile homes, travel trailers.
Note: Farm trailers displaying a farm license plate are not required to be inspected. If you are unsure about the gross vehicle weight of your trailer, check your registration receipt for the weight

What’s Inspected by Vehicle Type

Items of Inspection for a Trailers

05.06 Inspect All Trailers, Semitrailers, Pole Trailers, or Mobile Homes Exceeding 4,500 Pounds Actual Gross Weight or Registered Weight For: (Listed in suggested order of inspection) Refer to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, if required.* Check for evidence of Financial Responsibility on towing vehicle1. Brakes (system) (If gross weight exceeds 4,500 pounds)
2. Tires
3. Wheel Assembly
4. Safety Guards or Flaps (if four tires or more on rearmost axle) Pole trailers exempt.
5. Tail Lamps (2)
6. Stop Lamps (2)
7. License Plate Lamp (1)
8. Rear Red Reflectors (2)
9. Turn Signal Lamps
10. Clearance Lamps
11. Side Marker Lamps
12. Side Reflectors
13. Side Marker Lamps and Reflectors (30 feet or more in overall length)
(Refer to Reference Section as per lighting diagrams and as applicable to the particular trailer being inspected.)
14. Serial or Vehicle Identification Number
15. Window Tint.

How to Clean Zebra Mussels off your Boat

Its the law in Texas, you must deal with this pesky little species on your boat. Below is a diagram of where they often hide. Here is how to clean Zebra Mussels off your boat!







Clean your boat, trailer and gear by removing all plants, animals and foreign objects.


Drain all water from the boat, including the motor, bilge, live wells and bait buckets, before leaving the lake.


Dry the boat and trailer for a week or more before entering another water body. If unable to let it dry for at least a week, wash it with a high-pressure washer and hot (at least 140-degree), soapy water.

Are Your Boats Ready For Spring

via Boating Industry

Those of you in snowy states are probably cheering the recent temperature increases as much as I am. I don’t know about you, but I am definitely ready to go boating again. But what about your customers who bought their first boat this past year? Are they ready?

One of the most intimidating aspects of boat ownership is the maintenance, especially for new boaters, and the cost of maintenance is the number one reason boaters give up the recreation.

As the temperatures are finally starting to warm up in the seasonal regions, those new boaters are getting as anxious as we are to get on the water again. They followed all of the necessary steps to winterize their boat, but that was some time ago. What needs to be done to get the boat ready for spring?

Dealers should be active in working with customers to make sure they are comfortable performing the necessary maintenance, not only to keep those boaters in the sport but also to further establish loyalty to the dealership.

Send an email reminder to customers to get their boats ready for spring, but make it a little more special. Add a checklist that helps them remember all the little things they may forget when prepping their boats.

Discover Boating created an easy-to-print checklist for spring start-up that you can provide your customers, which asks customers to refer to their owner’s manual for any manufacturer-specific recommendations. What if they didn’t have to dig through their manual? Your customers would be wowed if you provided tips for prepping their specific brands for spring. And of course, be sure to extend an offer to visit your service department if they have any questions.

The time invested in building trust is never time wasted. This personal reminder demonstrates to the customer just how much you value their safety and want their boating experience to be hassle-free. When they need service done on their boat and want to give the job to someone they know will take care of them, no one else but you will come to mind. And if you don’t have time to provide excellent service to your customers, what do you have time for?

To see the full article by Brianna Liestman …………Click Here

The Basics of Boat Buying

The basics of boat buying is quite different than purchasing an automobile, basically a mandatory item, boats are usually the fulfillment of an owners dream. They are more than just a mode of transportation; they are a special form of recreation designed for sheer pleasure. When purchasing your first boat its good to keep in mind that it will be a part of your life and family for possibly a decade or more. This purchase does not need to be based on price alone. Sometimes, just looking for the cheapest deal will cost you a whole lot more in the end. Here are some great tips to help with the purchase of your first boat.

Type of Boat

First examine what you are imagining when thinking about owning a boat. If you are wanting to go on those early morning fishing excursions with buddies, then you will obviously gear your purchase toward a boat with amazing fishability features. If its entertaining and lots of guests, your going to want to look at a luxury model pontoon. Once you choose your type of boat there are still others issues to consider. Does your family need a swim platform, water skiing capabilities, grill, refrigerator, plenty of storage and restroom area or would rod holders, livewells, trolling motor and fishfinder be better utilized. 

New vs. Used

First determine your budget for purchasing a boat. As most boats are purchased with loans be sure to check into the loan terms and conditions. Then make sure that you can afford the payments trying to keep all debt below a comfortable 35% of income. At this point, keeping in mind all boats are negotiable, you should be able to purchase the vessel you want with some homework. If you decide to go the used boat route, to get a little bang for your buck, be sure and ask some questions. Here are a few good ones to get you started:

  1. How many owner’s has the boat had?
  2. When did the last owner purchase the boat?
  3. How many miles are on the engine?
  4. How often was it serviced and when was the last time?
  5. What problems has it had in the past?
  6. Why are they selling the boat?
  7. Do you trust whom you are buying the boat from?

 Size of Boat

 This is one of the most important aspects of boat buying. Nailing down the correct size boat for you and your family, more than any other item, will insure happiness with your purchase for years to come. A good rule of thumb is buying the biggest boat you can afford, especially with a growing family. Buy within your budget, but with that said, buying big is something you will never regret. Boats attract friends and entertainment is one of the highest functions of boating. Also, the more storage space the better. There are so many items you will find yourself wishing you had room for if you purchase to small.

In conclusion, when purchasing your first boat, figure out what you can comfortably afford first then purchase for type and size. After that, it is best to decide if you want new or used. With all those considerations out of the way, you will be in a better position to determine what you can afford when it comes to all the bells and whistles. Using this method you can’t go wrong and will enjoy your boat for years to come. Happy Boating!

Don’t Pick Up Hitchhikers On Your Boat

Protecting our water resources can be as simple as washing and drying off your boat before leaving the ramp.  Aquatic hitchhikers are harmful plants, animals and other organisms that are invasive to many water bodies and when established in a water body, can create dramatic changes. Here is a great little article on dealing with aquatic hitchhikers on your boat from the folks at Take Me Fishing. We will post the link to the original article at the bottom of this blog post. Don’t Pick Up Hitchhikers On Your Boat!

What can you do?  Read through the handy tips from Trailer Boats Magazine and learn about some of the more prevalent hitchhikers and what you can do to prevent others from entering our lakes, rivers and streams. Check out Trailer Boats Magazine to learn more about boating today.

Why should we protect our waters from invasive organisms?  Because these hitchhikers can:

Content Provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

11 Secrets To Help Your Boat Live Longer

There are many ways you can help add to life to your boat. Here are just a few
good ones to follow regularly. To read more about them in detail, just click on the link below:

11 Secrets To Help You Boat Live Longer

1.  Wash, Wax, Flush and Cover
2. Bring Back Your Gelcoat
3. Keep it Gelcoat Restored With Natural Wax
4. Air Out Sealed And Unused Boats Regularly
5. Clean The Carburetor
6. Protect Zippers With Anhydrous Lanolin
7. Clean the Toilet Holding Tank Vent Screen With A Toothbrush & White Vinegar
8. Perform Voltage-Drop Test To Detect Electrical Problems Early
9. Keep Engine Controls & Steering Cables Well Lubricated
10. Clean Connectors Regularly
11. Keep Gaskets Sealed

Use these and much more useful information found in the article from the folks to keep your boat in fantastic shape for many more outdoor excursions with your family. Come by Texas Marine if you need to purchase products for your boat care routine.

The Bimini Top: Perfectly Fits Any Boating Lifestyle

Feature Bimini (Custom)The Bimini Top is a perfect addition to any boating lifestyle you find yourself venturing into. It is a lifesaver for Mom, when she hears the laughter of her family having so much fun they don’t want to go inbimini on pontoon, but Junior is getting a serious sunburn. They can be priceless for Dad, who is thrilled with the realization that the whopper he has been chasing all morning is within reach and suddenly a summer shower hits. Years ago boaters did not realize the benefits a Bimini Top can add to their enjoyment on the water. They almost looked at it as a nuisance item. These days, everyone is getting Bimini Tops because of the tremendous comfort level they give boaters during those hot sticky humid summer days. That added value to the boater’s outdoor experience is well worth the extra effort it takes to quickly pop up a top for protection and comfort. 

Bimini Top Manufacturing Video

Chapparal Sunbrela (Custom)

Texas Marine carries the highest quality Bimini Top sold today. A company called Carver makes it and it’s called the “Sunbrella.” The video above explains the painstaking process they take to build these tops at the level they do. Why don’t you come by Texas Marine Parts Dept. today and let us fit your boat with one of these amazing tops for your comfort and enjoyment. Just give us a call at (409) 898-7632 or come by today.

Popular Boat Types: The Versatile Bay Boat

There are so many types of boats on the market that one could never touch on all of them. This blog series will attempt to highlight the various types relevant to Southeast Texas and Southwest Louisiana. By far, one of the top boat types in demand here is the ever-popular Bay Boat! According to Discover Boating’s website, “Bay fishing boats are specialized and most popular in coastal areas where snook, redfish, tarpon, sea trout, permit and bonefish live. They can float and run in water less than two feet deep and are ideal for fishing with three people on board. A bay boat reserves little room for creature comforts, giving large casting decks on the bow and stern, plus tackle storage, rod holders and livewells instead of upholstered seating and carpet.” It is all about the fishing with this boat. However, there are now a few new models at Texas Marine designed with luxury in mind, such as the NauticStar 210 Coastal. It offers ammenities like cushioned seats and wide V-Berths for increased comfort while still maintaining perfect fish ability.

These days, Bay boats have become a hot commodity with the bass fishing community also. Bay boats are very versatile and can be utilized quite efficiently in fresh water. They are low profile, inshore fishing boats. They are intended for protected coastal waters because of their construction, in contrast to the open ocean. However, this type construction with rolled edges and flat decks is just as effective at the lake, inshore and offshore. In boat blogger John Brownlee’s words “Bay boats have proven incredibly popular with people who love fishing in shallow water, but who aren’t necessarily interested in sight-casting to tailing bonefish all the time. Bay boats are adept al all but the shallowest of inshore tasks and can be called upon for almost anything else…you have the ability to venture into a larger body of water with less fear of being caught in a sudden storm. The higher freeboard gives you more security.”

Texas Marine is the #1 dealer of NauticStar Bay boats in the entire nation. NauticStar standard of quality has earned them the top spot as the #1 Bay Boat sold in all of Texas and Louisiana. In their own words they are “Superbly engineered boat lines to fit your lifestyle. Whether you’re an avid fisherman, a professional or someone who enjoys hitting the water with family and friends.” One of Texas Marines’ most popular is the 214 XTS Shallow Bay boat and its exceptional for fishing in skinny water. This boat can maneuver through some of the narrowest shallow water areas you can find in the Sabine River bottoms without sacrificing performance and stability. It is the perfect crossover boat for fresh or salt water. Its loaded with features such as 2 built in aerated live wells, bait well, bow fish box, 3 jump seats and 20 rod holders plus so much more.

Another popular brand Texas Marine sells is Shoalwater. There is just something magical about skimming over a clear tequila colored skinny water flat, deep in the estuaries of the Gulf Coast. You must experience that moment to believe it. Most in the boating community have never experienced it because they don’t know where to find a boat that can go that shallow. If you know where to look they are quite plentiful. Texas Marine stocks more Shoalwater boats than any other dealer in the nation. The Shoalwater’ 23’ Cat design has become a top seller for a good reason. You can have the best of both worlds with this one. Shallow water fishing without having to feel crowed. When fishing Galveston Bay, with a buddy, this can be a huge asset because it is a specific type of boat capable of skimming across some of the shallowest backwater flats imaginable. This boat can be “launched and run in a mud puddle,” as one skinny water forum post recently put it. The Shoalwater 15′ Bay boat weighs in at around 550 pounds. If you pair it with a small motor, it can reach the most isolated rarely fished locations. Polling anything heavier to fish these flats will wear out even the most determined angler. Light boats, like Shoalwater, are much more productive in these type waters.

Fishing a Bay boat in freshwater is a bit tricky and depends largely on the boat model. You may have to do some rigging on your own to make it more accommodating for bass fishing, but that too depends on the angler. Some say installing rails around the boat, for rodholders when trolling, bimini top for hot days and just making lake fishing easier is the way to go. These boats make the best all-purpose boats any crossover angler could want. They work in the largest lakes and reservoirs, rivers (like the Mississippi), Oxbows and private lakes. They are able to meet any demand except the open ocean. Heck, you can even rig some of these Bay boats up for catching gator.

Come on by today and let Texas Marine show you these  top performing all purpose boats for your next excursion.

Cracking the Code…

Many people believe that the letters found stamped on the barrel of a Yamaha engine prop are representative of its name. An example of this would be the “V MAX SHO” propeller and how often it is referred to as a “T-1” prop by bass fisherman. However, this is an inaccurate assumption concerning those mysterious little codes. They are actually used by the engineers at Yamaha to refer to the outside diameter of that propellers exhaust tube. 

01DIAMETERMany outboards utilize “through-hub” exhaust, meaning that the exhaust travels through the gearcase and out the center of the prop. The diameter of the gearcase exhaust opening is referred to as “gearcase size” and runs between 3”- 4.75” in size. 

Engines using hub exhaust typically have the same outer diameter as the gearcase opening. A V6 outboard has a 4.75” exhaust opening; they are referred to as a “four and three-quarter” gearcase. The props that fit them are referred to as “four and three-quarter” props also. So, to help differentiate between the, Yamaha takes the additional step and uses letter codes to indicate each size.  

Below are examples representing gearcase code: 

F is 3 inches (i.e. F25)
G is 3.5 inches (i.e. F30-F60)
K is for 4.25 inches (F70-F115)
M/T is 4.75 inches (i.e. F150-F300)
X is 5.25 inches for industrial exclusive V8 outboards

Taking all this into account, the same size designator can appear on many different series’ of Yamaha’s props. Their Saltwater Series II can V MAX SHO props both carry the T designation on the barrel. They are used on the same size gearcase, but in completely different applications. 

Keep all this in mind the next time your fishing buddy describes his prop to you as a “T-1” prop. You may just be able to school him on how to crack that mysterious little code.


Texas Marine Parts & Products

Startron (Custom)STARTRON: Fuel Additive

Enzyme Treatment

With all the issues that come along with using Ethanol today STARTRON is not just a good idea, its almost a requirement.


The 4 main problems Ethanol causes are:

· Debris in Fuel
· Excessive Water in the Fuel and Phase Separation
· Ethanol Fuels Break Down Quickly
· Ethanol causes lost Power, Performance and Decreased Fuel Economy

STARTRON addresses all these and more. Ethanol is a powerful solvent and it strips away build up and disperses it back into the engines fuel. STARTRON enzymes breakdown debris into sub-micron sized particles that your engine can easily burn away.

Ethanol also attracts moisture, which forms an ethanol/water solution. It then mixes into your engines gasoline. It is usually somewhere around .5% water which is being held in suspension within your fuel. When the fuel cools significantly the mixture drops out of suspension to the bottom of your tank diluting the fuels octane. STARTRON reduces the molecular cluster size greatly, allowing the moisture to be disbursed throughout the fuel in sub-micron droplets which are safely eliminated.

Ethanol fuel breaks down over a short period of time. As ethanol evaporates the fuel loses octane and becomes stale causing hard starts, pinging and knocking. This can rob our engine of its much-needed power and cause damage. STARTRON is a powerful fuel stabilizer helping to prevent the fuel from breaking down for up to two years. It improves octane levels in stale, sub-standard or non-spec fuel. It can many times rejuvenate stale fuel restoring it to serviceable condition. This will prevent the engine hard starts, pinging and knocking plus keep power at peak performance.

STARTRON enzyme formula breaks down large clusters of fuel molecules creating more surface area. It allows additional oxygen to react during combustion resulting in a more complete burn of fuel. This improves fuel economy, engine power, throttles response and reduces toxic emissions. It will also remove carbon deposits keeping your engine clean. STAR TRON is the answer to all your ethanol problems. Come by Texas Marine and get yours today!!!