Having the right tools to hand will make servicing and maintenance of your canal boat / narrowboat simpler and ensure you have the right equipment in an emergency.

Maintenance Toolkit… A Shopping List of Tools & Equipment!

Owning a narrow boat, whether it is a new build or second hand, will require you to complete regular maintenance and often emergency repairs. A basic toolkit is essential to have on board your narrowboat and even though storage may be limited, there are certain items you should always have to hand when you are cruising or moored up.

The list below is not an exhausted list of everything you will ever need on to use on your canal boat, but designed to help those starting out the marine world!

Basic Toolkit

  • Adjustable and/or ratchet spanner (especially useful for hard top reach jobs on board your boat)
  • Electrical screwdriver
  • Flat head and Phillips screwdrivers (a set with changeable bit sizes is ideal and space saving)
  • Cordless drill
  • Tape measure
  • Pliers
  • Socket set
  • Releasable cable ties (these have numerous uses on your boat and can be invaluable)
  • Cable strippers
  • Electrical tape
  • Jubilee clips
  • Allen keys
  • Stanley knife
  • Mole grips
  • Hack saw
  • Wood saw
  • Axe (essential if you have a solid fuel stove)

Additional Equipment

The list of other equipment you ‘may’ need at some point is never ending, particularly whilst you are cruising as it is essential you are prepared for all eventualities.

Here are some other suggestions of equipment that may be useful to have on board your narrow boat:

  • Sea magnet – a mega strong magnet to retrieve items lost over board your narrowboat
  • Fishing net – for retrieval of items that do float
  • Jump leads
  • Spare fuses
  • Jerry can
  • Stove ropes, glue and heat resistant silicone – these quick fixes can literally be a life saver!
  • PTFE tape
  • Latex gloves
  • Gaffer tape
  • Oil/suction pump
  • Shoreline electrical extension
  • Carrabin – multiple uses!
  • Hose adaptors and fittings – never underestimate how useful a large selection of adaptors will be as many water points have different fittings. The connectors can easily be forgotten and left at the water point, so duplicates are also essential.
  • Wind up torch and a head torch
  • Multi-tool pen knife
  • Foldaway trolley – whether it’s for carrying coal, full cassette toilets or the weekly food shop these are handy to have on-board and folded up in your car!
  • Disposable nappies! Yes really, they are ultra-absorbent and reasonable cheap (7-10p  per nappy on average) but can really help to mop up the last remains of any spillages

And finally the one tool that you will not require on board your canal boat ….. a spirit level!

Maintenance Toolkit

Not what you're looking for? Try some other items within this chapter...