You should always complete a pre-departure checklist of all required equipment and supplies prior to leaving the dock to ensure your boat is in good working order and properly equipped.
Keeping in mind that it is illegal to operate a vessel that is not seaworthy. Always give the boat a quick once-over before departing; you never know what you might find that is in need of repair until you look!
According to the Canadian Coast Guard, more than 50% of calls received by Canadian Rescue Coordination Centers are from boaters who are in trouble as a result of a mechanical failure of their boat. The most common cause of a breakdown is running out of fuel.