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Old 12-12-2010, 06:24   #1
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Bilge Pump Test . . .

Just some food for thought here.
It was raining today and I did some cleaning up and service stuff around the boat. Somebody told me ages ago that I should test the bilge pump from time to time so I did.
After about 5 buckets of water nothing happen and the bilge pump was clearly submerged. I got my multimeter out and found the power is at the pump but one wire of the float switch had fallen off. It was badly corroded.
I changed the connectors and put it all back together. Working fine now.
So just a little reminder to my fellow sailors we often take for granted that things keep working.....well this little pump did not.

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Old 12-12-2010, 07:13   #2
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Choosing a brand of bilge pumps is very important. I have had some that after a year the shaft from the motor to the impeller rusted tight. Others have copper wires instead of tinned copper wires. Buying the least expensive is not always best - yet I have seen expensive ones also with un-tinned copper wires.
- - Only experience and frequent testing will demonstrate which brands are reliable and which are crap (sometimes expensive crap).

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Old 12-12-2010, 07:16   #3
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Location: Clear Lake Marine Services - Seabrook, Texas
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Boat in the slip mext to me al,ost sank at the dock 2 months ago.
It's a motor sailer ans sits a lot higher than me. Hot to the boat late the night before. Got up in the morning making coffee and looked out the galley portlight and noticed it sitting lower. Was finishing getting dressed when the marina personnel arriver.
They pimped with a 2" gasoline pump for a little over 20 ninutes. When the marina personnel stepped onto the boat, the water shiftes and I thought the boat was going to roll oner onto mine.

They said thaat there was 3' of water above the cabin sole. That's a lot of water and damage. Coulf have been worse, but not by a lot..
Formerly Santana
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Everyday is a good day for SAILING!!!!
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Old 12-12-2010, 07:39   #4
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Around here....Marinas Personnel will NOT board your boat.

They will give you a phone call, sometimes, if your boat is sinking.

Thanks to the liar----I mean lawyers.
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Old 12-12-2010, 09:07   #5
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After about 5 buckets of water nothing happen /QUOTE]

Why not just pull up on the switch with your hand? Saves a lot of water toting. And gives the same result. We discovered ours wasn't working when we were looking to find out why the transmission wasn't working. Every boat project is subject to three complications, at lest one of which is subject to this rule. (Stolen from Mike Hughes on On-Line Yacht Club, now lost in the mists of time.)
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Old 12-12-2010, 10:32   #6
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Our boat leaks enough rain water into the bilges that our bilge pumps are automatically tested!
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:34   #7
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Any boat that sits in the water.......

should have a check list of items that need to be inspected on a monthly basis. And an underway check list.

Everything from Air-horn's to Zerk's. Every piece of a boat has a function and needs to be maintained.

One simple thing like a cotter pin can ruin ones whole day and may even sink a boat if it goes catastrophic. Boats are like airplane and require preflight/periodic inspections. That one frayed wire or loose screw is the fist sign of a failure.

For you newbies to boating, professionalism will keep you and your love ones safe out there.

One thing that surprised me in the boating card requirements was the lack of instruction of the importance of maintenance other then keeping the boats safety gear up to date (flares & lifejackets). Prevention is the best medicine not an after the failure fix.

Faithful are the Wounds of a Friend, but the Kisses of the Enemy are Deceitful! ........
The measure of a man is how he navigates to a proper shore in the mist of a storm!
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bilge, bilge pump

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