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Old 08-04-2013, 17:08   #16
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Re: Yanmar Engine Life Expectancy?

When we bought our new boat with a new Yanmar 4JH2E I hired a mechanic from the local Yanmar dealer who dealt primarily with commercial fishing boats.

He told me that the commercial Yanmars would easily run 10,000 hours because the commercial owners put them at 70% - 80% power and ran them like that for days at a time (it is a LONG way from Tacoma WA to SE Alaska). They kept them hot and revving.

He said they had serviced lots of glazed and failed Yanmars in sailboats - all failed because, as dozens others have said, Yanmar is a high RPM engine. He said it is mandatory to run at 3000 RPM (the 4JH2E) for five minutes every 5 hours or more often. He also said it is critical to run the engine at 3000 RPM for 10 seconds after docking - then let is slow to idle for a couple seconds and shut it off.

And... if you start the engine - get it all the way up to FULL operating temperatures before shutting it down. Not reaching full temp (190 F) will not "cook" the acids and water out of the oil and will lead to early internal corrosion.

He told us to set our Maxprop so we could comfortably run the engine at 2600 - 2750 RPM forever. Our Max RPM is 3200 for an hour and 3400 for five minutes (I think) and he wanted the engine to consistently run in the 70% (~2400) to 85% (2850) range under normal cruising.

And - he said the worst thing a Yanmar owner can do is charge a 12V battery bank with a 135 amp alternator - it puts less than 3 HP load on the engine and will quickly glaze it - thus our huge solar array.

We've followed his advice and have 2850 great hours on the engine.

PS - while testing the injectors at the dock, in neutral, he had the engine running above 4000 RPM - don't know how far 'cause the tack stops at 4000. I picked up my feet to avoid the flying pistons and rods but he assured me no Yanmar has ever blown due to high RPM.

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Old 08-04-2013, 17:37   #17
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Re: Yanmar Engine Life Expectancy?

Every Yanmar mechanic I've ever used has given the same advice: run the engine at least 80% of WOT. I have the 75 hp turbo currently, and take it up to at least 2,800 RPM if I'm going to be running it more than ten minutes. And every few hours I'll run it at 3,200 RPM just to make it happy, although at that point I'm using fuel inefficiently because I'll be doing hull speed.

cruising is entirely about showing up--in boat shoes.
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Old 10-05-2015, 13:32   #18
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Re: Yanmar Engine Life Expectancy?

Hi I would like to add just a bit about Diesel motors I have had as light plants in the oilfield, One motor Perkins Diesel I had ran 27000 hours before needing a rebuild.
And the water pump had given up at that time, We were doing oil sampling on this motor to see just how long it could go, The motor ran 24 hours a day with only shut downs to do oil changes, at 250 to 400 hours in between changes,
I am still on the hard and shopping But I would like to thing Sail boat motors have a lot more life in them then 2000 hours.

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