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Old 07-01-2020, 14:09   #1
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Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

For a variety of reasons, I haven't been able to get my boat in the water for the past two seasons. I'm planning on doing so this spring. I also haven't started the engine since then. It's a Yanmar GM1-3. The diesel tank is full. When I first bought the boat, it was in a similar situation of being on the hard for two years but the engine started without an issue.
To be on the safe side, I plan on replacing the oil and fuel filters and changing out the oil. Is there anything else I should do around the engine? As for the fuel, should I pour in any sort of additive to counter the fact that it's just sat there all this time?
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Old 07-01-2020, 14:47   #2
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

What climate? Subject to freezing temperatures? Amount of fuel involved?
I prefer to use roughly twice the recommended fuel stabilizer/anti gel BEFORE storage. That being said, we left Adeline in North Carolina with a full tank (aux 16gal) with no precautions for long term storage. While I believe adding an additive to remove any moisture and treat the fuel would work in my situation, for the cost of 16 gallons @$3/gal I would rather donate that fuel to the yard and avoid any possible hassles.
Change oil and replace oil and fuel filters, verify engine coolant didn't sneak out, check transmission fluid condition and level. Inspect or just replace raw water impeller.
Someone is bound to chime in something I forgot.
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Old 07-01-2020, 14:51   #3
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

As far as I know, diesel doesn't go off. Certainly not in the way that petrol does. It gets stuff growing in it and goes a bit darker but I've never had a problem with old (15 years plus) diesel burning. Sometimes I add a bit of petrol to it but never more than about 0.1%, and people here will say (not unjustified) that it is dangerous to do so.

The additives can't really rejuvenate old fuel, only prevent it from going bad in the first place if you add it before the fact.

Sounds like a good plan that you have. You might struggle to change the oil with the engine cold, especially if it's been sitting for a while.

Ah yes, and as Adeline says, change impeller.
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Old 07-01-2020, 15:15   #4
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

I would crank it with the key or fuel solenoid off until I saw oil pressure. Then start as normal. You just want to ensure the oil pump did not lose prime and you want to get oil to all the bearings before starting. If you are really anal, pull the glow plugs and put some oil, atf, marvel mystery oil or wd-40 in each cylinder. Then crank a bit to wet the cylinder walls.
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Old 07-01-2020, 22:26   #5
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodland Hills View Post
I would crank it with the key or fuel solenoid off until I saw oil pressure. Then start as normal. You just want to ensure the oil pump did not lose prime and you want to get oil to all the bearings before starting. If you are really anal, pull the glow plugs and put some oil, atf, marvel mystery oil or wd-40 in each cylinder. Then crank a bit to wet the cylinder walls.


Turn it over by hand for a couple of turns to ensure it's free and no water or other fluids collected in the cylinder before electric cranking it.

I think you can buy upper cylinder lube in a spray can and spray it into the intake manifold if you want to lube the top end.
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Old 07-01-2020, 22:49   #6
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

Good advice upthread!

Pretty sure this engine has decompression levers - if so, spin the engine over decompressed until you get oil pressure (as described up thread).

All pretty sure this engine doesn't have glow plugs so if you want to use any upper cylinder lubricant, spray it into the inlet manifold (also described upthread).
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Old 07-01-2020, 23:35   #7
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

Should the engine not start for whatever reason, don't forget to close the water intake, opening it again as soon as the engine is running.
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Old 08-01-2020, 12:02   #8
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

You may want to purge several ounces of diesel from between the tank valve and the primary filter into a jar and if it appears opaque or dirty, continue to purge, either until clear or until all fuel has been polished clean by another method. Then if previously the engine was not properly winterized, close the raw water seacock and lubricate the raw water pump impeller, remove injector(s), pour in only one ounce of upper cylinder lubricant at most, into cylinder and reinstall injector, leaving it about a 1/4 turn from fully tight in order to allow the lubricant to escape as a precaution against uncontrolled rpm's (runaway diesel effect from any unburned remaining lubricant), which a decompression lever cannot always be depended upon! Let it soak for a few days and then begin cranking the engine for several turns. Then tighten the injectors and proceed to start the engine with the seacock still closed to prevent possible seawater from backing up through the exhaust valve, but with another person at the ready to open the seacock when the engine starts. Also, keep a wooden board handy to block the air filter intake if the engine suddenly revs out of control. I should add that this use of upper cylinder lubricant is not needed if the exhaust manifold water jacket was purged with a rust inhibitor solution soon after the engine was last run. Otherwise, it can save some unsuspecting soul from an expensive engine overhaul, as salty humid air left sitting in the combustion chamber has left many marine engines with a piston ring rusted to the cylinder wall.
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Old 09-01-2020, 09:10   #9
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

Taipe recommends cranking engine using upper cylinder lubricant (w/0 compression to avoid a start) before starting the engine. That sounds like good advice. However I can't understand the few sentences following that:

this use of upper cylinder lubricant is not needed if the exhaust manifold water jacket was purged with a rust inhibitor solution soon after the engine was last run. Otherwise, it can save some unsuspecting soul from an expensive engine overhaul, as salty humid air left sitting in the combustion chamber has left many marine engines with a piston ring rusted to the cylinder wall.

I am wondering how can adding anything to the exhaust water jacket have any desirable effect on the cylinder itself?

Sorry if the answer seems obvious or the question seems a little naÔve.
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Old 09-01-2020, 09:28   #10
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Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

Donít over think it too much. Two years is not a long time.

Check the oil, Drain the fuel/ water separator (if you have one) and close the sea cock.

Turn it over by hand a few times then crank it over with the stop lever out till the oil pressure comes up.

Try to start it, open the seacock if it starts.

If it does start check for cooling water, big oil leaks and let it run for a few minutes till it warms up.

Change the oil, filters and impeller and go from there.
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Old 09-01-2020, 21:29   #11
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterman46 View Post
Taipe recommends cranking engine using upper cylinder lubricant (w/0 compression to avoid a start) before starting the engine. That sounds like good advice. However I can't understand the few sentences following that:

this use of upper cylinder lubricant is not needed if the exhaust manifold water jacket was purged with a rust inhibitor solution soon after the engine was last run. Otherwise, it can save some unsuspecting soul from an expensive engine overhaul, as salty humid air left sitting in the combustion chamber has left many marine engines with a piston ring rusted to the cylinder wall.

I am wondering how can adding anything to the exhaust water jacket have any desirable effect on the cylinder itself?

Sorry if the answer seems obvious or the question seems a little naÔve.

....as salty humid air left sitting in the combustion chamber has left many marine engines with a piston ring rusted to the cylinder wall.

I am wondering how can adding anything to the exhaust water jacket have any desirable effect on the cylinder itself?

Sorry if the answer seems obvious or the question seems a little naÔve.[/QUOTE]


No apologies needed. - You probably already know that saltwater returning from the heat exchanger is plumbed to the water jacket surrounding the exhaust chambers within the exhaust manifold w/o making contact with the exhaust gases until the saltwater arrives at the exhaust elbow (also called the mixing elbow) where it mixes with the exhaust gases and is carried overboard via the water muffler. But, when the engine is shut down, often times an engine exhaust valve is open, allowing salty humid air from the water muffler to circulate retrograde via the elbow, back up into the exhaust chamber and into the cylinder. The effect is fairly negligible when an engine is in frequent use. But, when maintenance is neglected for extended periods year after year, it's no wonder why this remains the number one reason good marine engines go to the bone yard.



To simplify the flushing procedure, on my list of projects this springtime is to plumb a 'T' fitting to the thru-hull kingston cock-valve. A ball valve on one of the ends of the 'T' fitting is for a separate hose into a 5-gallon bucket of non-corrosive/anti-freeze liquid to purge the saltwater out of the water lift muffler when the engine is started. It's essentially the same propylene glycol sold by RV supply shops for winterizing potable water systems and is not an environmental hazard.
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Old 10-01-2020, 08:22   #12
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Re: Starting engine after long (2 years) idle

Thanks to all for the valuable advice! I won't get around to this until the weather warms up a bit but now I feel confident about what I need to do.
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