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Old     (Showmethebutter)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-30-2010, 7:16 AM Reply   
Im borrowing a mates 2009 Four Winns 222 SL in 2 weeks to take over to the Isle of Wight festival. We went down to the boat today to do some bits. The boat is on blocks ashore and is due to go back on its dock next week. When we got there I opened the ski locker and it was full of water! Looked in the engine compartment and the bottom 1/3 of the engine was under water!

The yard staff are supposed to undo the bung when they store boats ashore for the winter but for whatever reason they didnt.

We have had some heavy rain and as the bow ladder locker drains into the bilges the batterys must have gone flat as the bilge pump would have been constantly running. Both batterys have now bwwn put on charge as they were totally dead.

The engine is a 5.7 volvo 5.7 (320hp) and as the lower 30% of the engine was submerged the starter motor was totally underwater. 'Luckly' the ecu and control boxes were still dry.

So where do we go from here? We have pulled the bung and drained out all the water. The batterys are on charge. Do we just go right ahead and try to fire it up or is there any preventative measures we should take first?
Old     (joesell)      Join Date: Apr 2001       05-30-2010, 8:45 AM Reply   
I'd check the oil first. Make sure it's not milky at all.
Old     (camassanger)      Join Date: Oct 2009       05-30-2010, 9:02 AM Reply   
Definitely change the oil.
Old     (Showmethebutter)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-30-2010, 9:22 AM Reply   
I did check the oil earlier and it seemed fine.

How would water get into the oil if the bottom of the engine is sitting in water. Im worried the starters gonna be junk.
Old     (Silverbullet555)      Join Date: May 2010       05-30-2010, 9:33 AM Reply   
The starter will be junk. If it works right now, it will likely fail at the worst possible time. I would be looking at the storage contract to see if removing the plug is part of the contract. If it is, a conversation is in order about them replacing the starter.

Water can work it's way in when submerged so I would change the oil, get it up to operating temp and then check the oil for ANY milkiness. After running for a while I would immediately change the oil again no matter what I saw. Batteries could have been negatively impacted as well so keep that in mind.
Old     (Showmethebutter)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-30-2010, 9:43 AM Reply   
Thanks James. Its not so much in the contract, its just 'what they usually do' My friend travels a lot and was not there when the boat was lifted.

As its an I/O is there any chance of water having got to the gimble bearing/UJ joints or will they be sealed in the same way that the bellows seal the leg from the outside?
Old     (jtnz)      Join Date: Sep 2007       05-30-2010, 5:32 PM Reply   
Fresh water may have gotten into the transmission. Check the dipstick on top of the stern drive and look for water mixed in the trans oil. You could also undo the bellows on the drive shaft (top one) and carefully pry it up (don't tear or nick the rubber, or damage the surface it mates to) to see if water leaks out, you won't need to move it much. That bellows covers the universal joints, so you'll probably want to get some new grease in there, there should be grease nipples all over the outside of the drive as well as one on the bellhouse for the bearings inside.

If you can get them to replace the starter I would, but it probably won't have done too much damage. I've cleaned out a few starters that got drowned in salt with hot fresh water and it didn't do them any harm just gotta get it dry afterwards.

Last edited by jtnz; 05-30-2010 at 5:35 PM.
Old     (Showmethebutter)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-30-2010, 11:58 PM Reply   
Thanks Jos. That clears up a few things in my mind!
Old     (olmoomba)      Join Date: Apr 2010       06-02-2010, 10:52 AM Reply   
Just drain all the fluids and start fresh. Water won't mix unless you run it.
Old     (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       06-02-2010, 11:59 AM Reply   
Starter, alternator, blower & bilge pump will all fail..... if not right away, very soon.
Old     (gdavid)      Join Date: Feb 2010       06-02-2010, 12:28 PM Reply   
I would pull the outdrive and replace the gimbal bearing because water most likely got to it from inside of the boat and the bearings are pitted with rust. I would also replace the starter. The bilge pump and blower should be fine, as the pump is submersible and the blower should be mounted above deck level (typically on the transom). You don't have a transmission to worry about water getting into and your drive gear lube should be sealed anyway so that should be fine.

Carefully inspect all of the limber holes leading into the bildge for blockages. When a boat fills up with water it often traps water outside of the stringers and poorly placed limber holes will not allow them to drain properly. Sometimes a little debris left over from construction can clog them up.


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