sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Simple Inspections to keep your sailing boat's engine in top shape

Simple Inspections to keep your sailing boat's engine in top shape

'Which of these pictures shows what you’d rather be doing next voyage?'    .    Click Here to view large photo

Do you know the five best ways to keep your sailing boat's diesel engine running like a lion--and save you huge dollars in the future? John Jamieson (Captain John) here shows you the most vital engine checks you need to make aboard your cruising sailboat for trouble-free cruising.


You don't need to be a mechanic to keep your sailing boat's diesel running in tip-top shape. I'm a ten-thumbed sailor when it comes to auxiliaries, but I've learned just what's needed to keep these beasts happy and roaring like a well-fed lion.

Diesel engine guru Nigel Calder says that diesel engines '...require little routine maintenance, but the little maintenance they do need is absolutely necessary'. Calder specifies three major areas of concern to all skippers of sail or power: clean air, clean fuel, and clean oil.

That's because the tiniest speck of dirt or contamination inside will throw your iron-genny into a temper tantrum that creates a chain reaction of problems. And that can lead to $1000's in repair bills and wasted cruise time while you wait for parts and repairs. Calder says that 'once dirt gets into an engine, properly cleaning it out is impossible'. Follow these easy five vital inspections and preventative maintenance recommendations to keep your diesel engine in great shape.

1. Test the Heat Exchanger Water Level:

Check the engine coolant level through the oblong-shaped heat exchanger header tank (see illustration) on top of the engine. Make sure the header tank is cool to the touch, remove the radiator pressure cap on top of the tank and stick a finger in. Keep the coolant level within a half inch of the top.

Many engines have an externally mounted expansion tank that collects freshwater coolant as it circulates through the engine. Make sure the expansion tank coolant level stays within a half inch of the full mark (or at the level indicated by your manual).

2. Replace the Air Filter:

Diesels require lots of squeaky clean air to run well. If dust enters your engine, it could affect the compression. Without good compression, your engine won't burn diesel fuel all the way. That unburned fuel spits out your exhaust as black smoke. Your engine will no longer have the power it once had.

Swap out air filters often. It's one of the most forgotten components on small diesels because it often hides on one side of the engine. Carry spares aboard if you cruise. In a pinch, take the filter out and tap it on all sides around the surface to remove dirt and dust.

3. Swap Out All Fuel Filters:.

90% of all diesel engine problems are related to dirt, water, and bacteria in your fuel. If these contaminants make it up to your injectors, you could end up with $100s or $1000s in repair bills. Cut these robbers off at the pass with good, powerful filtration.

The primary filter serves as the first guardian between your fuel tank and small diesel engine. It stops big particles of dirt and grime. The best type of primary filter has a clear, separator bowl on the lower part of the filter.

The separator bowl traps water and contaminants and has a drain plug on the bottom. Shine a light through the bowl. If it's dirty, drain the water and contaminants. Replace the filter element on top of the separator bowl.

If your engine uses a non-separator type of filter, you will be unable to see the condition of the fuel. Change the filter element inside a non-separator type of fuel filter at least once a year to be on the safe side.

The secondary filter serves as the final guardian before fuel flows into your engine. It stops tiny, microscopic particles of dirt and grime that were missed by the primary filter.

Locate the secondary filter on or near the engine body (see illustration). On many engines, it's camouflaged like a chameleon. Follow the fuel line from the primary filter up to your engine to find the secondary filter. Change the secondary filter element at least once a year to protect your delicate and expensive injectors.

4. Change the Oil, Gasket, and Filter:

Your engine relies on oil for lubrication, cooling, and dirt-trapping. Always change the filter and gasket when you change the oil. Run your engine for a few minutes ahead of time to get any contaminants into the old oil. This makes draining more complete.

5. Install a New Raw-Water Impeller Pump:

Your raw water pump draws water from the sea, through the sea-water strainer and up to the engine. In small diesel engines with separate fresh water systems, sea water provides a cooling jacket to lower internal temperatures. In straight raw-water cooled engines, you need every bit of that sea water circulation to keep your engine cool and happy.

Make these diesel engine inspections often to keep your cruising sailboat in tip-top shape. You will save lots of money for cruising--and lots of time for sailing--wherever in the world you choose to cruise!

John Jamieson (Captain John) with 25+ years of experience shows sailing skippers the skills they need for shorthanded sailing success. Visit his website at www.skippertips.com and sign up for a free sailing tips newsletter and learn how you can gain instant access to hundreds of sailing articles, sailing video tutorials, sailing topic eBooks, and live discussion forums.




by Captain John Jamieson

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=88086

11:37 PM Sat 3 Sep 2011 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.


News - USA and the World















The first annual WetaFresh is a big success by Tim Wieringa, Muskegon, MI


















Techno 293 Worlds - France and Italy claim titles by International Windsurfing Association,














420 World Championship - Singapore and Spain out front by 420 International Class Association,




















2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup final qualification system published
Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac - Karma Sailing Group wins
Red Bull 49erFX: Easing into the Olympic scene at Rio
Kempe thrilled to invite himself to Gold Cup party
2014 420 World Championships - Singapore wins Day 2 race
Lightning strikes cut short CFJ Nationals
Etchells Invitational Cup - Girls on top in Cowes
National Sailing Hall of Fame reveals inductees
J/111 North American Championship - Wind Czar victorious
Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race sets off August 10th
PWA Fuerteventura Grand Slam - Antoine Albeau victorious on day 5
Snipe Western Hemisphere and Orient Championship headed for San Diego
WPA Championships - Kids race divisions offered
New Clever Pig launched by US Sailing
America's Cup: Group agrees to co-operate in London Meeting
Copa del Rey Mapfre - Build-up reveals some remarkable enthusiasm
Marblehead NOOD Regatta - Images by Leighton O'Connor
America's Cup: Two AC72 skippers discuss Foiling Moths and the Cup
RS Feva World Championship - Brilliant sailing on day 2
America's Cup: Alameda makes overtures on Venue hosting for San Fran *Feature
Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Race Week 2014 - Relishing a challenge   
Edgartown Race Weekend - BBBR and Round-the-Island Race winners named   
Etchells Invitational Cup - Aussies take early lead in Cowes   
PWA Fuerteventura Grand Slam - Antoine Albeau strikes back on day 4   
Aquece Rio – International Sailing Regatta - All set for test event   
ISAF World Sailing Rankings for 28 July 2014   
29er World Championship - All set in Kingston   
ORC World Championship - Third Course area opens for huge fleet   
Day one of the Allen RS Feva World Championships   
Anna Tunnicliffe: Final two days of the 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games   
Joachim Aschenbrenner takes gold at ISAF Youth Match Race Worlds 2014   
Maxi Soh scores double wins in CMRC Summer Doubleheader   
29er World Championship opening ceremonies in Confederation Park   
PWA Fuerteventura Grand Slam - Action resumes on day 3   
Vic-Maui Yacht Race - Polishing the silverware   
Land Rover Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race Start 2014 VIDEO   
Laser Radial Men’s World Championship 2014- Final day   
2014 Pacific Cup - Scarlet Runner wins   
Gladwell's Line: America's Cup - Joint Statement is a curious note *Feature   
ISAF Youth Match Racing World Champ - Top four battle it out for final   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT