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  1. #1
    Seaman
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    Default Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Great forum hope it works for me like it usually does. I just bough a 2002 four winns horizon 180 with the 4.3 v6. Previous owner had all paperwork showing maintenance since he bought it brand new. Test drove the boat for at least 30 mins all gauges showed no problems. Checked the oil while driving and it seemed fine no water. That was two weeks ago went out today to change the oil hooked it up to the water hose to get it warm. When I sucked it out of the dipstick tube it was grey. But on the dip stick it looks fine. I changed the oil and filter twice just to be sure where could the water be coming from? Between the two oil changes the water was running and I checked to see if water was getting in the oil pan via the dip stick and it was not so any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Chief Petty Officer Black as's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Depends what shade of grey it is and or if water is actually getting in the oil as it normally goes a milky color.

    eg: warm up some oil in a pot and add water to it giving it a vigorous stir and that's the color it goes to
    'All other things being equal, a bigger engine makes more power.'
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  3. #3
    Fleet Admiral jerryjerry05's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Profile?Serial#? Try pulling the plugs after it's set and check for water.Then loosen the manifolds and look for rust/water in the passages.
    The risers/manifols don't usually go bad after 10 years.But the gasket between the two could.You have the 2 piece manifold or 1 piece?Fresh water cooling?More info please.J
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  4. #4
    Seaman
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Engine number is om354503 yes fresh water cooling two piece I believe and just to add it starts and runs fine. Is it ok to run the water hose with the engine off ? Can I let the oil pan empty and see if water comes in ? Thanks

  5. #5
    Moderator Bondo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    yes fresh water cooling
    Ayuh,... It's got a heat exchanger, 'n radiator cap,..??
    With antifreeze in it,..??
    Any Grease is Better,..... Than No Grease at All.......

  6. #6
    Seaman
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    O Sorry misunderstood you no lake water cooled n just took spark plugs out no rust or water in cylinders Any thoughts on running water while engine not running ?

  7. #7
    Supreme Mariner bruceb58's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    What was your oil level like? Did it seem overfilled like water was increasing the level. Usually if this happpens the oil , turns into a milkshake so probably not.

    Has there been water in your bilge up to the crankcase level?

    Has your boat ever been used in salt water? Riser/maifolds have a 5 year life in salt water.
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  8. #8
    Seaman
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Well I called the previous owner. When I bought the boat he told me it had only been serviced by the dealer he bought it at lie one. Then he said it had never had water in it, now he said he forgot to put the plug in one time and it got up to the bottom of the motor lie two. He gave me the number to the mechanic that changed the oil after it got water in it, the mechanic said he changed it twice and then ran it in their tank. Said there was no water in oil so he winterized it. That was 6 months ago, could there still be water in it from then? Because when I test drove it Two weeks ago and there was no water in the oil or so I thought it looks clean on the dipstick but when I pump it out it looks grey. I changed it again tonight ran it for 5 mins then checked it by sucking some out looks alot better hope it stays that way but by listening it sounds like a bearing is going out just idling in neutral sorry for the long post i just invested 8000 in this thing and hav not even taken tha family out yet just trying to see how much more she needs thanks for all the help

  9. #9
    Seaman
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    No salt water to my knowledge I bought the boat in north Texas which is where I live

  10. #10
    Supreme Mariner bruceb58's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Water can enter the oil through the main oil seal. I would just change it a few more times and see how it goes. Make sure you bring it up to full operating temp between changes.

    I had the exact same experience.

    Also, if the water did get that high, you need to pull your starter. It may be working now but I can guarantee it won't be in the future.
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  11. #11
    Seaman
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Ok thanks, I guess your talking about the main seal on the back of the motor? Onthe crank shaft?

  12. #12
    Supreme Mariner bruceb58's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Quote Originally Posted by Dieter View Post
    Ok thanks, I guess your talking about the main seal on the back of the motor? Onthe crank shaft?
    Or front.
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  13. #13
    Seaman
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Well I do not know if I should post a new question or just keep going here let me know, but one other question is when the engine is running is sounds louder than my last boat, a 1989 four winns 5.0 omc cobra drive, it sounds like a bearing to me. I thought a pulley might have been out on the belt like the water pump or power steering but I took the belt off and all seemed fine. I did notice the engine mount nut is loose should I just tighten it up or could something be out of aligNment on the drive?

  14. #14
    Moderator Bondo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    Quote Originally Posted by Dieter View Post
    Well I do not know if I should post a new question or just keep going here let me know, but one other question is when the engine is running is sounds louder than my last boat, a 1989 four winns 5.0 omc cobra drive, it sounds like a bearing to me. I thought a pulley might have been out on the belt like the water pump or power steering but I took the belt off and all seemed fine. I did notice the engine mount nut is loose should I just tighten it up or could something be out of aligNment on the drive?
    Ayuh,.... I just reread this thread,...
    I think yer chasin' a Ghost with the water in the oil thing,...
    Run it, 'n keep an eye on it,...

    As for the new questions,...
    A rumblin' sound could be the gimbel bearing,... or the drive...
    If the motor mount is Loose,...
    I'd pull the drive, 'n hand check the gimbel bearing, 'n align the motor when tightening that mount...

    You could start the motor with the drive off,...
    No Rumble, it Ain't the motor...
    Any Grease is Better,..... Than No Grease at All.......

  15. #15
    Seaman
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    Default Re: Water in oil 4.3 mercruiser Water in oil

    That's why I like this forum thanks for all the good advice guys.

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