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Hull filling with water only while underway.

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  • Hull filling with water only while underway.

    I posted about this last year and i am still having an issue. My 2007 Chaparral 256ssi is getting a lot of water in the hull while underway. I noticed this last year because i saw the bilge outlet running all of the time. The boat has been in storage in NY since October. I just got here to Fla with it last week and noticed that the auto pump was not working. I wasnt too concerned and figured i would order a new pump at some point. The boat is right in the back yard at a dock and i just figured i could go switch it on manually as necessary.
    One day last week i went to lunch with some friends on the boat. We were underway for about an hour and the boat started running extremely rough. I opened the engine hatch and found that there was about a foot of water in the hull. I shut the boat off and turned the bilge pump on manually. It is an 1100 GPH pump and took about 10 minutes to pump out. So that would mean there was approximately 180 gallons of water (assuming the pump was pumping at what is rated for. I doubt is was that much water but it was a lot. The boat started running badly because the belt and pullies were slinging water up all over the coils, ignition wires and plugs.
    Once the water was out and i managed to get the engine started, i looked all over to see if one of the cooling hoses had come off or ruptured. (Last summer i blew the engine and replaced the entire long block) There was no indication that water was leaking any place.
    I brought the boat back to the dock and it sat over night. We had a very light rain over night so there was a very little bit of water in the hull but nothing at all significant. I started the engine and let it run at about 1200 rpm for about 15 minutes and still no water. I am on the intracoastal and never ran the boat over 1500-1600 rpms since it is all a slow speed minimum wake zone. Now i have no clue. When i say i looked for water coming off the engine, i am able to get a pretty good look of the entire engine. If any of the hoses were leaking, I would be able to see water dripping off of the bottom of the engine. When the hull has no water, i can see all around the oil pan from every angle.
    I took the boat out today and left the pump on. Everything was fine. On my way back i would shut the pump off for 10 minutes or so and then turn it back on. It would run for about 1-2 minutes and stop pumping water. I would shut it off and 10 minutes later i would do the same thing. Again, it would run for a minute or two and stop. I shut it off about 15 minutes before we got back to the dock and there was about 10-12 inches of water when i opened the hatch at the dock.
    I was wondering if it might be a cooling line that is only leaking when the thermostat is open. The boat is running at a pretty steady 170 degrees or so according to the dash gauge. Since the boat was good and warm when i got it back, i let it run at about 1200 RPM again for another 20 minutes or so and still no water.
    With the amount of water that is coming in over such a short period, i would think that if it were from the cooling line, it would be extremely obvious where is was coming from. If it was thru the hull itself, it should be taking on water when at the dock. The blower vents are up pretty high and are in the back so i dont think it is water spray from there.
    Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

    I also have another post about the engine running a little rough. Please take a look at that as well.

  • #2
    Did the boat leak like a sieve before the motor and outdrive were pulled?
    Please, no PM's (Private Messages) regarding boat/engine problems.
    That is what the forums are for.
    Only forum/moderator issues will be answered in PM's.


    • #3
      No. I dont know that the leak is any worse than it has ever been. Im just noticing how bad it is since the automatic switch on the pump is not working. When i did the motor and outdrive i replaced the bellows and all of the seals.


      • #4
        So fire up the motor and put your butt in the bilge and look for the leak
        Cheesehead boating the Gulf Coast of FLA 27.51° N, 82.53° W

        1988 Cruisers Rogue 2420 -VP 290 DP now powered by custom 468 - https://forums.iboats.com/forum/owner...988-rogue-2420

        Past Boats
        1970 Wooster Hellion - Merc 9.8
        2002 SeaRay 190BR - 5.0 - A1G2 - "Cheeseheads in Paradise"
        1984 Avanti 170DLI -3.0 stringer- "Ship Happens"

        What’s behind you doesn’t matter.Enzo Ferrari


        • #5
          My first guess would be a leak in the cooling system such as a cut or tear in a hose somewhere, maybe only manifesting itself at higher rpm`s(pressure).

          Secondly check the thru hulls and the hoses attached to them. Make sure there are no leaks, especially if they are ever at or below the water line. Then pull the boat and give the entire bottom of the hull an inspection looking or obvious holes or cracks. Also check the transom seal.
          Summer Fling-II
          2008 Chaparral Sunesta 264
          Summer Fling
          2003 Chaparral Sunesta 243


          • #6

            When i bought this boat, the previous owner left 10 - 15 dock lines in the forward under seat compartment. I never had any cause to remove them. This morning thought maybe it was something in the front of the boat. I noticed a drain, just above the water line in the front of the boat. I was thinking it was for the anchor locker. So i ran a hose into the anchor locker and nothing was running out. Then i noticed a small drain on the other side of the boat that had the water from the anchor locker running out of it. I opened the bow seat on the starboard side and saw a small panel with two screws. I removed the panel and could see the other side of the drain. But there was a hose connected that looked like it ran down the center of the hull. I could not see exactly where it went. I tried to put my arm down and follow it along and found it was disconnected. It felt as if it was connected because it was caught on something. I pulled it up and thought this must be it for sure. But what does it connect to?
            With that i reallized that the compartment in the front with all of the dock lines was finished as opposed to carpeted. DUH....I took all of the dock lines out and sure enough there was a drain to nowhere. I was able to reconnect the hose and took it for a run. Dry as a bone.
            The way the hose was sitting, it was running from the thru hull fitting DOWN into the very bottom of the hull. This explains why when i would move slow 5-6 MPH it was filling up with water but not so much moving quickly (more bow rise) and not at all when standing still.
            So thanks for all of the suggestions and help. Im sure everyone was awake all night thinking a out this. LOL


            • #7
              Thanks for the update and glad you found the cause. Now fix that bilge pump!
              Please, no PM's (Private Messages) regarding boat/engine problems.
              That is what the forums are for.
              Only forum/moderator issues will be answered in PM's.


              • #8
                Sign up today
                Nice catch! Seems like its always the last place you look....!

                If ya can't fix it with a hammer,ya got yourself an electrical problem.