Looking for replacement heat exchanger

dacarter

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A couple of years ago Houston had a massive hard freeze and my boat ended up with damaged heat exchanger (end caps pushed outward bending center bolt mount inside) and cracked exhaust manifolds. I was not in the habit of winterizing and never had an issue before. It sits on a trailer at our house.

I found some nice fresh water used exhaust manifolds locally, but I can't find a replacement heat exchanger that looks like the copper unit I have. I think the engine block is ok because it had antifreeze in it.

The boat is a 2003 Larson 274 Cabrio with a 5.7 GXi DP VP

Any ideas what this is and where to find it used or new?
 

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Fun Times

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Is there another letter after your GXI-? to know your full parts diagram?

That one doesn't appear to be a Volvo stock unit to a GXI engine model as had it been stock it may had been Volvo part number
3861471 ,13-5/8 inch long shell



Have you had a chance to check the areas you can't see in the photo for any identification markings? such as the bottom or backside, etc?

Have an overall photo of the engine sitting in the boat?
 

Scott Danforth

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most likely your volvo heat exchanger is either a Moda unit or a Champ unit.
 

Scott Danforth

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looking at the pic, its an aftermarket unit.

the factory volvo units are painted / powdercoated.
 

dubs283

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Bring the current/broken heat exchanger to a local radiator repair shop. They ought to be able to repair it or find something as a suitable replacement
 

dacarter

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Thanks for all the info. I forgot to mention that I did sand all the paint off when I had the unit out of the boat. I also did take it to welders and radiator repair shops, but they said it could not be repaired. When the end caps pushed out from the freeze, it bent the brace inside where the bolt screws in. I have tried to bend it back myself, but can't get the end caps to seal up enough. I will look for markings when I pull it out again and get better pics of the damage. I would much rather fix it than replace it. It's in otherwise good shape.
 

Larson220

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That heat exchanger looks like the identical one that is in my boat. I bought it from a company called san juan engineering marine cooling systems. They were aquired by Orca marine.
I believe they have all the patterns for the san juan engineering stuff.
Try to contact them. They may be able to repair it.
 

dacarter

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Larson220,

Thanks for the info, I'll check into it.

Last week I took it to a radiator repair shop and they said they could solder the copper endcaps in place and suggested replacing the stainless end cap bolts with a brass bolts and soldering them in place as well. I will probably try that first as a low cost solution since it's an older boat and deep freezes are not common in Houston..
 

Fun Times

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Larson220,

Thanks for the info, I'll check into it.

Last week I took it to a radiator repair shop and they said they could solder the copper endcaps in place and suggested replacing the stainless end cap bolts with a brass bolts and soldering them in place as well. I will probably try that first as a low cost solution since it's an older boat and deep freezes are not common in Houston..
Would they be able to install a drain hole or two somewhere so you wouldn’t have to mess with the water hoses each year?

Your state has been receiving very cold weather spurts lately enough that full weatherization should be considered each year by all.
 

dacarter

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There is a drain plug on the right side in the picture but you can't see it since it's under the two hoses. I could also just drop a 100w bulb in the engine compartment.
 

Scott Danforth

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the removable end caps are to clean out the tubes. if you solder it, you will plug up the heat exchanger.
 

dacarter

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I've never cleaned it in the 10 years I've owned it and there was no debris in it when I removed the caps, so maybe not an issue for me.
 

Scott Danforth

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I clean mine 3-4 times a year as shells, rocks, sand, weed bits, etc. get past the raw water pump to the first chamber.
 

Donald0039

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Get a new heat exchanger at Lenco Coolers. Or MrCool. You could have internal damage in the heat exchanger. I would not bother with the old heat changer.
 

Scott06

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I've never cleaned it in the 10 years I've owned it and there was no debris in it when I removed the caps, so maybe not an issue for me.
you have to look down the tubes for clogging and scale. Obviously not the issue that brought you here but if you have cooling issues down the road ...
 
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dacarter

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Larson220, you nailed it. After looking closer at the endcaps I see "San Juan Engineering" stamped on it.

I contacted Orca and they said a new unit is $1325! I know there are some other options around $600, but I'm going with the solder repair. I got it back today, all sealed up and pressure tested. I had to buy some brass bolts off Amazon so the solder would stick. They have been pressure tested, both chambers, so I know there are no cracks or leaks internal where the water will mix.

Here's the way I am looking at it....

- The boat is 20 years old (Larson 274 Cabrio) with some cosmetic damage from a tree falling on it that makes it less valuable, so I'm trying to get it going again on a budget.
- If there is ever an overheating problem, it's easy to hook up a hose, pull off one hose and check the flow though it.
- If it ever does need to be cleaned, the solder can easily be removed with a map or propane torch.
- Based on past experience, I don't expect any issues with it.
- Most of the other options would require different size hose and different hose routing.
- I live in Houston, so not many freezing concerns as up north

Price was only $150 for the repair.

I'll post an update here if there are issues, or it works well.
 

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Larson220

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Larson220, you nailed it. After looking closer at the endcaps I see "San Juan Engineering" stamped on it.

I contacted Orca and they said a new unit is $1325! I know there are some other options around $600, but I'm going with the solder repair. I got it back today, all sealed up and pressure tested. I had to buy some brass bolts off Amazon so the solder would stick. They have been pressure tested, both chambers, so I know there are no cracks or leaks internal where the water will mix.

Here's the way I am looking at it....

- The boat is 20 years old (Larson 274 Cabrio) with some cosmetic damage from a tree falling on it that makes it less valuable, so I'm trying to get it going again on a budget.
- If there is ever an overheating problem, it's easy to hook up a hose, pull off one hose and check the flow though it.
- If it ever does need to be cleaned, the solder can easily be removed with a map or propane torch.
- Based on past experience, I don't expect any issues with it.
- Most of the other options would require different size hose and different hose routing.
- I live in Houston, so not many freezing concerns as up north

Price was only $150 for the repair.

I'll post an update here if there are issues, or it works well.
Glad you were able to get it fixed.
It should be fine. Sure beats the price of a new one.
Thank you for the tips.
 
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