I sold my old boat (1998 Sea Ray 230) in April. The boat had been winterized every year and was also dry (racked) stored for the 3 years I had it.
The new owner told me that in late May, they experienced an engine fire. The mechanic says it was caused by a bad wiring harness. He also says the block was cracked in 5 places. He said the cracked block was the result on the cold temperatures of dry racked storage.
I find this hard to believe because a) the boat was winterized, b) it's in Charlotte, North Carolina where is does not get that cold, c) I've been in the storage area during the winter and it's warmer in there than outside, d) there were no other signs like oil leak or water in the oil, prior to the fire e) the boat was test run at full throttle for several minutes and it ran smooth as silk at 50+ MPH.
The new owner is great and they are not blaming me for the problems. I'd just like to understand where this mechanic is coming from. What do you all think?
I'd like to understand where he is coming from also. I have no experience with dry(racked) storage, but I assume that the winterization process is the same in NC as it is in IL, so if the boat was "properly" winterized, then the cold should have nothing to do with it. We winterize our boats to protect them from the cold.
FV 270"The Wetter the Better"
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My experince has been that if the boat was test run for several minutes, the block couldn't have been cracked at that time. And usually a cracked block from improper winterizing causes emulsified oil in the pan and valley.
On a previous boat, I had a cracked block between one of the cylinders and a water passage. After about 10 minutes running, the crack opened up and heated the exaust passages, burning the rubber boot and causing extensive steam in the engine compartment.
I would question the mechanic on this one - a second opinion!
Like the other's have said, there are obvious signs of a cracked block. There is no way that you sea trialed the boat with a cracked block and no-one noticed. It would have been doing one or more of the following : pouring water or antifreeze(if fwc) into the bilge, running like crap and not achieving wot rpm's, over-heating, filling up the oil pan with water and turning the oil "milky".
I think the mechanic working on it either has no clue, or is trying to pursue some kind of agenda for someone.
After reading the other replies, something comes to mind, after being involved in firefighting myself. The high temps that can come from a engine fire, how it was put out, could have been a source of damage. Cast metals don't tolerate rapid temp changes very well.
50mph with a cracked block? Boy, are they trippin' or what! 5 minures to engine ceisure, Max! And that's being nice by a whole 3 minutes. Water & oil do not mix. At least that's what my Mom used to tell me.
Seriously, I made a living for years working on Mercury outboards and
I/O inline 4's, 6's, and V8's. There is no mystery about preventing a
cracked block. You drain the water etc and it can't freeze and crack
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