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How to Protect Your Engine from Salt Water

How to Protect Your Engine from Salt Water

One of the biggest problems boats and boat engines have to deal with is the abrasive nature of salt water. They are in constant contact with ocean water and, over time, it can result in some serious corrosion damage.

However, there are ways to prevent that from happening, or at least minimizing this damage to ensure that your boat engine lasts you for a very long time. One of the first things you need to do if you are a boat owner is to find a good boat repair facility near you. In San Diego, ship repair and ship maintenance are best found at Propulsion Controls Engineering or PCE for short. Here are things you can do by yourself to protect your boat from the salt water.

Your Engine Bay and the Bilge Area Need to Be Clean

Not only should these parts of your boat be clean, it is critical to keep them dry as well. A large majority of boats have some water in their bilge area, and some boat owners even think that this is a good thing and that it is supposed to be like this.

In reality, this water is slowly but continuously doing damage to your boat’s hull and, if found in the engine bay, your engine as well. There are many places a leak can come from, including your hull, various hoses, or any part of your raw water cooling system. Take the time to locate the leak and you can reduce the risk to your engine by a significant margin.

Test the Bilge Switch

The bilge switch is an important piece of equipment, and a faulty one can not only let water into your boat and cause corrosion damage, it can also lead to sinking. You want this switch to be fully functional, so make the effort to check it before you head out to sea every time.

Flush Your Engine with Fresh Water Frequently

One of the best ways to prevent salt water from eating through your engine and other boat parts is to wash the salt water off as often as possible. Salt water evaporates, leaving a salt residue, as well as other debris which can impact your engine’s performance and damage the engine components.

Flushing uses fresh water to remove all the salt and debris in order to protect the engine. To be sure that the flush is successful, it needs to be at least five minutes long and reach every part of the engine. Flushing is especially important for boats which are stored out of the water because the combination of salt water and air promotes corrosion.

Fix All Problems Early On

If you locate a minor problem, don’t disregard it thinking you have time to fix it whenever. In reality, the sooner you fix a problem, the more likely you are to avoid major problems in the future. So, if you see a hose which is dripping salt water slightly into your engine bay, do not think that it is not a big deal, because the effects of salt water compound and over time, even such a small leak can cause critical damage to an engine component and cost you a lot of money.

Ask for a Professional’s Help

If you are not overly versed in the mechanical aspect of boat ownership, you may want some help from professional boat mechanics. If you are in San Diego, visit PCE, a company with over forty years of experience and numerous contracts by the US Navy. Contact PCE to learn more.

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