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post #1 of 12 Old 11-03-2010 Thread Starter
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Flushing a sea water cooled Diesel

I have a Yanmar 3GM. What the is best material to use to try to flush the sea water cooling system? Engine is direct sea water cooled. I will hook up a hose to the cooling water inlet (by pass inlet sea ****). The hose will be connected to a bucket I will keep filled with the flushing solution. Will a mix of 50% vinegar work or is Salt Away good? I have heard acid is good but would prefer not to use.
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post #2 of 12 Old 11-03-2010
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Originally Posted by casey1999 View Post
I have a Yanmar 3GM. What the is best material to use to try to flush the sea water cooling system? Engine is direct sea water cooled. I will hook up a hose to the cooling water inlet (by pass inlet sea ****). The hose will be connected to a bucket I will keep filled with the flushing solution. Will a mix of 50% vinegar work or is Salt Away good? I have heard acid is good but would prefer not to use.
1- Get an acid proof or resistant pump even a $6.00 drill pump works

2- Get some Rydlyme!

3- Remove the t-stat and re-assemble the housing

4- Disconnect the exhaust water injection hose at the injection elbow

5- Add a hose extension to this hose to feed it back into a 5 gal bucket

6- Remove impeller and put cover plate back on.

7- Stick the RW pumps intake hose into the mix of Rydlyme and water in the 5 gal bucket and flip on the circulating pump.

7- CIRCULATE the Rydlyme from the bucket through the engine then back into the bucket per time frame and instructions.

8- By removing the t water injection hose from the exhaust elbow you will not fill your waterlift muffler and engine block as the liquid will be flowing back into the 5 gallon bucket not into your cylinders.

9- Run fresh water through the block mixed with a little baking soda to neutralize it

10- Re-install new impeller & new t-stat and re-connect the water injection hose.

11- Run engine hard for about an hour under load to build back the "good rust" and oxide layer inside the engines passages.

12- You're done.

This is the same procedure except on a FWC engine where I removed the HX and used the inlet/outlet for circulation of the Rydlyme.


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Last edited by Maine Sail; 11-03-2010 at 01:47 PM.
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post #3 of 12 Old 11-03-2010 Thread Starter
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Wow that engine looks good. I will go with the Ryd Lyme and your method.
Regards, Casey
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post #4 of 12 Old 11-03-2010
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Wow that engine looks good. I will go with the Ryd Lyme and your method.
Regards, Casey
Casey,

We use essentially the same methodology as Main Sail. However, the pump I use is an inexpensive Rule 360 GPH submersible bilge pump from West Marine (or Defender). At WM, mine cost $29.00 usually but on sale was $19.00. (I power this with jumpers to the ship's house batteries.)

RydLyme is effective but very costly and you might find that Salt-Away would also be quite effective at somewhat lesser cost. Despite the foregoing, I have also used RydLym and was very satisfied with the results at a 50/50 mix. You can judge the amount of water you need to recirculate through your engine by filling a bucket with a measured amount of fresh water only and discharging the return line into an adjoining empty bucket. Once water begins to issue from the return line, stop and measure the amount of water that has been pulled from your input bucket. You only need enough water to fill the engine and cover the submersible bilge pump (if you use one) or the intake hose-end of an alternate pump such as that used by Main Sail. If you do choose to use RydLyme, use a 50/50 mix. If you choose to use Salt-Away the mix ratio is 2-3 Ounces of Salt-Away per Gallon of Fresh Water. I found that recirculating the mix for two hours was quite enough to clean out our system. (Salt-Away will actually work with salt-water as well as fresh and couple of squirts into your raw-water filter bowl from time to time will help keep your cooling system clear.)

FWIW we also keep squeeze bottles with a thin mix of Salt-Away and water in our heads and ask users to put a squirt of that into the bowl and give a few extra pumps to get it into the wast lines once the bowl has been emptied and flushed. With this the toilets and waste-lines have remained clear, odor and problem free since we began the process and the seals and joker valves seem to last quite a long time although we do service the toilets and pumps anually as a matter of course.

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post #5 of 12 Old 11-03-2010
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We use Salt Away on the tender and jet ski motors with great results. It's economical, fast, and does a good job of removing the salt.

Capt. Douglas Abbott
USCG/MCA IV/C.I./M.I. 500-ton Oceans
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Salt Away is great for salt but has limited use for any sort of rust or corrosion blockagaes inside the passages. Rydlyme wil clean out clogs and corrosion leaving you with a clean engine that transfers heat to the water very well.

I cleaned an engine where the #1 cylinder was getting very hot due to a what I hoped was just a blocked passage. 30 minutes of Rydlyme and it ran at the exact same temp as the rest of the engine. It may be expensive but it really works quite well.

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post #7 of 12 Old 11-04-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by casey1999 View Post
I have heard acid is good but would prefer not to use.
The active ingredient in any of the commerical products is acid. The main advantage is that they have adjusted the strength to be effective, but won't damage the engine internals. The reason for the baking soda flush at the end is to neutralize any remaining acid. Oxalic acid from the hardware store works well and a $5 box will make up a couple of gallons of solution.
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Re: Flushing a sea water cooled Diesel

I'm trying to take in the options here and looking at Salt Away, it seems intended for a one time flush through the system as opposed to a pump driven cycling like MaineSail outlines above.

This is obviously attractive because it's easier to dump a solution in while doing my usual winter routine rather than buying and setting up a pump etc.

Am I understanding this right? Will Salt Away work very well if I just do a one-way flush through? Or is it significantly better to do follow MaineSail's routine with a pump and bucket?

When I was working on my raw water pump I saw significant build up in the pump outlet hose, so I'd like to do something this year. But time is a constraint as always.
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post #9 of 12 Old 10-21-2015
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Re: Flushing a sea water cooled Diesel

Looking to improve my education....
Why and under what circumstances one would need to flush the engine as such?
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Re: Flushing a sea water cooled Diesel

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Originally Posted by SVTatia View Post
Looking to improve my education....
Why and under what circumstances one would need to flush the engine as such?
A raw water cooled engine has sea (or lake if that is where you are) run through the engine to cool it. It will cause the inside of the engine corrode, not really a problem in itself as the engines are designed to do this, but the cooling passages can get clogged with rust and with small sea creatures and other gunk that gets sucked in. So Ridlyme helps to break up the rust (tends to come off in flakes) and allows it to get flushed, also dissolves salt deposits, and any creatures living in there. Something you can do annually to make sure the engine runs cool, or if you have problems overheating you can try to fix the issue with the acid. "fresh water" cooled engines have a closed cooling circuit so it has coolant like a car does running through the engine, but the "radiator" is a tube with tubes running inside it that have sea water running in the other tubes to cool the coolant and carry the heat away. This will also clog up and need periodic treatment to maintain cooling efficiency.
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