Yanmar 3gm30f rebuild...It all boils down to customer service but where do we go? - SailNet Community

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Diesel This is a forum dedicated to diesel engines and their applicable accessories.


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Old 11-12-2010
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Unhappy Yanmar 3gm30f rebuild...It all boils down to customer service but where do we go?

We left our boat for a total refit with a boatyard who has a good reputation for work and is a Yanmar dealer. One of the tasks to be completed was a rebuild of our 3 cylinder Yanmar. It was getting hard to start on cold mornings and was showing low compression. We left our Cabo Rico 34 with the yard in November of 2009 for months and tens of thousands dollars of work. Our engine was pulled and shipped to Yanmar Engine experts on the East coast who provide a 1 year or 1000 hours warranty. The rebuilt engine was returned to the boatyard and was installed along with new fuel lines, rebuilt transmission and exhaust.

Our boat was completed around mid summer and we started to use her in August, looking forward to getting lots of time aboard for the cooler fall weather. We hoped to have 50 hours on the engine before putting up for the winter. We found about three weekends ago that there was harder starting on cold mornings and the engine did not seem to run on all cylinders at first then ran fine. We noticed white smoke at that initial start up. We reported to the boatyard and they, upon examination, agreed with our findings.

Now we are in the investigation stage of this dilemma. The yard has determined that there is nothing wrong with fuel. They examined the high pressure pump assembly. Nothing wrong there. The boatyard has found that there is an issue with the distance pistons travel within the cylinders. There is concern that there is water incursion. There is talk that the next move is to pull the engine again??? The question comes up, who takes financial responsibility of this???

The organization who rebuilt the engine seems to find fault with the installation and the installers point to the re-builders. We are also feeling like they are looking at us with fault by asking us questions if we used any additives to our engine. We have not done anything other than run it 35 hours under normal use and feel that the rebuild should have given longer service.

Has anyone had to resolve a situation like this? We want to maintain good relations with these suppliers of services and materials. We do not feel that the supposed "totally new inside" engine is behaving like a new engine. We have paid our bills and do not know what is the recourse for a situation like this.
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Old 11-12-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb3pwc View Post

The boatyard has found that there is an issue with the distance pistons travel within the cylinders. There is concern that there is water incursion. There is talk that the next move is to pull the engine again??? The question comes up, who takes financial responsibility of this???

:
If the pistons don't come up to where they're supposed to, it may be a sign of hydrolock and bent piston rods. If it was hard starting and you cranked and cranked it without it firing you may have done the damage. If a diesel doesn't start after one or two cranks you should shut the water intake and reopen it only after it fires. Did you do this? I don't want to freak you out but if it was hydrolocked you may have major damage.
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Old 11-12-2010
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Thanks for the feedback

Thanks, Rick I. Yes we are familiar with hydrolock. Though the engine was slower to start, it did not require more than 5 to 6 seconds of starter run rather than immediate firing up. Most would have not called it slow but it was slower than it had been. My husband understands that issue and would close the valve to prevent that issue so we do not think it was "user error".

Our concern is that with neither party who worked on the engine, stepping up to say, "the customer paid to have the engine run, and it has not met that criteria, what is the plan of action", it feels like we are out in the cold, so to speak. Maybe up the creek without a diesel....
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Old 11-12-2010
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I know in the auto repair world there is an office for complaints. I have had shops in 2 different states. I get customers with stories like yours, and the first thing I do is give them the number. I don't know how many times I have been thanked.

I would think, because it is a motor that your state has an office too. Go to any shop, and posted on the wall will be the number, or google it. The BBB is a joke. People pay to be on their list, and they can be a bad shop.

Never point your finger at a shop. I have worked at many over the years. It just gets the cold shoulder reaction from the owner. Ask good questions, and you will be able to find your way most times.

If you get the cold shoulder then the state may step in? If you have no state agency a letter written from a lawyer seems to motivate people to work with you. You sound fairly knowledgable about your motor, so your fault seems less likely. Mechanics make errors just like paper pushers, doctors, or anyone else. Like any other job. There are people who are greedy, not capable, and just down right dirty rotten scoundrels. BEST WISHES in finding a positive in finding the solution.......i2f
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Old 11-12-2010
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Thanks for that information. I will look for further details for this type of office or body that oversees ethical business practices regarding engines and service. Does it also work for the marine industry? How would I handle the fact that the boat yard is one state, the engine was rebuilt in another state and I live in a third state?

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Old 11-12-2010
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In Ca., or Fl. it wouldn't matter where you live. I would start with the rebuild state. Okay I google Pa. auto repair, and got this link.

http://www.attorneygeneral.gov/uploa...s/bcp_book.pdf

Try the states that concern you. As you can auto repair is first on the list, and a motor is a motor no matter what it goes into. So once you find a number you can call, ask questions, and get information.....BEST WISHES......i2f
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Old 11-13-2010
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Sorry to hear about your continuing woes. Did the boatyard select the rebuilder, or did you? Did you write the check directly to the rebuilder, or to the yard?

Not sure if these guys could help you, Marine Trades Association of Maryland but maybe a place to start? Otherwise there's always the state attorney general's office, but by that time you're probably no longer going to be able to maintain good relations. Sigh.
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Old 11-13-2010
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Ooh, another thought - isn't Borg Warner (somewhere in NJ, I think) the company responsible for all the Yanmar dealers in this area? Can you tell them that one of their dealers isn't doing a good job backing the product?
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Old 11-13-2010
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Ooh, another thought - isn't Borg Warner (somewhere in NJ, I think) the company responsible for all the Yanmar dealers in this area? Can you tell them that one of their dealers isn't doing a good job backing the product?
I think you mean Mack Boring.
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Old 11-13-2010
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Sorry to hear of your problems kb3pwc. It must be very frustrating. You really to find out what the problem is. Without knowing that, its difficult to know who might be responsible. Note that Yanmars can be a bit hard to start once the weather gets cold because there is no glow plug, so that alone wouldn't worry me. The white smoke is another issue, and I am baffled by the "piston movement" comment. I hope this works out for you.
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