(Almost) Lost My Fresh Water Pump Today - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 08-22-2009
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(Almost) Lost My Fresh Water Pump Today

Loss of the pump really isn't a big deal (except for the insane price that they want for a replacement Westerbeke pump), but there is a really good lesson that I thought that I'd pass along.

Last week, when leaving the boat, I noticed a very small puddle of liquid (about the size of a nickel) near the engine after we'd run it for a couple of hours. My engine and bilge are dry so that raised a red flag for me.

Today I was at the boat with my 12 year old nephew. I told him that I wanted to check the engine after we got away from the dock. However, after I started the engine and left the slip, I heard an "Eeeeeeee" squeal from the engine. When I throttled back, it stopped. I decided to look at the engine right then even though we were just outside the marina in restricted water.

After removing the companionway steps, I saw a VERY loose water pump belt and thought that was the problem until I saw the pulley wobbling from side to side and anti-freeze all over the engine compartment. We turned around, tied up, and I pulled the pump.

The moral is that warning signs are all around us if we pay attention. I have a 130 mile trip planned in the near future to Onancock, VA. Life would have become real interesting if the pump let go in Onancock Creek. Sometimes our greatest belssings are the things that DON'T happen to us.
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Old 08-22-2009
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Yup! Small fault left unfixed will result in big problem later. Its "Pay now or pain later". Good to hear you caught it in time before parts start flying in your engine compartment.
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Old 08-22-2009
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Quote:
Good to hear you caught it in time before parts start flying in your engine compartment
Exactly! At only 1500 RPM, it was wobbling all over the place. Maybe 1/2" off center. I had visions of shrapnel flying all over if I'd throttled up. I hated to cut the excursion with my nephew short, but it just wasn't prudent to go on. On top of the mechanical problem, a massive series of thunderstorms hit the area anout 30 minutes after we got back. Would have been a really wet sail.
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