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Old 12-22-2014, 10:33 AM   #21
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Thanks for all the input. I will definitely institute a regime of exercising the seacocks on a regular basis.


The haul out will happen anyway as I am having the hull surveyed. I'm paying for the haul and launch and the seller is paying for the lay days while the repair is being completed. I am going to have all the seacocks checked as part of the survey so any others that don't function will be repaired at the same time.
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Old 12-22-2014, 10:53 AM   #22
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We've been through this several times and the actual answer to this is to close all seacocks whenever you're engine is'nt running and you don't want your boat to sink.
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Old 12-22-2014, 10:56 AM   #23
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Dan, yes, all of mine are now closed in prep for an extended vacation. One word of caution--when I do that I hang red/black "DO NOT USE" tags on the engine and generator start switches as a reminder to me that they're closed.

Someone above mentioned adding a grease fitting in place of the drain nut. I did that a couple of years ago and keep a grease gun in the engine room. About once a year (usually in the spring when I'm doing my spring maintenance) I'll give them a shot of grease and work them a few times.
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Old 12-22-2014, 11:32 AM   #24
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I don't close the seacock for the automatic bilge pump. I don't open the seacock for the blackwater tank.
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Old 12-22-2014, 11:41 AM   #25
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I like the signs idea. Maybe an explanation on the sign as to the location of the respective seacocks would be in order if someone unfamiliar with the boat needed to move it.
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Old 12-22-2014, 04:06 PM   #26
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Or just keep your seacocks and hoses in top condition, only have a minimum of them and keep strainers and pumps so near the waterline a leak is a trickle and not a flood.

Then even the wimpiest of bilge pumps will keep up...but have 3-4 robust ones and sleep well..whether your seacocks are left open or closed.
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Old 12-22-2014, 04:53 PM   #27
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Dan, they're pretty standard tags. I couldn't find one to post on here, but here's a link to the type I use on Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/Accuform-Signs...ds=danger+tags

When I close the seacocks, the first thing I do is hang the tags on the engine start switches on the helm, and on the generator start switch on the power panel.

Having them in the engine room wouldn't do any good because if someone didn't know the seacocks were closed they wouldn't likely go to the engine room before starting the engines or genny.

I put a zip tie through the hole and just hang 'em on the start switches.
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Old 12-22-2014, 06:34 PM   #28
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Nice Mike. Thanks for the link. I think I would follow up with naming the closed seacock on the tag. That way there would be no confusion if you only had one closed for service and it somehow got knocked off the switch.
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Old 12-22-2014, 06:44 PM   #29
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Good topic and it makes me realize I should start closing them all when leaving the boat for more than one week (which I never did in all my previous boats with no issue). I have 8 in total (bummer...)
* 2 for main engine, and 1 for genset
* 1 for A/C, and 1 for sewage tank overboard (Purasan system)
* 3 for my heads
I think that's it...
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Old 12-22-2014, 06:48 PM   #30
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I leave mine open but exercise it every trip. My logic is even with a check list "stuff happens". I'd rather not forget to turn it on and risk engine damage or somebody else damage it if the need to move it in my absence. As Tim said earlier having insurance is perhaps how I rationalize it. That and adequate bilge pump capacity.
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Old 12-22-2014, 07:39 PM   #31
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Had 5 seacocks; now have 2. One for water in and one for waste out. Waste will stay closed unless used. Water in will stay open but exercised every time I check the oil (daily when cruising). Both seacocks and all associated plumbing are new except the strainer. As others have said, bilge pumps capacity far in excess of seacock flow and good insurance.

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Old 12-22-2014, 09:03 PM   #32
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Leave mine open all the time. Only close for maintenance. They are stroked every month or so. Hoses are in good shape, and good hoses don't just fail out of the blue. All are accessible for viewing, no hoses carrying sea water run in hidden areas.
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Old 12-22-2014, 09:25 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ski in NC View Post
... good hoses don't just fail out of the blue. All are accessible for viewing, no hoses carrying sea water run in hidden areas.
My style of safe operations.
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Old 12-22-2014, 09:44 PM   #34
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We have 3 thru hulls w/seacocks; one per engine/strainer, & one for the head intake. Close them all when leaving boat, open during pre-start check. Solves exercise problem as well.
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Old 12-22-2014, 10:59 PM   #35
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Like the look of Bligh`s avatar? Leave`em open.
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Old 12-23-2014, 12:02 AM   #36
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Seems to be a west coast/PNW/Aussie thing to close them. Here on the east coast it seems quite uncommon to close sea cocks.
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Old 12-23-2014, 12:15 AM   #37
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Don't know about the PNW thing. Everyone I know in our marina (who I've asked) with either a power or sailboat leaves them open all the time. A lot of this has to do with the ease of getting to them.
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Old 12-23-2014, 03:58 AM   #38
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I leave mine open, except for when I'm cleaning filters. But during refit all were serviced, some replaced, and all were fitted with new hoses and good quality double clamps so I have confidence in the integrity of the systems. I filled in 12 holes in the bottom during refit, some from when the PO used to have seawater heads, some from defunct transducers etc.

I haven't been doing monthly operation of them but that is a good idea. I'm on the boat every other day, and check the bilge pump cycle counter each time I board.
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Old 12-23-2014, 07:24 AM   #39
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With slight bit of work a sea cock can be connected to a remote handle.

Tags dont work well, but hanging the engine or noisemaker start key on the valve handle works every time.

WE used to have to do it for a remote shaft lock .

Leaving the sea cocks open simply requires replacing hoses on a PM sked..
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Old 12-23-2014, 07:36 AM   #40
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Or just keep your seacocks and hoses in top condition, only have a minimum of them and keep strainers and pumps so near the waterline a leak is a trickle and not a flood.

Then even the wimpiest of bilge pumps will keep up...but have 3-4 robust ones and sleep well..whether your seacocks are left open or closed.
Yup! Boating is enough work without being paranoid.
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