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Old 11-07-2014, 10:53 AM   #21
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On the other hand, if the engine or boat manufacturer though either of these was necessary they would have been installed at the factory. Just as with spare parts, it's hard to determine in advance what is likely to fail next.
Ron,

In 2002 the ABYC included a requirement for these alarms in their publication P-1 INSTALLATION OF EXHAUST SYSTEMS FOR PROPULSION AND AUXILIARY ENGINES 7/02:

"1.7.1.4 An indicator shall be provided at all helm positions to indicate loss of exhaust system cooling water supply."

Also, most marine generators that I have encountered have an exhaust elbow/mixer temperature sensor in the safety shut-down circuit that stops the generator if it loses cooling water.

I have installed the Borel alarms on all of my boats for a while now, mainly because they are simple and trouble free. They can be tested with a hair dryer or heat gun, and I have found they react very quickly to increases in temperature. The response time is however directly related to the sensor placement and how quickly the mixer elbow and exhaust hose heats up when cooling water is reduced or interrupted.

In an attempt to protect the raw water pump in the event of a clogged intake or failed drive or belt, I have installed Speedseal Life covers to enhance run-dry capabilities while the alarms are being triggered or acknowledged. They make impeller changes much easier too.
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Old 11-07-2014, 10:58 AM   #22
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It occurs to me after posting my last post that the best place for the flow sensor would be at the end of the raw water circuit, not the start. That would tell you that water was coming into the boat and leaving at the proper place.
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Old 11-07-2014, 11:01 AM   #23
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Ron,

In 2002 the ABYC included a requirement for these alarms in their publication P-1 INSTALLATION OF EXHAUST SYSTEMS FOR PROPULSION AND AUXILIARY ENGINES 7/02:

"1.7.1.4 An indicator shall be provided at all helm positions to indicate loss of exhaust system cooling water supply.".........
I did not know that and my boat was built in late 1999. Are new boats being built with these sensors? I haven't seen posts on forums mentioning these before now.
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Old 11-07-2014, 11:18 AM   #24
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It occurs to me after posting my last post that the best place for the flow sensor would be at the end of the raw water circuit, not the start. That would tell you that water was coming into the boat and leaving at the proper place.
That is an interesting idea, but how would the water flow sensor help in the event of restricted diminished flow? There might be sufficient flow to cool the exhaust at low speeds, but at higher engine speeds with reduced water flow you could still overheat the exhaust and the alarm would not sound.

On gas V-8 Mercruisers, we always installed a sensor on each bank. If one exhaust riser became clogged, you could quickly have an overheat situation because the cooling water could still exit through the other riser. Again, a condition where based upon water flow, everything would appear normal.

It's kind of like a chess game with the Devil or Murphy himself!
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Old 11-07-2014, 11:38 AM   #25
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I did not know that and my boat was built in late 1999. Are new boats being built with these sensors? I haven't seen posts on forums mentioning these before now.
I don't think so. The ABYC guidelines are not a requirement for recreational boats sold in the US. It's my understanding that compliance is optional. Here is a good overview of this subject from the Nordhavn tech forum.
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Old 11-07-2014, 03:08 PM   #26
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That is an interesting idea, but how would the water flow sensor help in the event of restricted diminished flow? There might be sufficient flow to cool the exhaust at low speeds, but at higher engine speeds with reduced water flow you could still overheat the exhaust and the alarm would not sound.
I'm not talking so much about overheating as water flow. Putting a water flow sensor at the beginning of the circuit (between the seacock and the raw water pump) would insure a flow of water to the pump but a broken hose could leave the pump filling the bilge with water without an alarm sounding. Putting the sensor at the last possible point in the circuit would insure water flow through the engine and out of the boat. Neither would detect an overheated exhaust system, you would need the heat sensor for that.

I think what holds me back from installing all these alarms is the mess of the extra wiring and all the aftermarket alarm panels (at both helms).
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Old 11-07-2014, 03:48 PM   #27
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I'm not talking so much about overheating as water flow. Putting a water flow sensor at the beginning of the circuit (between the seacock and the raw water pump) would insure a flow of water to the pump but a broken hose could leave the pump filling the bilge with water without an alarm sounding. Putting the sensor at the last possible point in the circuit would insure water flow through the engine and out of the boat. Neither would detect an overheated exhaust system, you would need the heat sensor for that.

I think what holds me back from installing all these alarms is the mess of the extra wiring and all the aftermarket alarm panels (at both helms).
That is the reason I stopped after the exhaust temp alarm. At one time I wanted to have a custom Borel alarm panel made to monitor exhaust temp for both main and generator, high bilge water and the diesel filter water sensor. I looked at the amount of additional wiring and it wound up way down on my to-do list. I can't even imagine the same job with two helms, twins or both. Yikes!

It is very easy to get carried away with these kinds of upgrades and modifications. Our recreational boats are not airliners or space shuttles and don't require redundancy or sophistication found in those more complex systems. The technology is available though, if you want it and can afford it. I have to remind myself constantly to KISS and resist the urge to chase this stuff.
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Old 11-07-2014, 04:41 PM   #28
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Depends on the builder's philosophy about quality and safety. My 1981 Hatteras came from the factory with both exhaust temperature and engine temperature alarms.
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Old 11-07-2014, 05:18 PM   #29
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Depends on the builder's philosophy about quality and safety. My 1981 Hatteras came from the factory with both exhaust temperature and engine temperature alarms.
Yep, that's where I stopped with this one. Engine temp gauge, engine temp alarm and exhaust temp alarm. That and good scan discipline of the panel when underway.
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Old 11-07-2014, 07:10 PM   #30
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Yep, that's where I stopped with this one. Engine temp gauge, engine temp alarm and exhaust temp alarm. That and good scan discipline of the panel when underway.
That last discipline being the most important.
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Old 11-07-2014, 07:15 PM   #31
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That last discipline being the most important.
When you inevitably forget to look every two minutes .... well, that's when the flow detector will save you.
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Old 11-07-2014, 07:16 PM   #32
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Yep, that's where I stopped with this one. Engine temp gauge, engine temp alarm and exhaust temp alarm. That and good scan discipline of the panel when underway.
I'll have to see if I can tie an exhaust temperature sensor to the engine temperature sensor so either will sound an alarm.
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Old 11-07-2014, 07:59 PM   #33
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Get one!
And yes, they are quite common in the better makes. The engine you save could be your own!
Especially if you have a turbo, an EGT (Exhaust Gas temperature) gauge is also highly recommended.
Think I'll pass. Engine is a non-turbo, low-revolution JD4045.
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