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Old 08-08-2017, 08:20 AM   #1
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Storing impellers

What is the best way to store spare or even new impellers? Can't imagine that throwing them in a Tupperware container and putting it in the engine room is the best way to keep them long term. Spray them with something and put in a ziplock bag? I have the previous owners collection of 5 for the RW pumps on my twin diesels and two new ones still in plastic that I purchased. Seems like 4-5 too many to me?
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Old 08-08-2017, 09:05 AM   #2
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Maybe we have some chemists here that could chime in, but I think these things age even when not in use. I don't like putting in impellers that are of unknown age. Nothing wrong with keeping a few as spares, but if I am going to put one in as a maintenance step, I buy a new one.

I think the tupperware is a good idea, and keep impeller in a box to keep plasticizers from getting to it. I think engine rooms have some ozone which has some effect too, maybe store them elsewhere.
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Old 08-08-2017, 10:01 AM   #3
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I have a single engine. Every two seasons I install the "spare" that I bought new then buy a new one and keep as a spare in its original packaging in the engine room.
I don't keep old impellers once they are removed. They get tossed.
I have never had a problem with this practice in 25+ years of boating.
YMMV
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Old 08-08-2017, 10:02 AM   #4
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I took a class at Mack Boring diesel repair and the suggestion was to store them in a container of cheap olive oil.
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Old 08-08-2017, 10:59 AM   #5
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Storing them is not an issue but changing them is. Lots of owners never change them until they fail, then they've created an "event" when all they had to do was change them...
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Old 08-08-2017, 11:53 AM   #6
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"I have a single engine. Every two seasons I install the "spare" that I bought new then buy a new one and keep as a spare in its original packaging in the engine room."

A good procedure for any spare , alt , starter , even running light bulbs.

Install it and you know it fits , and works.
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Old 08-08-2017, 08:38 PM   #7
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Rubber products have solvents that evaporate out in time to leave the base material harder and less flexible. Sealing impellers in a vacuum extends their life when sitting. But who knows how long they sat on some suppliers shelf?
My last set of impellers (2 mains, 2 generators) lasted 5 years. That means my spares were 5 years old when I put them in.
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Old 08-08-2017, 09:36 PM   #8
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I do what jleonard does. Seems to work.
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Old 08-09-2017, 05:03 AM   #9
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I wonder if a Spray w 303 protectant before the zip loc bag would help...I can't see where it would hurt???
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Old 08-09-2017, 06:02 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ski in NC View Post
Maybe we have some chemists here that could chime in, but I think these things age even when not in use. I don't like putting in impellers that are of unknown age. Nothing wrong with keeping a few as spares, but if I am going to put one in as a maintenance step, I buy a new one.
This.

When we bought our boat, we had to move her from Florida to the upper Chesapeake. I replaced the impellers with some spares that looked fine to my inexperienced eyes. After we arrived I decided to change out some weeping engine hoses and found a lot of impeller pieces. Below is what the impellers looked like. What amazed me most is that the Lehmans ran 750 miles at cruising speed without overheating with a few vanes on each impeller and lots of rubber pieces clogging up the works. From now on, it's new impellers on a regular schedule.
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Old 08-09-2017, 07:27 AM   #11
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Cut and paste.....

Ideally, rubber and plastic objects should be stored in cold, dark, dry, and oxygen-free conditions. Cold, dark, dry conditions can be found in the refrigerator section of a frost-free refrigerator or in a low relative humidity cold storage room. The freezer compartment of frost-free refrigerators and frost-free deep freezers have high relative humidity and should not be used to store objects, unless they are protected by waterproof containers (Wilhelm and Brower,*1993). To reduce humidity around objects, they should be placed in sealed glass or vapour-proof plastic containers along with dry indicating silica gel that occupies about one-third of the air space in the container. The indicating silica gel will remain blue as long as the air in the container is dry. When it turns to a pink colour, it should be replaced with a fresh quantity (CCI*Technical Bulletin 10,*Silica Gel). Monitoring should be done at least once a year. Please note, however, that plastics are more brittle when they are cold. Well-padded boxes and trays, as well as careful handling, will be required...

Care of Objects Made from Rubber and Plastic - Canadian Conservation Institute (CCI) Notes 15/1 - Canada.ca
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Old 08-09-2017, 09:25 AM   #12
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I am just a moron but I store my extra impellers just the way the factory sent them, in their original box in the cabin in a drawer (semi dark and neither high or low humidity). I have used some that were stored like that after five years. So far no problems.
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Old 08-09-2017, 10:45 AM   #13
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I am just a moron but I store my extra impellers just the way the factory sent them, in their original box in the cabin in a drawer (semi dark and neither high or low humidity). I have used some that were stored like that after five years. So far no problems.
Only takes one problem to make you regret it. I would never use a five year old impeller. We rotate ours out of circulation.

We do keep all that we purchase dated and have a regular schedule for replacement of the one in use and of the backup.

I consider two years the absolute maximum storage. Keep in mind that if you store it two years then use it two you're already using a four year old impeller. A cheaply made, soft, and somewhat flimsy little item in a very expensive hard metal piece of equipment.
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Old 08-09-2017, 10:59 AM   #14
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As explained to me, how do you know when the impeller was manufactured, how long it was in stock at the factory, how long it was in stock as the distributor, how long it was in stock at the ultimate reseller? At one time I fooled around with old motorcycles and autos, often the only rubber part we could locate was over ten years old. We used it. It the part wasn't put in use before I never found it damages as long as it was stored properly, certainly having a part recently produced would be best.

I propose an expirment, go to you local store and buy an extra impeller. Keep it in the original box and put it in your sock drawer. After five years take it out and compare it to a brand new impeller.
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Old 08-09-2017, 11:21 AM   #15
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BandB

As explained to me, how do you know when the impeller was manufactured, how long it was in stock at the factory, how long it was in stock as the distributor, how long it was in stock at the ultimate reseller? At one time I fooled around with old motorcycles and autos, often the only rubber part we could locate was over ten years old. We used it. It the part wasn't put in use before I never found it damages as long as it was stored properly, certainly having a part recently produced would be best.

I propose an expirment, go to you local store and buy an extra impeller. Keep it in the original box and put it in your sock drawer. After five years take it out and compare it to a brand new impeller.
I know because I buy in dated packaging. I don't go to the "local store" to buy. You take whatever chances you wish. I won't do it. I've known of too many problems.

Now, your statements on sitting around on store shelf and other places are very appropriate. Check dates on things like cans of oil at small dealers. And, yes, oil and other fluids are dated and do lose properties. Batteries are one of the worst.

I've never been in a grocery store I couldn't find outdated items somewhere in the store. I haven't checked but I'm sure you can go into any parts or supplies store and find old items as well.
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Old 08-09-2017, 11:38 AM   #16
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As a kid... talcum powder sprinkled liberally onto rubber swim equipment such as fins and masks, then hand rubbed into and all over items as well as wet-suits etc worked wonders to stop the rubber-like materials from aging/cracking/getting-gummy.

I recall sometimes locating rubber-like items treated with talcum powder years after storage still being in good condition.

Guess the powder locked in the natural moisture/oils of the rubber products. Wonder if that powder would also help keep impellers in good, supple, rubber like condition?
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Old 08-09-2017, 11:56 AM   #17
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Appreciate everyone's response. Didn't realize it would be such a discussion! I have new ones in from a month ago and 4 new in package spares. My exec. decision for the next change is to put the oldest new ones in and buy a new set for spares. I will keep the ones taken out as the back up emergency spares. 6 impellers would seem to be more than enough but what do I know. Oh, throwing away the 5 sets of old old ones I inherited. Just not enough cost to justify keeping anything very old. These range in age from 3 years to....??? who knows...
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Old 08-09-2017, 12:15 PM   #18
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Having twins I keep 8 new impellers and 5 foe the generator. Yes I try to use an old one and replace it with a new purchased one. I ven been known to save the best looking of old ones just in case. My nemesis for impellers is plastic bags.
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Old 08-09-2017, 12:22 PM   #19
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Certainly a great idea to cycle spare parts.
And with natural rubber components a very good idea to store away from UV and heat as well as any petroleum products.


Practically speaking from my past experiences I can offer up these thoughts on typical natural rubber impellers and their close cousins.....

- impellers stored for 10 years will still perform well unless subject to heavy UV and heat
- Even some impellers left in service for 10+ years will still work well, But I am a proponent of yearly inspection and every 2nd year changes for most impellers.
- Natural rubber components subject to thermal cycling chambers will survive through much more heat and heat cycles than your boat will ever see but some failures can begin to occur at temps in the area of 10F and lower.
- Unexpectedly I did put one impeller into service that had been in use for two seasons and then stored for another 9 years. There were no issues for the balance of that season and it looked real good at the end as well.


Generally impellers with long vanes and shorter cam lifts will easily outlast impellers with very short vanes and high cam lifts.
This affect will trump any issues of storage by a large magnitude.
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Old 08-09-2017, 01:00 PM   #20
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We have had our fair share of impeller issues this season ,so much that we have system for changing a bad impeller. I don't think I have a bad pump just a series of events that caused impeller failure.
1st : I remove the cover and pull the bad impeller . Joy removes all the broken pieces from the oil cooler and hoses , my fingers are to fat . She then installs the key back in the shaft ( again my fingers to fat). Then I install new impeller and put it all back together. I'm going today to get a pair of 90 degree needle nose pliers .
I've been keeping mine in ziplock bags in a cabinet in wheelhouse.
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