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Jeff G.
Jeff G., Marine Mechanic
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 4719
Experience:  42 years experience, Certified Master Technician, All Major Outboards, Sterndrives, Hi-Performance
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I have water coming in my boat and cant find out where it is

Customer Question

I have water coming in my boat and cant find out where it is coming from.
It is not in the bilge area but between the floor and the bottom hull. can you help?
chick mathis
1996 chaparral 18.3
3.0 mercursier ***@******.***
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Boat
Expert:  Jeff G. replied 1 year ago.
Welcome,this question may need more than a single answer. Please post back with additional questions on this at any time.
With the boat on the trailer and using a flushing devise, start and run the engine. If no water the water intake hoses are OK.
If any of the bellows, the rubber parts from the outdrive are leaking you will see water leaking into the bilge under the engine.
If no water from under the engine then those parts the mechanic replaced are not the problem.
Just a FYI they should be replaced about every 5 years.
If you still have a leak then with the boat out of the water and the boat level on the trailer put the drain plug in and using a garden hose put a few inches of water in the boat. Look under the boat for any dripping and this should point out the location of the leak.
Try these and post back your results and we can go from there once we narrow down where the problem is.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I tried that and found no leaks.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was out for 7 hours and when I cam in I measured the amount of water that came out of the drain plug. 12 gallons of water. No water in the bilge. It all came from between the floor and the hull.
Expert:  Jeff G. replied 1 year ago.
Are there any thru hull fittings? Optional fish boxes?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No fish boxes. O am not sure what hull fitings are.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
my son and i will try to diagnose again tomorrow. Thanks gor your help. Chick
Expert:  Jeff G. replied 1 year ago.
Put the boat in the water until the drive is submerged. Don't run it just let it sit for about 10 minutes then pull it back out. Then drain and check for water. If you now have water then it is coming in through a faulty bellows. The bellows, particularly the shift bellows and the U joint bellows need to be properly installed with the proper adhesive. If not it will continue to leak.
So the two places for a leak are the drive bellows or an actual crack in the hull.
Is the boat on a trailer with bunks or just rollers?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks Jeff, will get back with you tomorrow.
Expert:  Jeff G. replied 1 year ago.
Great look forward to hearing from you.

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