Follow These 5 Tips to Keep the Bilge Pump in Good Condition
Boat maintenance is crucial. Regular checkups and servicing will help keep your vessel in good condition for longer. It also allows you to enjoy your boating and fishing trips without much worry about mechanical problems that can ruin your day.
One of the essential components of a vessel is the bilge pump. It is a crucial part of any boat because it keeps much water from gathering in the vessel. As the bilge pump plays a vital role in keeping the engine area dry, you surely would want to maintain it in its best condition.
What is a Bilge Pump and Why is it Important?
There are many ways through which the water can gather in your boat’s bottom. Rain, spray from ocean waves, or even you or someone jumping on your vessel after a bit of swim or scuba diving, chances are there to get the water on board. Suppose too much water finds its way in. In that case, it can be a severe problem, especially if you are offshore. That is the time when a bilge pump comes into action.
The bilge is the lowest part of the vessel. It has an electric pump that pumps out the water from your boat through the bilge. If you find any issue with the bilge pump system on your vessel or it is out of service, we advise you to consider it first while repowering a boat. For small recreational boats, a manual bilge pump can also work well. However, for bigger vessels, you need an automatic bilge pump. Most boat builders manufacture vessels with improvised designs of the bilge pump. Based on the water level in the bilge, this pump automatically turns on when required. It helps maintain the water level in the bilge and keeps your vessel dry.
Attwoood Tsunami T500 GPH Bilge Pump
How to Maintain Bilge Pump on Your Boat?
Like other marine electronics and boat components, you must regularly check and service the bilge pump. An adequately maintained bilge pump lasts longer and can save you from spending too much on boat repairs.
Here are some considerations you can follow to ensure a long lifespan and efficient working of the bilge pump on your boat.
Generally, such a system comes with some screen on the inlet port or hose of the pump, which prevents debris and other small particles from coming into the pump that can damage it. A bilge pump can also feature a thru-hull fitting and non-return or check valves to prevent the water from entering the bilge area.
Boats like Thunder Jet 21 Chinook Pro and others have a dual bilge system to eliminate flooding water. Therefore, you may get a sign of some relief if, in case, one pump stops working suddenly. However, we recommend regularly upkeep the functionality of the bilge pump with professional help from the boat dealers on Vancouver Island, BC or in the area you live.
Below are some vital considerations for maintaining a bilge pump.
1. First Thing First
Before going on your boating or fishing trip, turn the pump on and check if it is throwing the water out and if it is flowing from the system’s discharge outlet. If you have dried up your boat already, you can pour water into the vessel to check the pump’s working.
When you start the pump and hear the sound, that doesn’t mean it is running correctly. Don’t make any assumptions. It is essential to check if the motor is actually pumping the water out of the boat.
2. Check the Screen
Look for debris or dust on the pump’s screen box or inlet display. If the screen is blocked by debris, it might get overheated or fail because it will become challenging to make the water flow through the system. Remove the debris and other particles if seen, and replace the screen if damaged. You can visit your nearby boat repair & maintenance shop in Vancouver Island, BC, to get the required accessories and components at your convenience.
3. Examine the Wiring
You can sit back and relax about checking the electronics in your bilge pump if you have the manual system.
However, most of the modern-built vessels have automatic bilge pumps. That means it receives the power from your boat’s battery or engine. It gets the required charge through the wiring system. Hence, please keep the wires in proper shape. Inspect the electrical system in the pump from time to time, before and after every trip. Look for any wear or tear in the cable housing, and repair the boat wiring if you find any damage.
Attwood Bilge Pump Installation Kit
4. Inspect and Test
Look for the splits or kinks in the discharge pipe or hose, which can prevent the water from being pumped out through the bilge in no time. There should be no crimped or crushed areas in the hoses and pipes.
Check for corrosion or clogs in the built-in check valves. The thru-hull fittings and valves should work correctly and not contain any debris. Ensure that any particles do not block the discharge point of the pump.
Attwood Stainless Steel Straight Thru-Hulls,Threaded
5. Check the Fuse and Impeller
A fuse helps control the flow of electricity to the pump. It prevents any damage to the bilge pump from working due to a sudden power supply when you turn on the switch. However, these fuses can blow with time and uses. Replace them when required. Connect with a marine service specialist if you have to change the fuse every couple of outings on the water, as it might be the time to repair your bilge pump.
Inspect the working of the impeller. It should spin freely, without resistance, when you turn it by hand. Replace it if you notice any damage in its parts. Even if no significant issue is found, you should change the impeller every year.
It is relatively easy to maintain the bilge pump on your boat in good condition. Regular inspection and servicing are all that you need to do. Following the above tips means you are nearly ensuring the best state of working of the bilge pump.
For more considerations about servicing the bilge pump on the vessel or any query about the accessories, components, or saltwater fishing boats for sale in Canada, you can contact us at Alberni Power & Marine. Our dedicated, professional team will be happy to assist you with any of your marine requirements.