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Water in Bilges

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    Water in Bilges

    Hello everyone!

    I am a new boat owner and new to the forum, my wife and I recently purchased a 1999 Bayliner Avanit Sunbridge 3255, so I thought I would start our relationship out with a problem.

    As the title suggest, I have water in my bilges and I am looking to see if this model boat has a "known source" answer. Since we brought the boat home, there has been water in the bilges and I see a lot of forums stating "a little water is okay/normal", but I am a firm believer in small problems lead to big problems. I did recently replace the bilge pump with an 1100 g/h pump and it is doing a great job thus far. I felt the previous model was under rated for the bilge size, and the impeller had come loose from the shaft, so I felt it was time for a new one.
    After I get the bilges cleaned out this weekend, I will be checking the obvious sources: fresh water system, engine cooling system, transom inlets, A/C strainer inlet, any thru-hull fittings...

    Just wondering if anyone knew of hull integrity issues with this model boat. Survey showed the hull was dry before purchase, but we all know that is not an end all/be all test.


    Welcome. Note that if there is water in the bilge a bilge pump cannot get it all out as it will start sucking air when the water level drops low enough. Water can enter the bilge from many sources; leaking thru hull, leaking bellows or driveshaft seal, leaking hose on an engine, leaking fresh water system, rain (either directly or a leak around a rail station, windshield, ...).
    1997 Maxum 2400 SCR 5.7LX Bravo II




      Thanks for a quick response. I will be looking at that this Saturday once I get them emptied, cleaned, and dried out. I do understand that my bilge pump will only empty the water to a certain level.

      I was hoping someone familiar with this model boat could make a statement of "lay on your left side in the port side of the engine bilge looking forward while arching your back towards the hatch cover to avoid the A/C inlet strainer, using your phone camera on mega super zoom look all the way forward 20' while your 1st Mate has the garden hose on bucket fill nozzle spraying the second rail of the port side and measure the water ingress rate..."



      • Pipmeister
        Pipmeister commented
        Editing a comment

      I have had several Bayliners that have had water leaks through the horn( if it is mounded in the hull) and the anchor locker. My current boat a 2001 2855 had the condensation pump for the air conditioner fail
      and filled up the nose of the boat with water. The pump in a box dedicated to just the air unit, of course the only way to get to it was pull the air unit. Not fun!


        So I was able to get the bilges cleaned out this Saturday. Took the boat out on Sunday for about 45 minutes and noticed there was a small amount of oil in the bilges. Discovered my makeshift oil resiviour cap was not doing the job (port engine remote cap is missing, can be seen in the picture). New cap is on order and should fix my problems. I was also able to determine the reason for my water level in the bilges was due to my previously stated bad bilge pump and rain.


          mine towing U-bolt was letting in water, just disconnected it then coated it in 3m 4200 and reinstalled, been dry ever since.


            My experience is no matter what I do, there’s always some water in the bilge. Most often it’s from washing the boat down and overwhelming the scuppers.
            P/C Pete
            Edmonds Yacht Club (Commodore 1993)
            1988 3818 "GLAUBEN”
            Hino EH700 175 Onan MDKD Genset
            MMSI 367770440


              If you are concerned about getting more water out than your current pump will do - take a look at this. Watch the video too:

              Port: Sassafras River Georgetown, MD Bayliner 2000 2855 7.4



              • pgiconch
                pgiconch commented
                Editing a comment
                Cool pump. Thanks for sharing.

              I have had 4 Bayliners, bought all when new. Every one of them
              had freshwater in the bilge. Our last boat that is now 10 years old, took about 5 years to stop all the rainwater leaks to at least a reasonable level. Just get in the bilge when there is a good rain storm and have a flashlight. Good luck and be patient. Griff