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Hey guys  - 

 

Reasonably new boat owner here (2nd year).  Last year the boat was in dry stack all winter.  This year, I've upgraded to a covered wet slip on Lake Martin.  I have power on the dock, etc.  I drive a Chaparral 227SSX.  

I was considering a bilge heater, but not sure if I realllly needed it.  Lake Martin water temp won't go below 32, and the boat is an I/O.  So, that means it should have conductive heating of the engine from sitting in the water all the time.  I am thinking that unless the Lake had a long stretch of sub-freezing weather, the boat should be ok?

Should I drain whatever I can off the block into the bilge anyway after use?  Is this something I even need to worry about?  Last week, water temp on Martin was 65 degrees.

 

Thanks!

Jim

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I'm also a new chap. boat owner (246SSI). I keep mine at a marina at Lake Lanier.  I'm probably overly cautious, however,  I bought an "xtreme" bilge heater. I think they are $325 for the smaller 300 watt model. It gives me peace of mind in the event of an "unnatural" freeze in the southeast. I'm in Georgia so not quite as cold as the Carolinas but never the less I went ahead and bought some "insurance" !

whit

Atlanta, Ga

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Now don't laugh, some of the old timers would say. Use a 100 watt light bulb. That would keep the temp up a few degrees and less chance of anything going wrong.

Do I believe it, well to a point.   

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A 100 watt incandescent light bulb will heat the bilge of a small boat, but it is not ignition proof, so not safe to use. A bilge heater is properly designed for the application, but nothing works if the power goes out...

brick

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6 hours ago, brick said:

A 100 watt incandescent light bulb will heat the bilge of a small boat, but it is not ignition proof, so not safe to use. A bilge heater is properly designed for the application, but nothing works if the power goes out...

brick

Yes, you are right. Its not ignition proof rated. But I would not worry about the light itself and use a waterproof socket. As long as its not being controlled from within the engine comportment.

In other words, the light bulb and socket will not spark as long as its installed properly. Its the switch that will spark or just plugging it in. Always use a GFI outlet. 

Not to be harsh,but you mentioned "i had a sub in the engine compartment on my previous 2003 220SSi."     

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12 minutes ago, Iggy said:

Yes, you are right. Its not ignition proof rated. But I would not worry about the light itself and use a waterproof socket. As long as its not being controlled from within the engine comportment.

In other words, the light bulb and socket will not spark as long as its installed properly. Its the switch that will spark or just plugging it in. Always use a GFI outlet. 

Not to be harsh,but you mentioned "i had a sub in the engine compartment on my previous 2003 220SSi."     

I did for a short while. I pulled it out and installed an IB sub in the port seat rear base, neither of which provided good bass response.

No risk of ignition with a speaker (amp was up front). 

brick

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I am on north end of Lanier and have always winterized.....not this year, and of course it just so happened to be the coldest winter we’ve seen so far in GA.  I did let the water drain out of all the plugs into the bilge and I have used the lightbulb in the engine compartment too.  I went out Friday night and everything was fine.  Started right up.  I’m tempted to never spend $280 bucks again to winterize and then have to wait for the rush at the marina to unwinterize before we can go out.  I think the water does provide the extra warmth.  But only to a point.  Just have to keep an eye on temps and if the lake surface starts to freeze then you will most certainly have a problem but has lake Lanier ever froze over?

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