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Fishstick

Mercs Winterized - Need Advice on A/C and Genset

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First winter we have owned the Chap and got the twin Mercs winterized yesterday.  That was an experience I'm glad only comes once per year.

Finding the brass fittings was difficult, getting a tool that fit was harder, not being able to see the fittings was even worse. Working in the engine compartment is not comfortable, my back is killing me, I'll find some 10 year old kid next year or I need to work on my flexibility this coming year! I wish I would of had a mask to breathe through because my insulation is flaking really bad and it became annoying. I'm assuming the insulation is for sound barrier more than anything else. I'm wondering if this is replaceable.

Couldn't get my bilge heater to come on while testing. A quick google and read to turn the spray can upside down, that worked and heater came on.

Got my fresh water tank winterized and then moved to the waste system. Spun the cap off (first time) only to find it didn't have a chain attached to it like my water cap does and yes, it now sits at the bottom of the lake. :(

Having only owned  the Chap for several months now, I've never cleaned the A/C or Genset filters.....and after doing so, it was clear the previous owner didn't either. Man, they were bad but now clean as can be.

I turned the valves off for the head, A/C and Genset, but I'm stuck there.

It's not clear to me how to get anti-freeze through the A/C or Genset. I've googled/youtubed and it seems like it should be really easy, but I can't quite put it together. My boat is in a slip and won't be moved to shore to do this.

Any help on doing these last two items is appreciated. Seems like I would just leave the valves off, turn the A/C and Genset on, and while running, keep pouring AF directly into the strainers, but something tells me there's more to it. 

Thanks in advance.

 

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You mentioned the engines. I too have twins, but with a closed cooling system.

Just an fiy for the next boat.... it takes me about 1 minute per engine. Volvos have a hose on the engine ro flush them. I connect the 5gal can of AF to it. Start the engine as soon as the AF comes out, 30 sec later. Your done!!!! I have seen these hoses added to Mercs too.

On the AC unit, basicly the same thing. Disconnect the hose from the thru hull. Connect the 5gal can of AF to the hose. Turn on the AC unit, in 30 secs you should see to the AF come out of the other thur hull. Again, your donei! Same. With the genset, just use the AF made for engines and have the AF can higher than what ever you are working on.

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To piggyback on Iggy's post, the a/c pump isn't self-priming so take that into account.  Clean the strainers and a/c air filter.

First time winterizing is always tough until you figure out your procedures.  I can fly thru mine now but the first few times took me a lot longer!

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On 11/11/2018 at 8:33 AM, Iggy said:

You mentioned the engines. I too have twins, but with a closed cooling system.

Just an fiy for the next boat.... it takes me about 1 minute per engine. Volvos have a hose on the engine ro flush them. I connect the 5gal can of AF to it. Start the engine as soon as the AF comes out, 30 sec later. Your done!!!! I have seen these hoses added to Mercs too.

On the AC unit, basicly the same thing. Disconnect the hose from the thru hull. Connect the 5gal can of AF to the hose. Turn on the AC unit, in 30 secs you should see to the AF come out of the other thur hull. Again, your donei! Same. With the genset, just use the AF made for engines and have the AF can higher than what ever you are working on.

One minute per engine?! I don't know if I'm mad or jealous :)

I was at the lake today and was going to do the genset and A/C but it was 70 today and then next 10 days look like very mild temps so I will continue to enjoy the boat and wait.

Two stupid questions:

- Does it matter if I turn the A/C on or heater to winterize? I'm not sure I will be able to get the A/C with the cooler temps.

- I poured some anti-freeze in the forward bilge under the steps in the cabin. Is that ok? Any odors or other issues?

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On 11/11/2018 at 9:06 AM, 951Tom said:

To piggyback on Iggy's post, the a/c pump isn't self-priming so take that into account.  Clean the strainers and a/c air filter.

First time winterizing is always tough until you figure out your procedures.  I can fly thru mine now but the first few times took me a lot longer!

Yea, I can already tell the next time will be quicker!

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11 hours ago, Fishstick said:

Yea, I can already tell the next time will be quicker!

It should be reverse cycle, yes? It least mine is and thats why you winterize it. Meaning, it should have a heat and A.C. setting. The main thing is that the pump turns on and with the A.F. can higher than the unit. Your getting both gravity and pump pulling the A.F. into the unit and out. 

Also, with a closed cooling system (just like your car) the is already A.F. in the block. Your just flushing the seawater out of the raw water pump and the heat exchanger. 

 

Why did you pour A.F. in the forward bilge? It won't hurt, but not understanding why. 

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1 hour ago, Iggy said:

Why did you pour A.F. in the forward bilge? It won't hurt, but not understanding why. 

There's always water standing in the forward bilge area, not a lot, but enough to annoy me so I had a little bit of AF left in a bottle and poured it in.

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55 minutes ago, Fishstick said:

There's always water standing in the forward bilge area, not a lot, but enough to annoy me so I had a little bit of AF left in a bottle and poured it in.

Oh!

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If you closed the seacock to the genny and poured a/f into the strainer ad shut down when you saw it coming out the boat wouldn't that work? Same for the a/c.

 

 

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On 11/18/2018 at 12:21 PM, jeffk said:

If you closed the seacock to the genny and poured a/f into the strainer ad shut down when you saw it coming out the boat wouldn't that work? Same for the a/c.

 

 

That's how I winterize both the a/c and the genny.  Pour antifreeze in the strainer and let the system run it through.

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On 11/17/2018 at 7:00 PM, Fishstick said:

One minute per engine?! I don't know if I'm mad or jealous :)

I was at the lake today and was going to do the genset and A/C but it was 70 today and then next 10 days look like very mild temps so I will continue to enjoy the boat and wait.

Two stupid questions:

- Does it matter if I turn the A/C on or heater to winterize? I'm not sure I will be able to get the A/C with the cooler temps.

- I poured some anti-freeze in the forward bilge under the steps in the cabin. Is that ok? Any odors or other issues?

If your A/C also heats, then it doesn’t matter which mode it is in when you winterize. 

The pump does not self-prime so it won’t pull up antifreeze from a bottle below it. You need a container held higher than the pump and run a hose down to the pump.

The generator has an impeller just like your engines. It will suck up antifreeze.

The antifreeze in the bilge may develop a smell over the winter. It happens to some people if they leave spilled antifreeze in the bilge. 

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38 minutes ago, rjbergen said:

The pump does not self-prime so it won’t pull up antifreeze from a bottle below it. You need a container held higher than the pump and run a hose down to the pump.

On my a/c there is a strainer under the steps where the pump also resides.  I simply pour into the strainer and it feeds the a/c quite well.  It may be slightly higher than the pump, so maybe that's why.

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I’m having some issues.

At the lake this weekend.

Before I left two weeks ago I closed the valves off for the genset and A/C.

i opened the valve for the genset today and just wanted to first start it and let it run. It starts but no water exits the boat, only exhaust. I had previously two weeks ago cleaned the strainer. Turned it off then back on, still exhaust. I don’t know why it isn’t taking in lake water, new impeller and ran just fine before I cleaned the strainer.

 

To the A/C. Open the valve turn heater on and water discharges from boat, good. Turn off, open and remove strainer, I have a large container setting on top of strainer and fill with AF. Turn A/C back on and it doesn’t take the AF. Nothing discharges. Remove container, put strainer back in and turn on. A/C back on. Again, nothing discharges from boat, turn off.

Any help appreciated.

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I can tell you how I do it and it works.  I disconnect the hose from the thru hull. Than connect the AF hose to the hose you just taken off the thru hull. 

 

Have the bottle of AF on the Cockpit deck. So now the hose is running down into the engine compartment. Connect the 2 hoses, so now gravity and the pump will pull the AF out of the bottle. It should work.

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