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View Full Version : How do you winterize Heater / Ballast?


bturner2
08-27-2009, 10:54 AM
I'm already starting to perpare for the long Michigan winter and need advise on how to store up the heater and ballast system on my 07 X2. This is the first time I've had either system and could use the advise of our TT members for any tips on how to get it right the first time.

bigmac
08-27-2009, 12:02 PM
Can't help you with ballast, but for the heater I would recommend pumping some RV antifreeze in there. There is usually a double-barbed fitting on one of the lines sitting in the bilge - I disconnect it, attach an RV water line hand pump to it and pump in antifreeze until I hear it splashing into the block. Takes about 5 minutes.

Consider using -100 propylene glycol if you live in a particularly cold climate.

Other option for the heater is just blowing some air through it.


$13 at Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Camco-Manufacturing-Inc-36003-Fittings/dp/B0006IX7YW)

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31FBBXBW1FL._SL500_AA280_.jpg

I would imagine that winterizing ballast would also optimally involve some RV antifreeze.

SKIBUMM
08-27-2009, 08:46 PM
I also can't help with the balasy but I would gues that emptying them out would suffice as it would have plenty of room for expansion. I do a similar thing to winterize my whole boat including the heater. I have a 5 gallon bucket with a hose connection on the bottom and I start and run the boat on the hose until the motor is warmed up and then I diconnect the fake lake from the hose and I attach it to the bucket and set it on the swim platform. I fill the bucket up with RV -100 anitfreeze and run the boat until I see the antifreeze running out of the exhaust and I run it until the bucket is almost empty and shut the boat off. I do it this way so that my impeller and heater have fluid in them. The water pump impeller will last longer if it does not dry out over the winter.

bturner2
08-28-2009, 02:29 PM
Great ideas. I figured the best way to make sure the heater core was protected but this is the first pump I saw.....Thanks

bigmac
08-28-2009, 02:37 PM
IMHO, blow air through *probably* would work, but I'd be concerned about blowing the water out, then stopping after you hear air going through it, only to have residual water in those little aluminum tubes drip back down to the bottom of the heater core where then can freeze and still rupture it.

eddyb
08-31-2009, 06:06 PM
I'm reading this thread and would like to know what you mean by the heater.

Thanks

flipper
08-31-2009, 06:17 PM
I'm reading this thread and would like to know what you mean by the heater.

Thanks

Some have a cockpit heater

bigmac
08-31-2009, 06:30 PM
I'm reading this thread and would like to know what you mean by the heater.

Thanks

Hot air hydronic heater...like you have in your car. Can be had as a factory option or aftermarket add-on.

http://www.heatercraft.com/category.aspx?categoryID=4

JimN
08-31-2009, 06:56 PM
I'm already starting to perpare for the long Michigan winter and need advise on how to store up the heater and ballast system on my 07 X2. This is the first time I've had either system and could use the advise of our TT members for any tips on how to get it right the first time.

If you have a dealer near you, get the info on how they do it and consider whether you want it take it on. Think about the cost relative to your time, knowledge, tools, supplies and abilities before deciding to do this. Then, think about what happens if something doesn't go right. Your insurance won't cover a cracked block/manifolds or heater but the dealer's should. If you have never owned a boat before, you may ask to watch while you have someone else do it the first time.

TheOneandOnly
09-23-2009, 11:03 PM
I also can't help with the balasy but I would gues that emptying them out would suffice as it would have plenty of room for expansion. I do a similar thing to winterize my whole boat including the heater. I have a 5 gallon bucket with a hose connection on the bottom and I start and run the boat on the hose until the motor is warmed up and then I diconnect the fake lake from the hose and I attach it to the bucket and set it on the swim platform. I fill the bucket up with RV -100 anitfreeze and run the boat until I see the antifreeze running out of the exhaust and I run it until the bucket is almost empty and shut the boat off. I do it this way so that my impeller and heater have fluid in them. The water pump impeller will last longer if it does not dry out over the winter.


Ok ive done it last year the fun way by removing all the hoses, knock sensors etc. Will this way work just as well? Pros chime in please??
Thanks

TOO-TALL
09-23-2009, 11:34 PM
Here's what I do.

-Hook up fake a lake run boat to get to operating temp.
-Shut boat off
-Remove knock senser's,Drain plugs in block,Drain out exshust risers.Put plugs back in.
-Remove both heater lines at motor.Then blow into heater line(no compresser)in till all water is out.Reconnect hose's.
-Now fill a 5 gallon bucket full of antifreeze and put the raw water pick up line in it.Start boat and run till all antifreeze is gone.And running out exshaust.
-Motor and heater are now done.
-If you have a shower.Run the shower while the motor is sucking up the antifreeze you will see antifreeze come out the shower.
-Shower is done.

Ballast....
-I just go to auto zone and found a hand pump.
-I put one end of the hand pump hose in the ballast over flow and the other end of the hand pump hose in a gallon jug of antifreeze.Then pump in about 1/2 gallon in each tank.
-Then cycle the pumps a few times fill/empty to get the antifreeze to the ballast manifold.
-Ballast done.

This has worked for me for the last 3 years in the Cold midwest winters.

JohnE
09-24-2009, 09:07 AM
Too-Tall, why do you say no compressor when blowing out the heater? I've used a compressor on the advice of my dealer.

bigmac
09-24-2009, 09:21 AM
Too-Tall, why do you say no compressor when blowing out the heater? I've used a compressor on the advice of my dealer.

I assume that those Heatercraft cores are built at least close to automotive standards, but I would be very worried about pressurizing that heater core much above the 14-or-so psi that auto systems sustain.

My approach has always been to blow it out with lung power, then pump in some antifreeze until I hear it trickling back into the block. It's a simple process. One of the lines (can't remember which) has a double barbed fitting and it's easy to just detach that and pump through that. Another option is to replace that double barbed fitting with a flushing T fitting or install a $6 Prestone Flush n' Fill.

http://www.supremehardware.com/catalog/412775.jpg

ttu
09-24-2009, 10:12 AM
here are the ballast instructions for 07 and newer

suppose to be 91 degrees in tulsa this sunday. not ready to winterize yet!:D

JohnE
09-24-2009, 11:43 AM
I assume that those Heatercraft cores are built at least close to automotive standards, but I would be very worried about pressurizing that heater core much above the 14-or-so psi that auto systems sustain.
]


If both hoses are disconnected, you are not pressurizing it are you? Just blowing a bunch of air through. Don't get me wrong, I'm not blasting it. Just using the blower attachement and poofing some through.

bigmac
09-24-2009, 12:21 PM
If both hoses are disconnected, you are not pressurizing it are you? Just blowing a bunch of air through. Don't get me wrong, I'm not blasting it. Just using the blower attachement and poofing some through.

IMHO, there's enough resistance through the tubing in the core to allow pressures to go higher than I would want them to go in my boat if I used an air compressor. Anyway, IMHO, it's just easier to disconnect one hose, pucker up, and blow. After you can hear the core is empty, hook up the antifreeze pump to that hose give it a few pumps until you hear AF trickling back into the block, reconnect the hose ends, and done. It's about a 5 minute process including the beer.

JohnE
09-24-2009, 01:06 PM
IMHO, there's enough resistance through the tubing in the core to allow pressures to go higher than I would want them to go in my boat if I used an air compressor. Anyway, IMHO, it's just easier to disconnect one hose, pucker up, and blow. After you can hear the core is empty, hook up the antifreeze pump to that hose give it a few pumps until you hear AF trickling back into the block, reconnect the hose ends, and done. It's about a 5 minute process including the beer.

Can't argue with that.:cool:

TheOneandOnly
09-24-2009, 01:28 PM
I just disconnect both heater lines and hook up the hose to the antifreeze bottle then put the tube inside of one side of the hose you may need to grip your hand around the end alittle to prevent it from coming backwards. Then squeeze the bottle until i see antifreeze come out the other hose I did that last year its a 2 minute process with the hoses removed

ttu
09-24-2009, 01:32 PM
on the heater, i just disconnect both hoses and use a shop vac in the reverse direction and blow the lines clear. has worked for me for 2 years.

H20BOY
09-24-2009, 01:41 PM
I just disconnect both heater lines and hook up the hose to the antifreeze bottle then put the tube inside of one side of the hose you may need to grip your hand around the end alittle to prevent it from coming backwards. Then squeeze the bottle until i see antifreeze come out the other hose I did that last year its a 2 minute process with the hoses removed

I know this might be a stupid question, but which hoses are you disconnecting?

Thrall
09-27-2009, 01:31 AM
Which drain holes arew the overflow for each ballast tank on an 06 X2? I haven't run the boat enough yet to have them memorized and don't feel like filling the ballsat to figure it out. I presume I can just dump some antifreeze in each overflow, and run the pumps for a sec to get antifreeze in the pumps.
I see a Tee on one of the lines coming out of the ballast manifold. Can I hook some coolant up there and run the pumps in fill mode to suck antifreeze into the tanks instead of going thru the overflows?

vision
09-27-2009, 02:38 AM
I can not tell you which side through hulls are your ballast and which are bilge on your 06 X2. But, on both my 08 X-star and previous 05 X-2, the side through hulls for the ballast have a different tube on the inside than the bilge pump through hulls. When you stick your finger in the through hull, the ballast through hulls and bilge through hulls feel different.

If you have 3 through hulls on your starboard side, the one that feels different is your bilge. Once you know which is the bilge on the starboard side, it is easy to tell which is the bilge and which is ballast on the port side.

But, check your bilge after you put in the first quart of anti-freeze just to make sure you have the correct through hulls!

vision
09-27-2009, 02:45 AM
As for the heater, I placed a standard brass male and female garden hose connection in both heater hoses.

After each run in the winter, I disconnect both heater hoses at the garden hose connection, run antifreeze into one tube until it pass runs through the heater core and out the other tube, and then leave the tubes disconnected until the next run.

I used to just blow out the core, until a small amount of water last year cracked the core. Now, I rely on anti-freeze.

Thrall
09-28-2009, 09:25 PM
FYI, the tee on one of teh drain lines by the ballast manifold works great for winterizing. Hooked up a hose connection there, run pump to fill, dump in antifreeze, repeat for each tank, empty each tank until some colored water spits out, done.
ANyone ever use windshield washer fluid instead of RV antifreeze? Cheaper, -20 protection?
I wasn't happy that there was enough antifreeze in each tank with 1 gal per tank, assuming there was a few gal of water left in each tank, so I threw in a gal of windshield washer in each tank too.
(Note, my boat won't see anywhere near zero for any length of time unless the power goes out for days on the coldest week of the year. If it does, we'll all be sitting in the boat next to the propane heater!:D)