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View Full Version : Winterizing Ballast and Shower


bfinley
10-11-2010, 09:27 AM
How do you guys get antifreeze into the ballast system, shower, and heater? I'm familiar with winterizing the engine, but I don't know how to do these.

jchance
10-12-2010, 10:10 AM
I turn on both the heater and shower while running antifreeze through the engine. That allows the antifreeze to circulate through the heater core (just like a car) and spray out of the shower head. Therefore, both are filled with antifreeze at the end of the process.

As for the ballast system, I pop the pump cartridges out of the bases and that allows the tanks to drain. I also blow through the vents to get any small water pockets emptied.

Shaun315
10-12-2010, 02:43 PM
I don't have a shower, but for the heater i just take the hose off the top of the engine (at the gate valve for the hose to the heater core) and blow the water out of the heater core. You'll be able to tell when the water is out, it'll run out the exhaust drain hole, and you'll have no restriction through the core.

As far as ballast, i have hard tanks in the back and just empty them - for the ski locker ballast bag I pour some RV anti-freeze directly in the bag to take care of that little bit of water left in there.

Thrall
10-12-2010, 05:40 PM
Shower, I just open the mixing valves and shower head, disconnect both hoses from the engine and it seems to drain out fine. Same shower setup on my 190 never froze or broke doing this, hopefully I'm doing it right. Surefire option would be to disconnect both hoses from the engine and funnel some antifreeze thru them while running the pump with the mixing valves and the sprayer open until you cycle some through.
Heater, like Shaun, disconnect the supply hose, blow out the core/lines and then I run a little antifreeze thru it until it starts dripping out the raw water pickup. This takes care of any residual water left in the heater core.
Ballast tanks, there's a port capped off on the manifold on the transom. Stick a hose on that, start running one pump on "fill", funnel a couple gallons into that tank, repeat for the other 2 tanks, then discharge a bit out of each tank until you see coolant coming out of the drains. (make sure to cap off the manifold before draining).
I've been using windshield washer fluid (3 gal per tank) for the ballast tanks. Waaay cheaper than RV antifreeze, good to -20. Can't be too bad for the environment if millions of gallons a year are sprayed into the atmosphere!

dreddy
10-24-2010, 01:34 AM
I was working on getting my ballast tanks winterized as discussed above, and now can't get the ballast pumps to run. Battery is strong and will crank the engine. Does the engine have to be running to crank the pumps? Seems like I have had them on many times without the engine actually running. Fuse? I don't know what else to check.

Wrench27
11-05-2010, 11:55 PM
you have a 06 that means for the ballast you have a garden hose connection in the bilge. look for a white "t" it will be either side of the engine down in the bilge, with just a cap on it that unthreads, slide a 1" hose over it or connect a short piece of hose to it. do all of that after making sure that your 3 tanks are pumped out. then run one pump at a time while pouring in 1 gallon of antifreeze into the hose. that way the pump will pump it into the tank following the way water would just as you were on the lake. then after each tank has a gallon in it. put the cap back on the "t" and pump all 3 tanks out until you antifreeze come out of the empty lines (shoots out of the side) thats all you have to do....

Thrall
11-12-2010, 11:42 AM
I better check mine, because I ran antifreeze into the tanks from a port on the manifold back at the transom. Didn't know there was a tee on the intake line. Upstream from the check valve?

rgardjr1
11-12-2010, 06:19 PM
I better check mine, because I ran antifreeze into the tanks from a port on the manifold back at the transom. Didn't know there was a tee on the intake line. Upstream from the check valve?

I was never able to find a tee on mine. I only looked for it the first time I winterized. I did see the check valve. I just use the fake a lake on the thru-hull ballast pickup on the bottom to suck anti-freeze into the ballast tank.

Thrall
11-15-2010, 02:49 PM
I was never able to find a tee on mine. I only looked for it the first time I winterized. I did see the check valve. I just use the fake a lake on the thru-hull ballast pickup on the bottom to suck anti-freeze into the ballast tank.

Since I sucked the antifreeze in from the manifold in back, I could still have water in the intake line upstream of the check valve. Mine sits in a seldomly heated attached garage. I know it's below freezing in there often, especially when it's -10 or -20 F outside. Maybe I just got lucky last winter or maybe the water leaks back out slowly or gets sucked up??
Either way, I'm going to pull that apart and make sure it's not holding water.

osuwaterboy
12-14-2010, 09:43 PM
I was working on getting my ballast tanks winterized as discussed above, and now can't get the ballast pumps to run. Battery is strong and will crank the engine. Does the engine have to be running to crank the pumps? Seems like I have had them on many times without the engine actually running. Fuse? I don't know what else to check.

I had the same problem. I could turn over the engine but not run the ballast pumps. I could hear the relays for the ballast pumps kick in but the pumps would not run. I charged the batteries until full and then the ballast pumps worked.