Toms Tips About Pretty Engines

By Tom Neale, 4/17/2008

1. Often mechanics, doing a job such as changing a raw water pump impellor or cleaning a heat exchanger, will let raw (salty) water drain onto the engine. Often they can’t do the job without this spillage. The same is true with you and me. When it happens, it’s important to take remedial action.

2. Anytime you have to dump raw water onto parts of the engine, make note of where the water touches the engine and, after the job, spray it with fresh water. Start the engine and let it get warm enough to dry the moisture. Then spray with a good appropriate corrosion inhibitor after the engine cools.

3. You can often avoid raw water spillage on the engine by carefully fashioning a shield/funnel with heavy grade aluminum foil. This causes the spilling water to run down to the bilge on the foil rather than via the engine.

4. Buy a can of manufacturer’s paint (or the equivalent) for your engine and keep it handy. In all seriousness, it’ll help keep the engine looking great and this will help resale value if that’s in the future.

5. Never keep that paint in the engine room or any other heated space or place where it could be near a source or cause of ignition.

6. Also keep nearby (but not near causes of ignition) rust prevention spray, such as WD 40, CRC or Starbright Corrosion Protection Spray Lube. If you have to go hunt these down when you see rust forming, you’ll be less likely to use them.

7. Whenever you spray material such as the products mentioned here, remember that they are probably highly combustible or even explosive. Read and carefully follow all instructions and warnings on the cans.

8. Take great care to not breathe harmful fumes.

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