We have a 280 express cruiser and the boat is on dry land. It doesn't matter if the cockpit cover is on the boat or the camper canvas....when it rains our aft cabin is wet. We used 5200 sealer around the cabin windows and around the screws on the rub rail but it still leaks. Pulled fridge in galley and water just meets the carpet behind fridge and goes as far down as the vinyl wall to the back of the aft cabin but mainly is wet on the outer side of the boat. CAN NOT FIND WHERE IT'S COMING FROM !! Does anyone have this problem and if so, where was the rain coming in from? As long as our Fisher Winter Canvas is on it's nice and dry.


  • TikiHut2TikiHut2 Sarasota, FlMember Posts: 1,431 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2013
    If you're sure it's not a leakey condensation line or something internal like a sink drain or even a leaky boat cover then a helper with a water hose outside spraying suspect areas while you dig around inside with a flashlight is the next line of defense. 

    An old sailboat trick that always works is to tape up/seal the cockpit/cabin with visqueen and pressurize it with a large leaf blower/carpet dryer/shopvac. Then get a thick soap/water solution in a spray bottle and bucket and lather every screw hole, port hole and deck penetration......and the broad deck too, read on.

     We tried everything to find a frustrating leak in our old boat. After re-bedding nearly every fitting we grudgingly did the pressure test and in 10mins found that the nagging leak ended up being a very slight but somewhat common gelcoat defect out on the front deck about the size of a pencil lead. It would pour a solid stream of water during a rain but it was nowhere near the interior water spot. Water would run across the inside of the interior liner creating a virtually untraceable leak. 

    Hope that yours is easier to find but that's a great old sailor trick if you don't.

    Hey, welcome back to the forum and good luck, Mike
    2004 FV270, 300hp 5.7 350mag MPI Merc 305hrs, 2:20 Bravo3 OD w.22p props, 12v Lenco tabs, Kohler 5kw genset, A/C, etc.etc...
    Regular weekender, Trailer stored indoors, M/V TikiHut, Sarasota, Fl
  • dejavudejavu Member Posts: 3
    Wow that sounds like a great idea !! Do you mean seal only around the cockpit/cabin door or other areas in the cabin too?
    BTW ...I wasn't dejavu on the previous forum.
    Thanks for the response ..
  • TikiHut2TikiHut2 Sarasota, FlMember Posts: 1,431 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2013
    A new dejavu.....Yogi Berra would have fun with that. Welcome too.

    For the pressure test you'd want a couple rolls of duct tape and a piece of visqueen big enough to cover the edges of cockpit and up across the lower front edge of the windsheild but not on the deck(it may be leaking at the deck joint). Tightly close the exterior hatches and ports, tape off the back of the engine hatch, bilge blower vents and any drain holes like the bilge pump and sink drains. You want to pressurize the cabin and cockpit. Tape your blower to the cover somewhere convenient and get your soap solution ready. At this point you might be very close to finding more leaks than you'd think. Turn the blower on and check for any spots that need to be re-taped to better seal the air bag you've created.

    Pressurize the boat and start mopping or spraying your solution on every fitting, screw, extrusion, deck joint, hull to deck joint, rub rail, etc.. and finally the flat areas of the deck to check for gelcoat nics or blems that are hard to see like mine was.

    Re-bed any leaky hardware with Butyl tape instead of 3m 5200. Dab screws with 5200 when you re-set them.

    Start to finish it should take no more than a couple of hours to test the boat with a helper. I wish I'd have started with a pressure test before I wasted a ton of time guessing and re-bedding hardware that wasn't a problem. Have a good summer and I hope it's a dry one.

    2004 FV270, 300hp 5.7 350mag MPI Merc 305hrs, 2:20 Bravo3 OD w.22p props, 12v Lenco tabs, Kohler 5kw genset, A/C, etc.etc...
    Regular weekender, Trailer stored indoors, M/V TikiHut, Sarasota, Fl
  • dejavudejavu Member Posts: 3
    Thank you so much for all your time and help. We are going to try the pressure test and I'll let you know what we find. I feel like maybe there's some hope now 


  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDMember, Moderator Posts: 5,814 mod

    Tiki, that is really a neat idea!  A picture of the setup would really help visualize it if you have one.

    Dejavu all over again! (welcome aboard)


    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

  • TikiHut2TikiHut2 Sarasota, FlMember Posts: 1,431 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Here's a couple of links that I found for sailboat leak testing. 

    The 1st one is generally for a small boat but the principal is similar. This one warns that you shouldn't fill the boat with water to see where it comes out!? ;)  (Good advice on a powerboat for sure)

    This is for a larger boat and the principal is also similar. Thoroughly bag the boat cockpit and cabin (although they didn't do the cockpit here) and blow into the bag you've created then spray/sponge soapy water everywhere. Look for bubbles.

    Good luck, Mike
    2004 FV270, 300hp 5.7 350mag MPI Merc 305hrs, 2:20 Bravo3 OD w.22p props, 12v Lenco tabs, Kohler 5kw genset, A/C, etc.etc...
    Regular weekender, Trailer stored indoors, M/V TikiHut, Sarasota, Fl
  • wm61356wm61356 Harrison Twp., MIMember Posts: 201 ✭✭✭

    I had the exact same problem on my 2008 280. Every time it rained the aft cabin would get wet near the back. The water was coming in from a lack of proper silicone sealer application at the bolts that attach the arch to the hull. This was a well known problem on many 280's. To verify that is where the water is getting in, remove the speaker from the arch on the side of the boat that gets wet and look into the arch with a flashlight. You can see the bolts that hold the arch to the hull (I believe there are 3 on each side if I remember correctly). On my 280 I could see water dripping off the bolts when a helper sprayed water on the arch to hull area. To repair the leak, simply remove the nuts and washers from each bolt one at a time and apply a liberal amount of marine silicone sealer around each bolt, reinstall the washers and nuts and tighten appropriately. It is a simple fix that will only take a few minutes to do. According to Rinker, they also had a problem with a lack of sealer around the aft cabin window, but that wasn’t the case with the 280 I owned. Regardless, I would check the arch bolts first because they are easier to get to. To get to the window you have to remove the shelving and vinyl on the inside of the hull in the aft cabin. I hope this helps you find your leak.

  • Lifes GoodLifes Good Member Posts: 465 ✭✭✭
    on my 320 I had to reseal the forward port window. seal the three bolts on arch. pull the rub rail and seal the screw holes left open at the factory when the top is fitted to the hull. reseal each screw. she is bone dry 24/7 365. pain in the rear but worth the hassle. quick note. on the 320 the starboard arch connection is over the back corner of the fuel tank. hence water puddles up near the tank access point. not good. worth the look!
  • lesles Member Posts: 24
    I have water coming in each time it rains in my f270 forward port window. I sealed all screws on rub rail and screws close to window. Water still coming in. Frustrated.
  • Black_DiamondBlack_Diamond Holland, MichiganMember Posts: 4,882 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 2014
    You probably need to pull the window and reseal it. I know mine were poorly sealed.  It is a bit of a chore, but once you get it all apart, heavily caulk under the SS trim ring and the mating joint when it goes back together.
    Post edited by Black_Diamond on

    2003 342FV "Black Diamond", 350 MAG MPI, 20P 4x4 Props, PC BYC, Holland, MI
  • lesles Member Posts: 24
    I took the window out. What a mess the foam on the walls was soaked behind vinyl wall cover all the way to anchor locker and the carpet under Matress .
    I am re sealing hope that cures it.
  • Cableguy GregCableguy Greg Pittsburgh, PAMember Posts: 4,255 ✭✭✭✭✭
    How do you get the port windows out? Is it just the 5 screws that are seen on the inside or are there screws under the stainless trim ring on the outside?
    2008 280 Express Cruiser, 6.2MPI, B3, Pittsburgh, PA "Blue Ayes"
    Go Steelers!!!
  • Black_DiamondBlack_Diamond Holland, MichiganMember Posts: 4,882 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Take the screws out from the inside, note there is one under the hinge that is hard to see.  Then you have to cut the caulk line between the SS trim and the plastic part, it will pull out from inside.  Then there are several screws you will see that hold the SS trim ring in place once you have it apart.  I used a <i></i>very<i></i> gentle heat (flameless micro soldering tool) to heat the SS up the outside, this breaks the caulk from it so it comes out.  I bet you will find the amount of caulk is surprizingly small.  I used almost a 14oz tube of caulk per port window to reseal mine.

    As an added tip: use blue painters tape and tape the SS trim to the hull before you take it out, then razor trim around the SS ring and leave the tape on the hull.  You'll need this to get it back together all aligned easily as the hole and the trim ring are very loose fits.

    2003 342FV "Black Diamond", 350 MAG MPI, 20P 4x4 Props, PC BYC, Holland, MI
  • SkipperSkipper Member Posts: 10
    edited November 2014
    have the same problem with my Fiesta Vee 270. The carpet is wet just at the floor of the aft cabin berth close to the rally cupboard with no sign of water above this point. Anyone with similar problems discover their leak? Don't fancy the prospect of looking at every screw fixing, although I've noticed a bit of green growth around the rub rail directly above the damp patch in the carpet...
  • MarkBMarkB OntarioMember Posts: 3,426 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Before you go ripping out your rub rails, just make sure it isn't leaking through the cabin door.  If your drain is blocked (behind helm steering area), and in particular if the boat lists to port, then you could have rain water overflowing from the track.  It would take a lot of rain, but have a look. You may say I have a canvas over this area, but the canvas has small openings around the center panel zip that can leak.

    Boat Name: King Kong

    "Boat + Water = Fun"

  • Michael TMichael T Member Posts: 6,872 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Also pull the black "plastic" strip from the bottom rail of your windshield. many times I've seen missing screws, screws that were half out of their holes and screws that had no caulking in their holes first. that can let in a LOt of water. Also make sure the windshield drain holes are unobstructed. next make sure anything that penetrates the hull is sealed. A culprit in this area can be failing rubber gaskest for the shore power receptacles. Good Luck. MT
  • RinkerNorwayRinkerNorway Member Posts: 14
    Bringing up an old thread here. :)

    Seems like my pantry/Galley(?) window is leaking so the mattress and floor in the aft cabin is soaking wet.

    Tried to remove the window today, removed all(!) screws but could not move it.

    What is the SS trim? Is it the stainless/aluminium window trim on the outside ?
    Do i need to cut something from the outside before i can take the window inwards?

    Any help/tricks in order to remove the window(without anything falling into the sea would be very appreciated

  • reneechris14reneechris14 Pawcatuck river CTMember Posts: 2,541 ✭✭✭✭
    I had the same leak under cercit panel.2002 270fv carpet in aft entry.found the shore power plug leaking.seal on out side good but not in where the plug goes.pulled micro out to find it.
    2005 Rinker FV342  Pawcatuck river,Ct
  • Black_DiamondBlack_Diamond Holland, MichiganMember Posts: 4,882 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The SS trim ring is held in place with screws thru tabs radially to the hole. You have to takeout the inner plastic part first. Will need to cut the caulk between the trim ring and the plastic portion meeting it. 

    To get the trim ring off, be very careful, it easily bends. I used a small flameless butane soldering type iron to heat the trim ring, that will break the caulk seal. Before you remove it, tape over the ring with blue painters tape and then cut around the ring. Leave the tape on the hull; you need to do this to re-align it. 

    I used boat-life caulk, filled the trim ring with it, then reinstalled, this will ensure a seal. 

    2003 342FV "Black Diamond", 350 MAG MPI, 20P 4x4 Props, PC BYC, Holland, MI
  • Michael TMichael T Member Posts: 6,872 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 2016
    @RinkerNorway...good advice from BD. be very careful when removing the outer casing as it will be caulked tight to the gel coat. depending on what was used in the factory and, yes, it could have been 5200 you can remove chunks of gel coat if you are not very careful....we slid a box cutter all the way around under the outer trip piece and that worked well.
    Post edited by Michael T on
  • RinkerNorwayRinkerNorway Member Posts: 14
    Good morning.

    Tried replying here 2 days ago, with a picture and more accurate description. When posting, it said that my post would need approval from a moderator (?) 

    My post is still not showing...

    Are all post going thru moderators?
  • Black_DiamondBlack_Diamond Holland, MichiganMember Posts: 4,882 ✭✭✭✭✭
    That is some odd random error. I have had that happen too. You might try deleting the cookies on your computer and try again. 

    2003 342FV "Black Diamond", 350 MAG MPI, 20P 4x4 Props, PC BYC, Holland, MI
  • raybo3raybo3 Revere MAModerator Posts: 4,506 mod
    RinkerNorway are you sure it said moderator??? We can not approve post only edit or delete. We can ban " bad" members. But that about all we can do.
    2002 342 Fiesta Vee PC Point Of Pines YC Revere MA. popyc.org     [email protected]
  • Handymans342Handymans342 Member Posts: 8,240 ✭✭✭✭✭
  • RinkerNorwayRinkerNorway Member Posts: 14
    OK then :)

    I'll try again.

    First off, i have used the garden hose to ensure the water is coming from the window in the pantry(removed fridge and yes, this is clearly where it comes in.

    The to the window removal in what i hope is the correct way.

    - Remove screws from the inside.
    - Go out.
    -Tape SS Trim to hull
    - Heat SS Trim/Cut the inside area where the SS trim is (picture with arrow)

    -keep tape and remove SS Trim
    -Find some more screws behind where SS Trim was
    -Loosen above mentioned screws
    -Go inside
    -Remove window from inside
    -Clean window and/remove all old caulk
    -Clean hull from old caulk
    -Reinsert window and insert plenty of caulk
    -Tighten window with screws behind SS Trim and inside
    -More caulk and mount SS Trim. Will be using Terostot 2759 

    Sooo.. if anyone could confirm is this is the correct way, that would be highly appreciated :)

    I'm pretty new to the boating world and also marine expressions in English. so bear with me here ;)
    Cars are way easier to work on!  :)

  • Michael TMichael T Member Posts: 6,872 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Enough caulking that it oozes out past the frame a bit and wipe it off with clean rags. You may find you gave some slight water damage in the hull side. IF and I repeat IF this is the case it is not difficult to fix. We replaced two of the big side windows on my 2014 Rinker EC 360 and an important piece of advice I was given by the manufacturer and Rinker was to not over tighten the two halves of the window when re-installing of it could crack when heated by the sun. Just hand tight I was told. I translated that to mean firm but not hard twist tight.
  • bigal6030bigal6030 Member Posts: 157 ✭✭
    Well I also get some water at the base of my little pantry on my 2006 -270
    i did Rebed some screws in the rub rail that seemed to help 
    definitely going yo check the windows
    i wonder what the delet would charge to pull and reseal all 4 

    Big Al - 2006 - 270 Express Crusier

    Home port: Hammond Ind.

  • NavyCTRCNavyCTRC Pensacola, FLMember Posts: 303 ✭✭✭
    If it rains hard my cabin door leaks at the bottom left side, pours water right down on the carpet and stairs like a waterfall.  The drain hole behind the dash can't keep up with a hard rain.   Is there an easy fix for this?  I have some regular foam molding but I am hesitant to use it in that location.  How do I make the door fit tighter?
  • MarkBMarkB OntarioMember Posts: 3,426 ✭✭✭✭✭
    You might want to try and clear that drain behind the helm. It should keep up unless you are talking monsoon rain.  Do you have fishing tape that you can move through the eyelet working from the through hull?

    Boat Name: King Kong

    "Boat + Water = Fun"

  • NavyCTRCNavyCTRC Pensacola, FLMember Posts: 303 ✭✭✭
    I will usually just stick the hose on it and back flush it whenever I wash the boat.  I have also tried my best to keep that area clean of leaves and other water blocking items, can't reach all the way to the bulkhead but a small vacuum with a long narrow hose and then just kind of sweep back and forth gets most of it.  Nope, that drain is just too far away to drain the water pouring down off the cabin door.  The water will find it's way in before the drain can swallow it all.  I really need to get the door to seal tightly, which is impossible since it has rounded corners.
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