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Bravo 3 moisture, loose drain screw!

Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
Draining both drives today so that service can come and pressure/vacuum test them. I ordered the test pro actively, lube monitors were clean and didn’t drop. Port drained nice and blue, perfect, no concerns. Starboard definitely has moisture in it. It’s barely 40 in here so it’s a little thick. Here is the kicker though, the top air/drain screw plug  on the drive was loose. Zero effort to back it out, in fact with little effort I could screw it in 1/8 turn. I distinctly remember torquing on these screws in the spring so I’m baffled as to how it was loose. New high perform lube and new blue drain screw washers in the spring. 

Given the loose screw, if the vacuum/pressure test comes back good I’m thinking i am good? Thoughts? Bottom screw had almost no metal shavings, just the normal trace amount, no concern.


Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

Comments

  • aero3113aero3113 Long Island, NYPosts: 2,130Member ✭✭✭✭
    If it pressure checks good, maybe flush it good some how then refill.
  • shawnmjrshawnmjr Detroit MIPosts: 1,228Member ✭✭✭✭
    I would replace the screws. Maybe the threads are worn down and thinner than normal allowing it to back out? Not sure if this could happen, but would be cheap to do. 
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Yea I like the idea of buying all new screws, will look in to that. Agree on flushing, what do I use to flush? More lower oil? Hope to have the testing done this week. 
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • Black_DiamondBlack_Diamond Holland, MichiganPosts: 4,422Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    Mineral spirits to flush out. 

    2003 342FV "Black Diamond", 350 MAG MPI, 20P 4x4 Props, PC BYC, Holland, MI
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Thanks. Looking forward to test results this week, hoping that a flush and new screws are all that’s needed. I’d do all 4 screws. 
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDPosts: 4,945Member, Moderator mod
    I change my screws and washers every other year. Cheap insurance.

    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Never even thought about the screws, good to know
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • Cableguy GregCableguy Greg Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 3,764Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    Make sure you change the gasket. It sometimes gets overlooked.
    2008 280 Express Cruiser, 6.2MPI, B3, Pittsburgh, PA
    Go Steelers!!!
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Thanks Greg, I changed the gaskets last spring but this spring I’ll do new screws and gaskets. Just hung up with marina to let them know about the water in the drive and the loose screw, they hope to test this week. Will update! 
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • boatman37boatman37 Posts: 148Member ✭✭
    I replace the gaskets every year but have never replaced the screws
  • zaverin1zaverin1 Saint Clair Shores,MIPosts: 1,435Member ✭✭✭
    Gaskets every year 
    screws only if there is a need. Drain screws get chewed up over time 
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    zaverin1 said:
    Gaskets every year 
    screws only if there is a need. Drain screws get chewed up over time 
    Zav, I know the heads of the screws get chewed but do the threads? Making them less likely to hold tight?
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • zaverin1zaverin1 Saint Clair Shores,MIPosts: 1,435Member ✭✭✭
    Look at it this way.
    yes everything gets damaged and worn out over time.
    i would also inspect the condition of the threads inside the drives.


  • zaverin1zaverin1 Saint Clair Shores,MIPosts: 1,435Member ✭✭✭
    But in reality it’s very uncommon for stretches or blown threads.
  • raybo3raybo3 Revere MAPosts: 3,950Moderator mod
    Try putting a torque stripe on them. Then when the boat comes out of the water you will know if they are getting lose..........
    2002 342 Fiesta Vee PC Point Of Pines YC Revere MA. popyc.org
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Good ideas, thought about a thread sealer but not sure that there is something that will take the heat of the drives and the lube. Don’t see anything reccomended 
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDPosts: 4,945Member, Moderator mod
    I had problems with one of my drain plugs when I first bought my current boat.  The head on it got stripped and it wouldn't come off.  I bought a cheap harbor freight hammer driver.  I now use it every year and never have a problem with it stripping.

    https://www.harborfreight.com/impact-screwdriver-set-with-case-37530.html 

    Note that I do mine while on a floating raft with boat on the lift.  This does make it a bit more difficult to get a firm stance while using a regular screwdriver to remove the plug.  (for those environmentalists, no, I do not let any oil go in the water.  I can actually do both drives at the same time now)

    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Update: Vacuum & Pressure tests came back good. The drive with moisture held pressure for over 4 hours, they left the good drive overnight. All good. So I think that I am ok.
    I plan to flush the drive that had moisture with a quart of new LU oil. I plan to clean out the lube monitor, and then pour a quart of lube in the lube monitor and let it flow right out the bottom of the drive. This should flush out any remaining moisture. Then re fill both drives. Already ordered 4 new merc oem plug screws and gaskets for both drives, $30 delivered, not bad! Thanks! 
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • reneechris14reneechris14 Pawcatuck river CTPosts: 1,761Member ✭✭✭✭
    Sounds good you are getting closer to spring I mean launch
    2005 Rinker FV342  Pawcatuck river,Ct
  • J3ffJ3ff Posts: 1,740Member ✭✭✭✭
    Update: Vacuum & Pressure tests came back good. The drive with moisture held pressure for over 4 hours, they left the good drive overnight. All good. So I think that I am ok.
    I plan to flush the drive that had moisture with a quart of new LU oil. I plan to clean out the lube monitor, and then pour a quart of lube in the lube monitor and let it flow right out the bottom of the drive. This should flush out any remaining moisture. Then re fill both drives. Already ordered 4 new merc oem plug screws and gaskets for both drives, $30 delivered, not bad! Thanks! 
    Hey there, where'd you get them for that price? I also have found moisture in the drive and ended up with a completely empty lube resivour end of season last season. Figure I'll ask them to pressure test mine as well.. and then put some new screws in this year.. 
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Hey Jeff here ya go:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Mercury-Marine-Mercruiser-New-OEM-Magnetic-Gear-Case-Drain-Screw-22-8M0058389/401021962357?pageci=861a251b-f6e9-48d7-a13b-f125f70d216c&epid=1237712985

    Amazon had the sierra for the same price for 4 delivered and I’m fine with Sierra but figured I’d go with oem for the same price 


    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • randy56randy56 Newburgh INPosts: 2,427Member ✭✭✭✭
    As we move into spring start up many places have sent discount e-mails. this company i have purchased from before with great prices and results. They are offering a 5% discount at this time. On there parts. You may want to hang onto the link for the future. 

    https://www.dbelectrical.com/tilttrim_marine_discount/?utm_source=DBElectrical.com+Subscribers-MC&utm_campaign=677d307ec3-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_03_01_05_23&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_71e4da393d-677d307ec3-69143971&mc_cid=677d307ec3&mc_eid=4bd276fad0
    Boat Name : Knot My Prolem

    2003 - 270
  • J3ffJ3ff Posts: 1,740Member ✭✭✭✭
    Hey Jeff here ya go:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Mercury-Marine-Mercruiser-New-OEM-Magnetic-Gear-Case-Drain-Screw-22-8M0058389/401021962357?pageci=861a251b-f6e9-48d7-a13b-f125f70d216c&epid=1237712985

    Amazon had the sierra for the same price for 4 delivered and I’m fine with Sierra but figured I’d go with oem for the same price 


    Thanks to both of you - hmm, so the screws are the same for top and bottom of the drive 
  • rasburyrasbury Sanford, FLPosts: 4,720Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yes they are Jeff..
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Made it back to the boat this weekend. Plan was to dump a quart of new lube in to the lube monitor and have it drain back through the drive and out the bottom to flush any remaining moisture. But, it wouldn't drain. No good reason why other than I assume a clog. Between the sludge, pressure test, and moisture who knows. 

    Removing the lube monitor to clean was shockingly easy. Remove the strap, and then pull the hose from the barb. The wires pull out of small connections easily. Took home and thoroughly cleaned with mineral spirits, was surprised about how crappy it was down there. Spirits now flow smoothly out the bottom of them. I was able to blow air cleanly from the end of the monitor hose down through the drive so I think I got whatever was stopping the lube from draining. Ended up pumping a quart in to the top vent hole on the drive and letting it flow back out the bottom to flush, all clear, ready to fill Saturday. 

    Should I use a little dielectric grease when reconnecting the wires?
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • zaverin1zaverin1 Saint Clair Shores,MIPosts: 1,435Member ✭✭✭
    No need unless you see corrosion 
    those tanks should be cleaned once every two seasons 
  • Dream_InnDream_Inn Annapolis, MDPosts: 4,945Member, Moderator mod
    Liberty, I think you will be fine just reconnecting.  I've connected/reconnected a couple times there.  I remove mine each fall and clean it out.  Doing it yearly makes it a simple task, not much gunk in a year.

    Dream 'Inn III -- 2008 400 Express

  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    Thanks guys, definitely will be adding this to the maintenance schedule. I thought I was getting most of the gunk with a screw driver and paper towel but I certainly was not. 
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

  • rasburyrasbury Sanford, FLPosts: 4,720Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    I replaced mine after a "failed" cleaning...I thought the fitting on the bottom unscrewed...well it does not...
  • Liberty44140Liberty44140 Bay Village & Marblehead, OH.Posts: 2,012Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited 6:05PM
    Yea I thought the same, I twisted the large nut about 1/4 turn and realized it does not un thread and put it back. I don’t think I jeoprosized the seal, mineral spirits didn’t drip. How far did you go Ras? 
    Post edited by Liberty44140 at
    Wine-N-Down -- 2006 342 Express Cruiser

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