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Dreaded HDS Leak


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Hey guys, I need something explained in layman’s terms. What the heck does HDS stand for and why is it referred to as the “dreaded HDS leak”?

The amount of water my boat pees out is getting on my nerves. I know I need to repack my drive shaft but even when I’m sitting still in the water for hours my bilge will still come on.

I have searched the forums but can’t find anything that explains what HDS is.

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Hey guys, I need something explained in layman’s terms. What the heck does HDS stand for and why is it referred to as the “dreaded HDS leak”?

The amount of water my boat pees out is getting on my nerves. I know I need to repack my drive shaft but even when I’m sitting still in the water for hours my bilge will still come on.

I have searched the forums but can’t find anything that explains what HDS is.

Hydrophonic Dampening System. It's on Direct Drives only. If you open the area behind the engine box between the mufflers (usually) you will see a box. When you are in the water, this box fills with water (hypdrophonic). It's stated purpose is to reduce vibration and noise (dampening). The purpose and existence of the box is open for much debate.

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The HDS is the "Achilles heel" of Malibu DDs. It is about a $1500 repair and has to be done right for a permanent fix. You need to fix yours as soon as possible or you will start going through steering cables and starters, plus it is just a pain having a leaky boat. :cry:

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I would say most HDS problems start with an underwater hit.

If your packing is that bad it can leak without the shaft turning.

-Chris

Plus1.gif make sure that the shaft packing is not the problem before messing w the hds.

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The steering cable starter have both been replaced. Whether that was related to the HDS I don't know.

The link provided by martinarcher looks like something I can do myself so that will save big bucks.

Yes, I do need to take care of the packing first but I don't have wrenches big enough for the nuts on the drive shaft. Annoying. I guess I need to compare the repair cost to that of buying the parts/tools and doing it myself.

I was on a Boy Scout weekend ski trip with my son last year. The boat was beached overnight. About every hour or so the bilge came on...kept me up most of the night. What I need to do is sit in the water and watch specifically for where the water is coming from.

Thanks for the advice everyone. At least I now know what the HDS is and what to do about it.

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martinarcher

The steering cable starter have both been replaced. Whether that was related to the HDS I don't know.

The link provided by martinarcher looks like something I can do myself so that will save big bucks.

Yes, I do need to take care of the packing first but I don't have wrenches big enough for the nuts on the drive shaft. Annoying. I guess I need to compare the repair cost to that of buying the parts/tools and doing it myself.

I was on a Boy Scout weekend ski trip with my son last year. The boat was beached overnight. About every hour or so the bilge came on...kept me up most of the night. What I need to do is sit in the water and watch specifically for where the water is coming from.

Thanks for the advice everyone. At least I now know what the HDS is and what to do about it.

When the boat leaks like that it can be a bit nerve racking if it is sleeping on the water. Let us know what you find out.

I always think if I buy the parts and tools I need to do the job, I only ever have to pay once. I can then do it myself as many times as needed over th life of the car/boat and I can also help others out after I learn how to do it.

Let us know what you find.

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Hey guys, I need something explained in layman’s terms. What the heck does HDS stand for and why is it referred to as the “dreaded HDS leak”?

The amount of water my boat pees out is getting on my nerves. I know I need to repack my drive shaft but even when I’m sitting still in the water for hours my bilge will still come on.

I have searched the forums but can’t find anything that explains what HDS is.

Ditch the HDS. I had a shaft log installed in my Malibu Sunsetter LX and it's just as quiet or maybe even quieter. But most importantly, IT's DRY every time we pull the boat out of the water.

shaftlog.jpg

shaftlog2.jpg

shaftlog3.jpg

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Ditch the HDS. I had a shaft log installed in my Malibu Sunsetter LX and it's just as quiet or maybe even quieter. But most importantly, IT's DRY every time we pull the boat out of the water.

Pics are worth a thousand words. Of the 3 pics you posted exactly where was the water coming in from?

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See in the top pic the stuff that looks like caulking above and below the hose clamp? That is the joint between the HDS and the hull. That joint goes all the way around the inside of the "BOX" that has the plastic lid on it. The way a dealer would fix it is to remove the cover, use a grinder and clean that joint all the way around, and then seal it with whatever Malibu sends them for the repair. They did my '99LXI and it was good for the next year before I sold it...

My '99 started leaking in about 2002. Fixed late 2002, sold late 2003. I never hit anything that I knew of.

Patrick

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Ditch the HDS. I had a shaft log installed in my Malibu Sunsetter LX and it's just as quiet or maybe even quieter. But most importantly, IT's DRY every time we pull the boat out of the water.

shaftlog.jpg

shaftlog2.jpg

shaftlog3.jpg

Bob, where did you get the shaft log?? Pre-fabricated?? Great idea!

(Glad I have a VD though!)

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See in the top pic the stuff that looks like caulking above and below the hose clamp? That is the joint between the HDS and the hull. That joint goes all the way around the inside of the "BOX" that has the plastic lid on it. The way a dealer would fix it is to remove the cover, use a grinder and clean that joint all the way around, and then seal it with whatever Malibu sends them for the repair. They did my '99LXI and it was good for the next year before I sold it...

My '99 started leaking in about 2002. Fixed late 2002, sold late 2003. I never hit anything that I knew of.

Patrick

Some of them were laid up badly for sure and leak.

But alot of them leak after a trip up onto the rocks.

Easy way to find an HDS leak is to pull off the cover and fill the boat with water below the level of the shaft seal. Typically they leak from the back of the box (toward the stern).

-Chris

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Some of them were laid up badly for sure and leak.

But alot of them leak after a trip up onto the rocks.

Easy way to find an HDS leak is to pull off the cover and fill the boat with water below the level of the shaft seal. Typically they leak from the back of the box (toward the stern).

-Chris

I'm quite sure a trip down a bumpy road on the trailer could help it along...

I diagnosed mine by filling up the bilge almost to the carpet and it came pouring out the shaft hole.

Took it to the dealer and it got fixed under warranty.

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