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VOLatile

Winterizing Issues

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VOLatile

I bought my first Malibu late this summer and I have been able to get a lot of enjoyment out of it so far. When I bought it they didn’t say anything about the boat having a heater, but on the day I purchased, I noticed that what turned out to be the heater hoses were disconnected and they told me that they had bypassed the cracked heater core. I wish I had taken a better look at the block. As I was replacing the heater core and adding the wye to help with the idle heat I noticed this “little” blemish to brighten my day.

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This is going to be a very costly lesson. I didn’t do a thorough enough inspection before buying, and should have checked the manifolds and block further when they said the heater core was cracked. I was too caught up in the exitement of buying my first Malibu.

I have put around 40 hours on the boat and haven’t noticed any issues; oil pressure is good, oil has not been milky when i checked, I haven't noticed any excessive water leakage in the area(although I can see where water has been leaking from the crack down to the block drain plug). I am not sure how long ago this was done, as I believe the person I bought the boat from through a dealer was probably the 2nd owner. Any short term success stories with a JB welded block? Am I just SOL? At least I have most of the winter to sit around and be pissed about it instead of being boatless during the summer, right?

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MLA

Its a safe bet that the boat was not properly winterized, resulting in the frozen heater core and engine block. Bypass heater, JB weld the block, put up for sale. Thats a bummer man, Ive seen people weld up external cracks, but dont know how they lasted.

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UofM_MXZ

I would do the same personally. You would spend almost 1/3 to 1/2 of the value just to get new block etc plus labor.

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zone 5

I have seen JB weld and Marine Tec last for multiple years on cracks. (also seen them fail quickly) Surly not the best fix, but clearly a cheap and easy one "IF" it works which yours "seems" to be doing. Lots of blocks that crack outside have also cracked inside. A leak down test on those cylinders will show if there are internal cylinder cracks.

The correct fix is a new block, which may in fact be more expensive then buying a short block. Blocks can be welkded, but it has to be by someone that really knows how. and that too can fail

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Bozboat

You could just run it until it fails, maybe get a couple of years.

Personally the weld would drive me nuts, so I would be compelled to double down and put a new block in her.

Don't beat yourself up about this, just look forward and move forward with a new block and you will be good for a long time.

We all know all about buyer beware, as is, and all that, but it takes a real tool to sell a boat with a chewing gum fix without pointing it out to you.

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CumminsBu

Any freeze plugs looked pushed out or replaced? Put some black paint on it, and run it until it fails. Start saving for a new block, could get many more years out of the one you have.

Edited by CumminsBu

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tvano

if you decide to push this block you will want to keep in mind that murphy says it's going to fail at the worst possible moment.

don't let it put you or your family in jeopardy.

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Baddog

Not on a boat, but back in the late 70's I bought a used Honda Goldwing. Didn't realize unitl it broke down on me heading into the L.A. valley that there had been a crack low down on the gear shift side. JB weld solved that problem for me for many 1,000's of miles. When you are a starving college kid one does what one must. YMMV.

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Hammertime

+1

You could just run it until it fails, maybe get a couple of years.

Personally the weld would drive me nuts, so I would be compelled to double down and put a new block in her.

Don't beat yourself up about this, just look forward and move forward with a new block and you will be good for a long time.

We all know all about buyer beware, as is, and all that, but it takes a real tool to sell a boat with a chewing gum fix without pointing it out to you.

+1, esp on the "don't beat yourself up" part

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nyryan2001

Did you buy this from a dealer or private sale? Who is "they"?

Honestly if it were me and there arent any apprant issues i'd run it till it quits. Thats the only way to minimize the cash outlay damage to your wallet.

You just gott hope that is it starts to have issues... it isnt early-mid boating season. That would be bad.

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oceanbu

My aunt's old boat had a crack in the block in a around the same area if I recall. Boat ran fine. I am guessing the crack didn't go through to the cylinder wall. Had a mechanic look at it and he figured if it runs fine just keep running it based on the fact that it's not like in a car where you will run out of coolant since you have an unlimited supply of cold water from the lake to keep the block from overheating.

If it was me I would run it till she dies and in the meantime start saving for a new block so when it is time you are ready!

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Levi900RR

I'd call the guy you bought it from. Don't act mad, just see what he says. Who knows. Maybe the guy will offer to split to cost with you or something. I doubt it but you never know. People can do the right thing, esp if you give them the chance.

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Woodski

A local has a JB Weld repaired block in his Bu and it has been running for the better part of 10 years that way. If properly repaired and the crack is only on the external surface, you will probably be okay.

As noted by zone5 a leak down test would be a very good idea to see if there is any porosity in the cylinder walls, but, you will have to do it with both the cylinder at TBC and at BDC to make sure there isn't a crack midway down the bore. The engine should also be warm when you do it. Other tell tale signs would be the dreaded chocolate milk looking oil in the pan.

In addition, I would suggest actually grinding off the JB Weld and taking a good look at the crack itself to get a good understanding of how long it is. I would then grind off the paint around the crack, drill a couple of very small holes at the ends of the crack and re apply fresh JB Weld. The purpose of the holes is to keep the crack from extending itself any farther.

Levi makes a good suggestion in giving the previous owner a call, particularly if you go at it specifically to get more information on what happened and why, might give you some insight on best way to proceed or if you need to do anything at all. One question, did the boat originate in SC, I would be surprised that you would get a hard enough freeze to have the block cracked. From the picture, I would certainly be planning a long weekend of engine TLC.

Edited by Woodski

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REHinH20

Ouch, sorry to hear! Having my first used boat, I understand the excitement of the purchase, there were several things that I overlooked knowing they could be a problem. Good news, your family has had "a lot of enjoyment" concentrate on that when you start to stew over the problem. Keep that glass half full!

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VOLatile

Thanks for all of the input. It is pretty aggravating to have all of your boat upgrade funds more than likely going for a new block. I bought the boat at a dealer but as some kind of consignment sale, pretty much the dealer was the middleman to just show the boat and I never had any contact with the actual seller. The dealer was in Charlotte,NC and I believe the seller was from the area as well. I will see what the dealer knew about the cracked block. I will try to do the cylinder leak test and some of the repairs suggested to help stop the crack from spreading more. I think the colder the lake gets the more stress its going to put on the block due to the greater temperature differences, hopefully I can limp on for a while so I can save some money for the day when I have to replace the block.

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Levi900RR

If you picked up that boat AT a dealership I'd call them ASAP. Was the purchase and sales agreement on their letter head? Even if that was a consignment boat they should back it. That is something that should have been disclosed to you prior to the sale.

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4nryde

I bought a project boat 2 years ago with a cracked block. I bought it thinking the engine was a total loss, but the seller didnt disclose the cracked block. The PO sealed up the crack with some JB weld, but the repair was done quickly and poorly. I ground down their jb weld job, drilled some holes in the ends of the crack, ground some fresh material out of the crack, and then applied jb weld again. No signs of my repair failing over the last 2 seasons (knock on wood), when it does fail I will take care of it. Even then if the boat is still running good and my patch fails......I will just fix it again.

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t a

If you picked up that boat AT a dealership I'd call them ASAP. Was the purchase and sales agreement on their letter head? Even if that was a consignment boat they should back it. That is something that should have been disclosed to you prior to the sale.

I agree, I bought my boat on consignment at Waterski America in Dallas and they said they went through everything. They told me "even though this boat is on consignment, you are still buying the boat from US not the individual." I was worried if something big like this happened and they assured me they would have my back. WSA is know as the top dealer in TX for their service so hopefully your dealer will step up too...Luckily they havn't seen my boat since it left their lot 2 1/2 years ago...(knock on wood)

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