Saturday 28 June 2014

Water, water everywhere..... but not a lot in the engine!

Hi all,
We're back on AmyJo again preparing for the royal visit tomorrow (mother-in-law's inspection).  Today should have been straight forward run.  We checked with the Mooorings Pub that it was still OK to use their disabled facilities and mooring for tomorrow then upped sticks at 10am and moved AmyJo onto the fuelling point for a much needed pump out.

All was well until we started to leave the marina when the engine buzzer alarm sounded and the high temperature light came on just as we got to the marina entrance.  We managed to quickly moor up and found the temperature gauge reading 200c!  This did not look good at all.

We let the engine cool whilst having brew and consulted the engine maintenance guide.  I realised only two things could be the problem.  Either low coolant water level or a failed water pump.  Being the optimist I ruled the latter out and sure enough when I opened the filler cap the header tank was bone dry.  8 pints of water later we ran the engine for 5 minutes and checked again.  4 more pints later and again we ran the engine and all settled down with the temperature holding at the usual 140C.

Whilst all this was going on AmyJo had recruited another crew member who was happy to keep a look out for us

This young duck kept a good look out for us
She sat there throughout whilst we sorted the engine and only left once we started to get ready to leave.  Now we're a bit non plus'd as to where all the cooling water has gone.  I checked the hoses and they are all dry, I checked the engine bay bilge and the inner bilge and they too ae dry.  I then checked the oil and there is no indication of water in that, so I simply have no idea where 12 pints of water could have gone.

We cruised down to Watford locks and winded and then returned only meeting one boat on the return trip in the Crick boat wash (tunnel) all the while keeping a close eye on the temperature guage.  We are now moored opposite the Moorings pub ready to receive our inspection party tomorrow.  AmyJo has been tidied and hovered through so hopefully she'll pass muster.  Before moving off 'llI re-check the water level again.

Not many photos today as there has been more water falling from the sky than in our engine.

Once moored Chris and I had a dry run (scuse the pun) with a chair and believe we have now worked out a good way to transfer Mary aboard.  As you can see from the photo above the bank drops on the right and we figure if we can moor with the cratch at this point getting Mary aboard should work fairly easy.   We'll see how it goes tomorrow, photos and all.   We'll lunch in the pub then when they all arrive with Mary then, once aboard, the plan is to cruise up to Cracks hill winding hole or even bridge 28 winding hole depending how the inspection party cope and if the weather improves, then return to disembark.


George and Sue said...

Hi Both,
Sorry to read about the coolant loss, you should check the calorifier and the cabin bilge. 12 pints is a lot to lose, it has to have gone somewhere.
Hope that it isn't serious.

Paul and El said...

That is a bloody lot of water to lose, if you cant physically see any water loss then it can only be the calorifier. The exhaust manifold is also water cooled but it would unlikely be that. You will have to find the leak before you do some serious engine damage.
Have fun

nb AmyJo said...

Hi George and Sue, Paul and Elaine.

Fortunately the water level has remained constant after our cruise today so hopefully all is well. We have run off water through the hot taps and there is no sign of tainted water there and pressure on the accumulator is constant so can only assume the calorifier is OK. We'll be keeping a very close eye on the levels from now on.