Saturday, 29 August 2009

The Lady of the Leak

Last Saturday Susan from NB Portland Bill came in to the shop asking me to go down and have a look at the list on her boat. I was in the middle of other jobs and could not go straight away. She was a bit concerned so I said that I would pop down after work to have a look at it.

She was moored 300 yards south of Banbury lock. I found it quiet easily as it was the boat with the 30ยบ list to port! I was amazed that she still had belongings on her shelves. Water had filled her bilges causing the list.

The water in her bilges was clean so I started looking for at the water tank for problems. I found it straight away. The domestic water pump had not been installed properly and water was pouring out (It had been fitted by a friendly boater who was passing by), so I fixed the leaks.

I was concerned about Susan staying on the boat in that condition, but Susan (cool as a cucumber) explained that her last boat also had a list so she was used to it, and anyway her bed was on the port side so she could not roll out. So we arranged to bring the boat to the boat yard on Monday to pump the water out.

On Monday, I looked at the floor and found that the internal wood lining of the boat had been built on top of the floor (which is common) so I could not lift the floor up. I found the lowest point on the floor at the back near the stove and drilled some holes in the floorboards. I put and electric pump in and left it pumping out for an hour. We are now on the case for getting the rest of the water out.

A good tip for any boaters is to make sure that you have inspection hatches so that you can check your bilges and try and keep them dry as possible. Also if you hear your water pump coming on when you are not using it – then it’s worth getting the system checked out for leaks.

Matt A

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