03-07-2015, 10:39 AM #1
Freshwater machine in salt water - preventative maintenance?
Hey everyone...haven't been around in a while.
We are contemplating taking our skis with us to South Carolina (week long beach house vacation) the last week of April. These are two older machines which have never seen salt water in their lives having spent all their time on the Great Lakes and the million other lakes up here.
So so is there anything in particular I should do before, during, or after riding? I plan to hose them down top and bottom after every ride but would like to know anything else specific to keep in mind in this scenario. I figure I'm probably overthinking it but want to make sure - I know salt water ops can be hard on watercraft and would like to minimize any long term effects.
03-08-2015, 06:28 AM #2
Just flush them after each ride and hose off the exterior. If you want to go crazy, you buy some spray bottle Salt Away and use it in the engine compartment but if the skis are going back to fresh water after a week, I wouldn't bother.
03-14-2015, 07:47 AM #3
Fluid film is also cheap insurance against salt.
03-14-2015, 08:47 AM #4
Thanks guys, I forgot to come back to this thread after the first reply.
It's mainly the metal and inside gear (engine and hardware etc) that I'm concerned about. I've seen what salt exposure can do to the exterior metal hardware (pump/impeller, nozzle, etc)..and although I know it's only a week I'm just wondering if being older machines they'll suffer some sort of accelerated issues.
My seat seals are not great on either machine anymore either, so It's safe to assume that I'm going to get saltwater in the engine compartments as well. I'm familiar with fluid film (although I'm not sure I've ever seen it for sale on this side of the border) but have never heard of salt away - it it commonly available (and where?) on the ocean states?
03-14-2015, 09:55 AM #5
- Join Date
- Jul 2007
- near Toronto, Canada
Salt Away should be commonly available in marine supply shops in coastal areas. There are some alternative products. I think some guys use Dawn dishwashing soap for salt water cooling system flushing. Dawn brand in particular has a unique chemistry.
Fluid Film can be ordered online and/or imported. It may be available on store shelves in the area you are traveling to.
There are alternative protectant products. CRC makes an effective aerosol protectant product, but I forget which product code.
I may have a spare can of Fluid Film here in Toronto, need to check my garage shelf. Might even have some Salt Away here too
Fluid Film goes on somewhat thickly and remains 'wet' long term with a slightly milky yellowish tint. It does protect well but some people don't like the 'look' of the protected surfaces. Personally I prefer the protection and am not bothered by the film presence.
When it comes to time to show off the engine compartment or sell the watercraft you can wash the Fluid Film off using hot water and standard degreaser/cleaner product.
03-14-2015, 10:09 AM #6
Sounds good, thanks for the info...yes, I don't care about the appearance in the short term, I care about the appearance in the long term. I soak the engines and such on both machines with silicone spray when winterizing to provide a bit of a barrier, expel moisture, and provide some corrosion protection for the winter months (it also lubricates and protects rubber nicely)...but I know it washes off easily once water starts to spray around so I figured it'd be useless for protecting against the salt water.
Where we're staying in SC sounds like a popular boating area so I would expect to be able to find a marina or boat supply store of some sort reasonably easy so I can pickup some down there I'm hoping.
Gotta get the machines out of storage early this year and get them (and the trailer) ready for the long trip south.
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