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Old 10-02-2015, 08:27 PM   #1
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Default Are my winterization steps good for my 2003 4.3 MC engine?

I live in Leadville, CO. This boat only goes in fresh water high mountain reservoirs. The engine is a 4.3 LITRE Thunderbolt V ignition Mercruiser. I a m sick of driving 40 miles one way and paying $200 for winterization which is what the only boat repair shop in my area charges. I made it a mission of mine to learn how to do this myself this year. I am not mechanically inclined so it has scared me off for years. So…. After looking at all kinds of steps and instructions I have made this list with the help of posts from this site. I store my boat in a garage non heated. I live in a below zero degrees environment at certain times of the winter. Can you guys let me know what you think? Thanks!!

Winterization steps for 2003 bayliner runabout 4.3 liter Mercruiser
1. Add gas stabilizer to tank and top off
2. Install ear muffs to outdrive with hose.
3. Turn on water and start engine. Let run until temp guage is reading normal or 30 minutes to be 100% safe. (t-stat is open) This allows good flushing of the engine.
4. Turn off engine and water.
5. Change oil, oil filter with pump,(gas filter, and out-drive lube) optional?
6. Turn water back on and start engine. Check for leaks.
7. Turn off engine and water.
8. Locate all drain plugs on engine and remove. There are 5 blue butterfly plugs on the 2003 bayliner
9. Disconnect all hoses from t-stat housing and pour antifreeze into each util see coming out drains.
10. Install all drain plugs.
11. Remove hose from ear muffs and hook up hose to sub pump.
12. Reinstall hoses to t-stat.
13. fill a 5 gallon bucket with 4 gallons of RV AF. Drop Subpump with garden house connected to muffs connected to water intake on motor. Have 2+ gallons at the ready for adding more.
14. Turn on the pump, then start the engine. have someone hold ear muffs semi tight to conserve AF. (You will also need to keep an eye on the volume in the bucket and start taking those spare gallons you opened ahead of time and start pouring more AF into the bucket. Make sure the bucket doesn't run dry.)
15. Verify antifreeze is coming out 2 side ports at transom assy on outside.
16. Spray fogging oil into carb.
17. Turn off engine. Besure to reach this step before tank runs out of antifreeze.
18. Engine is now done. Clean up.
19. disconnect and remove batteries. Store in warm area
20. Clean boat. Vacume, armour all all vinyl, clean windows
21. Cover boat losely with boat cover
22. Store in non-heated garage
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Old 10-02-2015, 08:51 PM   #2
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First welcome aboard.

I recommend that you do change the gas filter and gear lube, changing the lube allows you to inspect the old lube for signs of water which means a seal issue. Water/lube left in over winter will corrirode the gears.

After removing the drain plugs you may need to insert a small wire or screw driver to unplug the drains.

Do not use alcohol based antifreeze, I recommend one that is not just for water systems (RV) but also has corresion inhibitors.
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Old 10-02-2015, 09:26 PM   #3
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Thanks so much for the welcome and the extra steps! besides what you wrote(and I did add in to my list) do you think I should be covered?
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Old 10-03-2015, 01:10 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acoustic5679 View Post
Thanks so much for the welcome and the extra steps! besides what you wrote(and I did add in to my list) do you think I should be covered?

You got it covered regarding the engine, drive, and cleaning the boat however you did not state what model you have so I do not know if it has a head or fresh water system that would also need to be winterized.
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Old 10-03-2015, 02:14 PM   #5
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Its a 18 foot bayliner run about. No fresh water system.
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Old 10-03-2015, 02:28 PM   #6
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There are many opinions on winter handling of batteries.

Personally, I have (since 1990) always made sure the batteries were fully charged before leaving them on the boat for the winter. I always remove the neg. connection from each battery and protect them in a poly bag (to ensure no chance of them touching anything).

When I check the batteries the following April, they are usually between 95% and 97% of the original full charge. Cold batteries barely lose any charge over the winter, whereas warm batteries do.
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Old 10-05-2015, 02:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acoustic5679 View Post
8. Locate all drain plugs on engine and remove. There are 5 blue butterfly plugs on the 2003 bayliner
It only matters the year, make, model of the engine, not the boat it is installed in. It's still a 2003 Mercruiser 4.3 whether its in a Bayliner, Searay, or Maxum.

I'd pull the freeze plugs at the end to be safe. I agree with Mike, change the drive lube during decommissioning. If there are any deck drains, then pour some propylene glycol down them too. Water can collect in the elbows or if there is a dip in the line. I'd also disconnect the bilge pump discharge hose. If there is a check valve on the discharge line, it's holding water as well.
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