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Updated: 03/13/2014 02:59:22PM

Clean boat, happy boat

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mechanical mojo • tony towns

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Part of boat maintenance is keeping it clean and making sure the bilge areas, cockpit, floor scuppers, drains, overboard drains and splash wells are free of debris. This may seem like common sense, but far too often we see all the above clogged with leaves, pine needles, bottle caps, plastic bags, pieces of wire , hair ties, fish hooks, etc. You get the idea.

It may not seem that important, but debris can flood your boat. Bilge pump screens that are dirty and clogged will make the pump much less efficient and could lead to failure. Also, food debris left on the vessel can lead to rodent infestation. Once those little rodents get done eating the food left behind, they start eating your wires! Why? I guess they like how wire insulation tastes. No, not really, they just need to chew something to wear their teeth down or they grow out of their mouth. They also love to get into your life jackets. So, if nothing else, it is a good idea to do a couple good cleanouts a year, depending on use or non-use.

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