Crestliner/Boat Draining Question/Help

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Dungee Fishing

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Came across something a little bit troubling tonight while going through/working on the boat. We got our Crestliner with the vinyl flooring so we could just spray it out right? Its been great, affective and quick way to wash out the boat, but there a couple spots, mainly a couple compartments that don't drain very well. So while I was working on getting these compartments to drain properly (not the main issue) I happened to look down and saw what looked like a collection of water beneath one of the seat pedestal mounts that we don't use... So I take off the pedestal and there is in fact a little pool (about 12ozish) of water in a pocket on top of insulation foam. So this pocket is under the port panel of flooring in the main cockpit area, there are three areas, the middle has the bilge running along the length of the boat with the gas tank, and the two side floor panels have nothing but insulation foam underneath them from what I'm guessing (not sure? have never taken any other panel than the middle out before)?

So my plan now is to pull up both side floor panels, sponge out any remaining water, fill completely with more foam, then seal any leading edge that doesn't go very directly to the bilge!? I also know for a fact now that water isn't just getting in that pocket from the top of the pedestal. Why do I need to do this though? This just seems like a very inconvenient and avoidable problem. Obviously I will continue to spray out the boat (many Crestliners come with a raw water wash down system as well), it rains, water gets in the boat regardless etc. Why is this a problem? Has anyone else ran into a similar problem? Maybe preferably a Crestliner/Lund owner? Water dripping down the gunnels (or any other seam) of a boat shouldn't end up any other place than the bilge!? Maybe I really am just venting/warning others of a similar issue with a their boat? Any input or funny comments are welcomed! Thanks

Preston
 

birdsnest

Well-Known Member
No you are not just venting. Seeing this condition is a red flag. You didn't say how old the boat is but the longer the stringers have seen moisture the more vulnerable the boat is to rot. If the stringers are wood with fiberglass over the wood the water will find it's way to the wood. Without knowing the construction of the boat I can't comment on the potential for rot but I do know you did good finding the problem. Some foam will absorb water so be careful of your choice. Good luck. I have cut up and thrown away two boats because of trapped water in the hull and transom area. It blows my mind that a boat manufacturer overlooks this problem.
 
Preston,

I can share some personal experiences in the hope it may be helpful to you and others.
I have had three different boats that had issues with bad floors and water getting underneath the floors.

All three had similar flaws, mostly due to aging, but also design. The first issue has been around the ski wells, all three boats had similar damage around the edges there. It seems they weren't fiber-glassed at the edge of the opening nor on the underside, or it had worn out? Either way the marine plywood was rotten due to continued water intrusion. When I replaced the floor in my 86 galaxy, I eliminated the ski well to stop this from happening again. It is a fishing boat mostly anyway, so no great loss for me.

The other issue common to all three boats is where they had drilled holes through the floor to spray foam into the cavities. Although they had fiber glassed over these holes, it had given out over time and allowed water into the foam.
In the case of an old 69 Rienell the foam was saturated to the point of adding an estimated 500 to 800 lbs. ( very early "wake boat",ha ha). I let it dry for more than a year in covered storage before I removed the floor, it was still wringing wet. This was the same in both the other boats when the floor was removed. It appears that the foam is capable of soaking up water very readily.

I only replaced the floor in the Galaxy as the others were too far gone and had other issues as well. As I mentioned , the ski well was eliminated, but before I put the floor back, I custom cut Styrofoam blocks to fill the entire underfloor area.
If it is good enough to float the docks without becoming saturated, then it is good enough for me. However someone did mention that it may be a problem if fuel were to get into it. In this case it is sealed with three layers of fiber-glass so water or fuel shouldn't have any means of getting in there. Fuel tank is above the floor and I was very careful to seal any new holes ( seat mounting, etc.) to prevent any water intrusion.

If you can access the foam, just try pushing on it firmly, if it has water in it , you should see it squishing out.
( this isn't fool proof as it may have water below the accessible area)
I sure hope it isn't wet, as it is pretty much necessary to remove the floor to dry it out properly. As for replacing it, the Styrofoam seemed the best choice to me but as it has only been a couple of seasons with it , I can't yet say how it will work over time.

Don't know if any of this will apply to your boat or not but again just wanted to share in case.

FF
 

Dungee Fishing

Well-Known Member
Thank you guys. I went fly fishing up in the Uintas today so I haven't taken the other panel off yet. The boat is a 2014, the stringers are all aluminum so I'm mt worried about that. I really went to town speak f our the boat after our boil trip, this is the first time I've noticed something like this so I don't think water has been sitting in there any longer than a week or so, and the fact that it pooled a bit on top of some foam actually seems like a good sign it wasn't getting soaked in the foam? Anyway, still need to dig and investigate. My new idea now might be put aluminum angles along the leading edges in the cockpit area so it can't drain down the gunnels.
 

wolfman

Member
You have two part spray in foam under the floor , like all aluminum boats. The boat builders put it in to meet flotation regulations. the bad part is after is drilling holes for seats and other items water can enter under the floor. Once the foam gets wet it may never dry out. I restored a 1991 Smokercraft and all the under floor foam was soaked, in some areas the foam blocked water from reaching the bilge. I have seen new boats with the same thing, no thought to proper drainage.
 

Dungee Fishing

Well-Known Member
Thanks wolfman... Update, pulled all the panels of flooring in the cockpit area, three of them. Both spots I was concerned about did have some puddling but there was no other visible areas of concern (still dont have any idea whats on the bottom half of the foam or foam i can yet get to and inspect, like under the back platform). The plan is to still fill any gaps with expansion foam, seal off outside leading edges to non bilge areas. Debating whether or not to dismantle the back platform and check under there? Sound okay except id have the same problem I have now with exposed cockpit area, I really cant see the entire picture anyway i.e. bottom half of foam.
 

wolfman

Member
The foam in boat is closed cell , not the same as Home Depot type expanding foam. That type will absorb water. You can order the closed cell two parts on line but it's a pain to use. I used the closed cell blue foam sheets from HD and cleared a pathway to the bilge from all areas in the boat. The problem with the spray in foam is that it blocks a lot of the ways for water to get to bilge. You can make a hole saw out of one inch PVC pipe to drill test holes in foam. Couple of good websites. tinboats.net and iboat.
 

Dungee Fishing

Well-Known Member
Do not was the can foam. Have you contacted Crestliner?
I haven't, After my personal inspection I'm not nearly as concerned as I initially was... The two spots I could see initially were the only spots with a little bit of water i sponged out. I also do think it was directly related to my vigorous spraying out after our last trip and not a cumulative pooling over the length of the boats life from natural sources (its never sat out in the elements etc). I do plan on checking a couple more areas and using the hole the manufacturer made for the rear seat install to check the very bottom of that level of foam. When i put it back together though i do want to fill and fortify those two areas of concern. My plan was to use the can spray foam but that doesn't sound right now? Any other recommendations?
 

capt.catfish

Well-Known Member
I haven't, After my personal inspection I'm not nearly as concerned as I initially was... The two spots I could see initially were the only spots with a little bit of water i sponged out. I also do think it was directly related to my vigorous spraying out after our last trip and not a cumulative pooling over the length of the boats life from natural sources (its never sat out in the elements etc). I do plan on checking a couple more areas and using the hole the manufacturer made for the rear seat install to check the very bottom of that level of foam. When i put it back together though i do want to fill and fortify those two areas of concern. My plan was to use the can spray foam but that doesn't sound right now? Any other recommendations?
I'd have to see a picture to see exactly what you need to do, but the standard flotation foam is poured liquid urethane expanding foam (2-lb is probably the most common). You can purchase it on Amazon, but depending on how you're going to use it it could be really messy:

https://www.amazon.com/TotalBoat-Urethane-Density-Flotation-Insulation/dp/B01AAP3GVE/ref=sr_1_1

If you're looking for something to seal up a crack or something of that nature, you could look at 5200 Marine adhesive and sealant:

https://www.amazon.com/3M-5200-Adhesive-Sealant-cartridge/dp/B0000AY6AC/ref=sr_1_2

Or some other sealant; just steer clear of standard silicone sealant that isn't specifically approved for use with aluminum; general silicone sealant contains acetic acid and will cause corrosion. There are several alternative sealants, but I haven't used any of them or speak to their suitability.

Any foam will absorb some water; closed cell foam has spaces in between the closed bubbles that water can get into. You start having real problems when you let the foam sit in water, especially in cold climates. Water is the universal solvent and will start breaking down the foam and getting into those closed cells. If it's in an area where there is freezing, the problem is accelerated since every time the water freezes it ruptures more of the closed cells, then thaws and absorbs further into the material, only to refreeze and do more damage. Making sure your foam stays dry now will save you a lot of headache in the future.
 
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