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Olfster

Livewell not draining

24 posts in this topic

Was wondering if anyone could tell me the correct way a Crestliner fish hawk livewell should operate. My live well does not drain fast at all. It takes about 24 hours or more to drain. My first thought was that it is plugged. Using an air hose, at very low pressure, I gave it a couple blasts of air with no result. I then approached it from the other end, at the transom, and the air blew through very strong. My next thought was that there is a check valve of some sort in there, but wouldn't it be backwards for correct operation? Water should flow out not in. Any thought would be appreciated.

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I have basically the same problem.... I have forced water through it and air through the line so I know there isn't an obstruction... my thought is a small hole in the drain hose that is eliminating the suction or vacuum that draws the water out. Is that a possible scenario?

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probably a minnow or something else stuck in there, Like coach said just use a airhose or water and it should push it out!

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I would be inclined to think a pin hole wouldn't be the culprit because the line is at least 1/2 inch diameter and with the water level being well above the drain exit, at the transom, flow should be pretty strong unless obstructed. For my situation air blasts from the transom come out the livewell drain strong and fast, not the case going the other way.

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Like I said. I have the same problem...my livewell basically trickles out. I have forced water and air through and it comes out just fine when forced, so I'm not sure what the problem is.....hopefully someone can help us out.....

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what sort of plane are you draining it on? how high is the well above the drain? i would guesss a slight kink, stuck minnow, boat leaning down hill or too small of hose

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Coach, It sounds like the exact same problem. Is your boat a Crestliner? Leads me to wonder if there really is some sort of check valve in the line that may have been put in backwards. The ease of air going one way and not the other seems to support that there is. I don't know the intricacies of putting together a livewell, I have never done it before, but as far as the drain I can't see it being anything more than a straight line out the transom.

broken_line, you bring up a good point about a possible kink in the line. The water level for my livewell is well above the drain exit at the transom. I suppose I may have to take up the floor to really investigate and solve the problem.

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Does it drain through the pump, or does it drain out of the boat through a different location?

It could be (and likely is) a kinked hose.

marine_man

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Well... I have a 1991 Alumacraft. My livewell has three hoses running to it from the back of the boat. All run pretty much in a straight line. To the top of my livewell run the intake hose and the vent pipe. On the bottom is the drain hose/line. When using a pressure washer and forcing water into the drain hole in the livewell, the water runs out like it used too/is supposed to. Same with the air. But if I just fill it and let it drain, even with the front end raised it takes all of a day for it to drain. The only way to get at the hose would be to take out about a 2 foot wide x 2 foot long x 2 foot deep glob of the flotation foam that is sprayed in the boat, so I'm not sure where to go at this point.

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So what you are basicly saying is you livewells are unusable. The law's as I understand it, you can not have water in your livewell when you leave the lake.

Mabe you are looking at the wrong hose. Are your vent and fill hoses clear? It sounds like you may have a vacume. Try filling it and opening the lid.

Just a thought....

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As far as the vacuum.... it doesn't matter if the door is open or closed....I used to be able to un plug the live well before heading to the landing and by the time I got there, she would be empty--except for all the fish of course smile Now I can't get it do drain. The hoses are pretty easy to distinguish, so I know looking at the wrong hose isn't the problem. I had thought about the plumbers snake, but I wondering if they make one small enough??

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I have a plumber's snake that has 1/4" cable with a 1/2" coil on the end. You could snip the coil down in size if that's too big. I bet the hardware store has a cheap one that would work. I'd be careful not to be too forceful.

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blow air through the drain in the live well if you havnt done so already.. there has to be a clog somewhere if it workd normally before. another thing a jig, wasp nest er something or pinched hose.. a long stiff piece of wire with a shot gun brush would work also..

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From my experience working at a boat factory my first thoughts would be, pinched hose or excess hose causing a high spot in the line. Although this doesn't explain the difference in air pressure you guys talk about blowing air from transon vs from livewell. If there is a valve, it should be accessable from a access plate. If you don't see one, it probably isn't there.

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I have forced water and air through and it comes out just fine when forced, so I'm not sure what the problem is.....hopefully someone can help us out.....

If it used to work fine and now it doesn't it's almost got to be something stuck that came from the drain.

A kinked hose isn't something that would show up all of a sudden.

marine_man

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I'll bet there is a rotting minnow stuck in it smile and when it comes out you will know, ha! That happened to us years ago. I blew into the livewell with air hose, while my Dad or Brother, can't recall, was feeling for air to come out the drain... nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing... then BAM! a rotting little sucker came shooting out into his hand... talk about stinky ha smile

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A minnow or other obstruction can act like a check valve that will restrict the flow out the drain. Usually where the drain line connects to the outlet on the transom the connector will fit inside the line. This reduces the inside diameter and when an object that fits in the line comes to the smaller diameter connector it stops and plugs the line. Blowing air backwards in the line moves the obstruction back into the larger line and the air can easily flow past. I have had better luck back flushing the drain line with water than air. I have removed multiple minnows back flushing with a garden hose. Just make sure to close the livewell lid before back flushing or everything that comes out will end up in your boat.

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Well.... I've tried blowing air through both directions...using a pressure washer to force water through in both directions....i have also run some heavy guage wire through as well and I still have the same issues! I think my next step is the snake or maybe a wire brush on the end of the heavy guage wire and see what happens..... thanks for all the help..... I keep praying for a minnow or something to come shooting out!

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FunFish, that is a good point I did not think about. A narrowing in the hose would cause what appeared to me to be a "check valve" effect. That is probably what it is, an obstruction bunching at the narrowing of the line. I will definitely try your recommendation and post back.

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Back flushing worked! Thanks for the suggestion to use water FunFish. Cleared it out. The line must narrow up or be slightly pinched somewhere. At least now it drains fast enough to empty before leaving the launch. Thanks again for the suggestions.

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Was it the stinky minnow? smile I bet it was!!! Ha, seen that one more than once! Shiners are the worst! ha!

Glad you got it out.

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No, actually I started salmon fishing last year, and the scales from the coho fall off and get all over the place. When I back flushed it the live well filled up with the water and tons of coho scales. For now on, after salmon fishing, I will have to scoop the water out instead of draining it. So not a stinky minnow, but stinky coho scales.

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