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Shlbyntro

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Blown engine due to fuel injection.

The 310 SeaRay that these belong to has gone through 3 engines in the last 4 years because the previous shop failed to diagnose the root problem with on the previous 2 engines, 2 fuel injectors with the drip.

A carbureted engine would never have this problem.
20210309_205252.jpg
 

rrrr

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So they hydrolocked?
 

Shlbyntro

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This one washed the rings and 2 cylinders ate themselves. Oil filter was filled with sludge that more closely resembled antiseize.

Aside from operator error, this is the number one most common type of engine failure I see. An otherwise healthy engine destroyed by its own fuel injection. On this boat, 3 engines presumably by the same 2 fuel injectors :(
 
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farmo83

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How often do you recommend servicing injectors ?

P.S. You should go drink all of your neighbors beer this up coming week !
 

Shlbyntro

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I wouldnt put any specific time frame on it but would say: any time contamination is found in the fuel(which should be checked annually), any time a fuel pump has to be replaced for any reason, any time a tuneup shows an uneven fuel burn (which should be performed at least every other year), or any time the intake comes off of the motor which would include valve jobs, engine replacement, etc.
 

Shlbyntro

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Don't blame the lack of proper maintenance maintenance on the EFI. A bad needle/seat or stuck float, or piece of debris in a jet can kill a carbed motor as well

It can turn one off yes, but i have yet to see it allow the operator to continue to run the engine not knowing of any problem at all until the engine is absolutely toasted. That is a problem only caused by fuel injection.

Carbureted motors let you know when they're not happy. Problems with fuel injection often goes undetected until it is too late.

So ya, I do blame fuel injection. The credit is well deserved IMHO
 

lakemadness

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Completely agree that a carbed motor can work very well. But I will take modern fuel injection and perform maintenance over a carbed engine every day and twice on Sunday.
 

PDQH2O

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Injector cleaning is critical for an EFI motor. Happen to know an awesome injector service shop if needed, and very reasonable. PM me for contact info.
 

Shlbyntro

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This. It's not the fuel injection. It's the mechanic

I think the term "idiot proof" comes into play. Fuel injection is not that, and there are not enough quality mechanics out there to catch it. At what point is higher maintenance worth it to make sure that you don't blow up your engine??

You are always having to helicopter over your engine to make sure its safe, wouldnt you just rather have something that won't run if there's something wrong?

I would.
 

SBMech

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I think the term "idiot proof" comes into play. Fuel injection is not that, and there are not enough quality mechanics out there to catch it. At what point is higher maintenance worth it to make sure that you don't blow up your engine??

You are always having to helicopter over your engine to make sure its safe, wouldnt you just rather have something that won't run if there's something wrong?

I would.

By the time it washed the cylinder walls down it was only running on 6 cylinders. It would not even fire if the injector was spraying that poorly.

%100 operator error.
 

Shlbyntro

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By the time it washed the cylinder walls down it was only running on 6 cylinders. It would not even fire if the injector was spraying that poorly.

%100 operator error.
It is not detectable as an operator until it is too late. Especially in a big twin application
 

mesquito_creek

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It is not detectable as an operator until it is too late. Especially in a big twin application

Curious what you mean by this and the part "Especially in a big twin application"... educate me... My twin engine SeaRay 290 with Merc 350/Alphas will show its uglyness of 12K lbs with even the slightest of loss of power. If I was down a cylinder it would show its power loss out of the hole instantly. I have had a water pump bearing go south and the extra drag on a single motor is easy to raise a red flag. I would guess a loaded down 310 even with big blocks and bravos isn't a rocket ship out of the hole...
 

Shlbyntro

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Because there isn't a noticeable loss of power until after the damage has been done. Maybe, somebody with the most sensitive attention to detail MIGHT notice it. But the average boater, as time has proven over and over again will not.

I get at least 5 a year with this kind of failure, its never a carbureted motor
 

LazyLavey

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Because there isn't a noticeable loss of power until after the damage has been done. Maybe, somebody with the most sensitive attention to detail MIGHT notice it. But the average boater, as time has proven over and over again will not.

I get at least 5 a year with this kind of failure, its never a carbureted motor
Chemical treatment preventative?
 

JUSTWANNARACE

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I wouldnt blame it on the EFI, I'd blame it on the shitty fuel the owner buys and the lack of preventative additives to the shitty fuel they buy! Especially if the buy fuel at a marina!

The reason you see more of this with efi is because people believe its "ok" since most efi is considered a "sealed" fuel system(lack of air prevents ethanol from gelling) but dont realize that the moisture in the fuel will kill an injector quicker than the ethanol!! That is why alot of manufacturers have gone to a nikasil bore instead of a steel sleeve. A little more forgiving in most cases

People that own carb motors know they need to maintain the fuel to keep the carb from gelling as it's an open air system!
 

4Waters

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The average person isn't going to notice there is a problem, most of us on here are not average, I always listen to how it cranks to see if a cylinder is low I can feel misfires, I listen for detonation and look for excessive soot on the transom when I pull the boat out of the water. The average person is lost with my first statement.
 

Runs2rch

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The average person isn't going to notice there is a problem, most of us on here are not average, I always listen to how it cranks to see if a cylinder is low I can feel misfires, I listen for detonation and look for excessive soot on the transom when I pull the boat out of the water. The average person is lost with my first statement.
I prefer to be called mediocre 😆
 

monkeyswrench

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@Shlbyntro , from what you are describing, I'm thinking that the washed cylinders are more easily diagnosed at lower rpm levels. Thinking that, at idle, the injector would be running very rich, and the ignition would be struggling to burn the fuel...but still trying. While the unburned fuel is flooding by the rings, helped along by compression, the motor does not quite have a dead hole. As rpm's rise, due to the programmed fuel curve, the flooded cylinder is getting closer to a proper level, but still far off...making it less detectable. Someone that doesn't use their boat frequently may not notice the difference as it gets progressively worse.

Kinda how it goes down?

This is all hypothetical to me, my boats have carbs. Someday I'd like to run injection, but I understand my carbs.
 

rrrr

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And regular usage. Running the engine for 15 minutes once a month goes a really long way too

Well, no.

Running an engine at idle for 15 minutes will not impart enough heat into the engine oil to completely remove water in suspension. When the engine is shut down and cools, the moisture will condense on the upper parts of the engine block, particularly the cam and lifters. This can lead to rust pitting on the cam surface, which may then result in lifter spalling.

It's always better to run the engine under load for at least 30 minutes.
 

Shlbyntro

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@Shlbyntro , from what you are describing, I'm thinking that the washed cylinders are more easily diagnosed at lower rpm levels. Thinking that, at idle, the injector would be running very rich, and the ignition would be struggling to burn the fuel...but still trying. While the unburned fuel is flooding by the rings, helped along by compression, the motor does not quite have a dead hole. As rpm's rise, due to the programmed fuel curve, the flooded cylinder is getting closer to a proper level, but still far off...making it less detectable. Someone that doesn't use their boat frequently may not notice the difference as it gets progressively worse.

Kinda how it goes down?

This is all hypothetical to me, my boats have carbs. Someday I'd like to run injection, but I understand my carbs.

That is exactly how it happens! Thankyou for puting it in those easily understood terms.

I myself am not even sure I would be able to detect as it was happening and I tend to have an acute ear and feel for the machines. I honestly couldn't tell you definitively that I would have been able to catch this one before it was too late just by driving it.

This engine was 26months old with 43 operating hours on it when it failed, presumably all under the same distressed fueling from the very get go.
 

Shlbyntro

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Well, no.

Running an engine at idle for 15 minutes will not impart enough heat into the engine oil to completely remove water in suspension. When the engine is shut down and cools, the moisture will condense on the upper parts of the engine block, particularly the cam and lifters. This can lead to rust pitting on the cam surface, which may then result in lifter spalling.

It's always better to run the engine under load for at least 30 minutes.

Agreed. But running a boat under load for 30 minutes isn't always doable during the winter and I didn't say anything about idling. I prefer 1500-2000 rpm with or without load and getting it up to operating temperature (which usually takes 10-15 minutes)

However, in this day and age of roller valvetrain and SN+ oils. The oiling systems are not the ones to be worried about. The fuel systems are. The most paramount thing is to not let the same fuel sit in the same place in the fuel pump, fuel lines, fuel rails, or injectors for too long. Everything else is secondary.




It is important to break these preconceived notions that because "y" technology is newer. It is automatically better than "x" technology. That is never the case and should never be taken for granted that way no matter what anyone is talking about. Yes fuel injection on the same engine will make better power every time, and it will be more fuel efficient too, you could even say easier cold starts as well. But that also means that engine is being run closer to the ragged edge. And when you live life on the ragged edge, well yall know the rest of it. A carburetor will not get you max power, but it can get you 95%. Maybe your engine won't start or will run like absolute dogshit this time around and your weekend plans are scragged every once in a blue moon, but you also know definitively that that carburetor isn't going to hurt your engine while you are none the wiser. It will throw a fit before it'll let you use it like nothings wrong. Fuel injection will not do that for you. It will let you be none the wiser while you destroy your engine with a smile on your face. There is a reason you see old dinosaur original carbed engines a lot more than fuel injected ones when it comes to boats. You just have to weigh the cost/benefit for yourself and ask what is more important to you. The safety of my engine, or the safety of my plans. It is different for all of us.

A well maintained and regularly used fuel injected engine will likely never experience these problems. But one that does a lot of sitting most certainly will.

A carbureted engine exposed to the same kind of usage will be a lot more forgiving because it will become unusable long before experiencing a catastrophic failure because of a fuel related issue
 
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rivermobster

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Don't blame the lack of proper maintenance maintenance on the EFI. A bad needle/seat or stuck float, or piece of debris in a jet can kill a carbed motor as well

Beat me to it...

Not to mention a carb jetted too lean, restricted fuel lines or filters, or bad fuel pumps, fuel socks in the tank, blown power valves...

No carb ever killed an engine!

- said no one ever

😝
 

Shlbyntro

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Beat me to it...

Not to mention a carb jetted too lean, restricted fuel lines or filters, or bad fuel pumps, fuel socks in the tank, blown power valves...

No carb ever killed an engine!

- said no one ever

😝

This guy is saying it.

If you choose to continue to run an engine that runs that terribly, thats on you. Fi failures rarely give you that sign beforehand. Ive only replaced about 200 engines in my 13 year career. You can't ignore facts and numbers.
 

rivermobster

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This guy is saying it.

If you choose to continue to run an engine that runs that terribly, thats on you. Fi failures rarely give you that sign beforehand. Ive only replaced about 200 engines in my 13 year career. You can't ignore facts and numbers.

Here's my numbers...

35+ years as a dealership tech, 4 years in a machine shop, and maybe 8 years building street rods.

Lemme know when you catch up. 😉

I'll take post 8, 12 and 14 for the win.
 

Shlbyntro

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Here's my numbers...

35+ years as a dealership tech, 4 years in a machine shop, and maybe 8 years building street rods.

Lemme know when you catch up. 😉

I'll take post 8, 12 and 14 for the win.
13 years as a non dealer tech fixing all the stuff the dealers can't figure out ;)

Previous 2 engines replaced by MarineMax btw
 

rivermobster

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13 years as a non dealer tech fixing all the stuff the dealers can't figure out ;)

Previous 2 engines replaced by MarineMax btw

I was the shop foreman for years bro. Diagnostic Specialist for Lexus.

I can diagnose and turn a wrench. Like I said, lemme know when you catch up.
 

LargeOrangeFont

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That is exactly how it happens! Thankyou for puting it in those easily understood terms.

I myself am not even sure I would be able to detect as it was happening and I tend to have an acute ear and feel for the machines. I honestly couldn't tell you definitively that I would have been able to catch this one before it was too late just by driving it.

This engine was 26months old with 43 operating hours on it when it failed, presumably all under the same distressed fueling from the very get go.

Well if the guy replaced engine after engine and they were all down on power because multiple holes were too rich, if he’s not paying attention, yea it is presumable he could miss it.. but it would be down on power.

Hell a quick look at the plugs after 5 hours would have revealed an issue. In less than 30 mins the problem could have been determined. It is not the fault of FI. It is lack of maintenance.
 

Shlbyntro

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Well if the guy replaced engine after engine and they were all down on power because multiple holes were too rich, if he’s not paying attention, yea it is presumable he could miss it.. but it would be down on power.

Hell a quick look at the plugs after 5 hours would have revealed an issue. In less than 30 mins the problem could have been determined. It is not the fault of FI. It is lack of maintenance.

That absolutely could have, but 5 hours is not a maintenance interval. So lack of maintenance is not a valid reason. Poor mechanicing, yes. Ultimately though: this engine, the one before it, and presumably the original one, DEATH BY FAILURE OF FUEL INJECTION COMPONENTS.

I change the plugs in my Harley every 1000 miles, and in my cars and boats every year. Every maintenance manual would tell you im insane.
 

LargeOrangeFont

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That absolutely could have, but 5 hours is not a maintenance interval. So lack of maintenance is not a valid reason. Poor mechanicing, yes. Ultimately though: this engine, the one before it, and presumably the original one, DEATH BY FAILURE OF FUEL INJECTION COMPONENTS.

I change the plugs in my Harley every 1000 miles, and in my cars and boats every year. Every maintenance manual would tell you im insane.

I get all that, but I see both sides of an “uninformed” owner on this one. A stuck injector usually doesn’t stick while in operation (I have had that happen though) so there is not an immediate change.

This guy likely got it out of storage, Boat was down on power, not running perfect, and then continues a similar running condition engine after engine. After the first engine repair if I didn’t notice an improvement, I would investigate further. But that is just me.

You know as well as I do this would and should have been investigated and discovered with one look at the spark plugs.
 

JUSTWANNARACE

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That absolutely could have, but 5 hours is not a maintenance interval. So lack of maintenance is not a valid reason. Poor mechanicing, yes. Ultimately though: this engine, the one before it, and presumably the original one, DEATH BY FAILURE OF FUEL INJECTION COMPONENTS.

I change the plugs in my Harley every 1000 miles, and in my cars and boats every year. Every maintenance manual would tell you im insane.

"Death by fuel injection components" .. because of an incompetent mechanic. That statement make 100% more sence!!

If someone(mechanic) is replacing motors and not replacing, or at least flow benching the injectors.. it is the fault of the mechanic not the fault of the system!

I think it is awesome that you are one that does and you will have a happy customer for life!

Same thing with the old aftermarket fuel controllers.. if the battery went dead for a substantial amount of time they would default back the the factory. When the motor blows up who's fault is it?? I saved every map I ever built with the customers name just for this exact reason.. pull up the map I built and show them the default map.. "not my fault" its was your lack of maintenance!
 

bonesfab

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I have an injector flow bench and cleaner. It is crazy to see the difference of flow on the injectors. Some are down 20-25% I have had a couple ls engines where all 8 injectors are gummed up.
 
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