Fresh Water Cooling Systems

Written by Dina Kayed
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Most marine engines actually started out as regular engines, which were designed to be cooled by non-corrosive anti-freeze. The use of salt water for cooling is death to an engine, and is the main reason why marine engines don't generally have a very long life. Although the concept is that fresh water cooling systems are only for larger boats, they can benefit any boat, and it's never too late to convert your engine to a fresh water cooling system.

Fresh water cooling systems are used to cool the heat generated by marine engines. This type of system uses lake or sea water to cool the system down, instead of air like cars use, for example. It keeps the temperature steady and prevents the engine from overheating. This system can prolong an engine's life because heat is an enemy to any mechanical system. Fresh water cooling also prevents corrosive saltwater from getting into the engine.

The Simplicity of Fresh Water Cooling Systems

Fresh water cooling systems are wonderfully simple. They consist of one huge tube containing many smaller tubes. Sea water flows through the smaller tubes and is passed over the engine to cool it off. Anti-freeze surrounds the tubes, and is used to carry the heat and contribute to the cooling process.

Fresh water cooling systems are not only used to keep a marine engine cool, they are also useful for stabilizing the pressure inside the engine. A stable engine also helps to make the most economical use of gas. There are two basic types of fresh water cooling systems. A full cooling system cools the block and manifold, while a half cooling system cools the block only. While half systems are easier to install, a full system will offer better protection for your engine.


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