Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Narrow Boat Problems

Want this to happen to you?

Of course not! Here's something to help.

The pleasures of narrow boating are tremendous. The gentle progress through the landscape, the time to contemplate, views of wildlife, visits to pubs ... all these are great reasons for taking to the water.
Another side, however, is problems that can occur, many of which you will not have faced before and for which you may be unprepared.
We've faced a few of these over the last 7 years (see previous blogs on grounding, weed, jammed prop etc), so we've decided to share possible problems - and their solutions - with you. We hope you will be able to plan ahead to avoid the worst that boating can throw at you. We've experienced many of these problems and we wouldn't like you to endure them too.
This page is the list of contents, linking to separate blogs on different topics and updated as we go, all with sections on Problem, Cause, Solution and Avoidance, including the following:

1.  Engine stops suddenly when in gear and won't restart
2.  Water overheating
3.  Excess water in the engine bilges
4.  Water in the cabin bilges
5.  Engine won't start
6.  Progress is slow underway and increasing engine speed doesn't help
7.  Interior lights dim or fail
8.  Solid fuel stove gives out smoke into the boat
9.  Water won't pump away
10. Pools of water found internally near window
11. Engine vibrates more than usual 
12. Boat caught on a lock cill
13. Holding tank smells
14. Engine has poor performance - smoky, sludge ...
15. Engine won't stop when ignition switched off
16. Running aground
17. Cast Adrift 
18. Man Overboard
19. Theft or vandalism
20. Fire or smoke
21. Engine runs but prop doesn't turn
22. Boat tilts in a lock

And then there's General Maintenance! Don't let it put you off!
Perhaps you could contribute your own Narrow Boat Problem - with cause, solution and avoidance strategy. Just write in the comments box below.
Meanwhile you should also look at advice from ...
The Canal and River Trust Handbook for Boaters,
Practical Narrowboating Maintenance
Canal Junction.

If you have any doubts about coping, make sure you have a subscription to River Canal Rescue, the AA / RAC of narrow boats.

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