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Q & A

Got a technical question or a boating query? Post your quandaries here and pick the brains of the WW team. You can also add your answers to others' questions, or browse through previous answers.

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Trickle charging batteries

My 10 amp Smart battery charger has just failed. I use it to keep my 3x110 amp domestic batteries trickle charged via a shoreline connection when at my home mooring. I am receiving conflicting advice on what I should buy to replace it. One view is that a charger rated at 10 amps is not adequate for the job and that I need at least 50 amps. The other opinion is that for a trickle charge, 10 amps should be adequate. Do you have a view?

Asked by: John Burt  | Monday 3 September, 2.27pm | 3 answers

NB Purton

Is there a histo9ry of the 1930's Northwhich Purton? I think it was cut down by BW for the L&L as a floating workshop, then privately owned.

Asked by: John Mack  | Saturday 1 September, 11.58am | 3 answers

How good is 2 pack paint

Is having a narrowboat sprayed with 2 pack paint worthwhile. Does the surface chip & scratch less and stay rust free longer.

Asked by: grayham pope  | Friday 31 August, 5.49pm | 2 answers

Best filter for diesel bug /water.

Can you advise the best extra filter to fit before the standard fuel filter on my Nanni engine to remove water and the diesel bug from my fuel ?

Asked by: David Spencer  | Friday 31 August, 4.25pm | 4 answers

Locking fuel cap

Does anyone know where i can buy a locking fuel cap for my narrowboat?

Asked by: Paul Jones  | Tuesday 28 August, 5.55pm | 3 answers

70 foot long mooring rope

Where can i buy a 70 foot long mooring rope (delivered) for the bow of my 58 foot narrowboat for when i travel the Thames single handed. Tried searching online but can't find one, any suggestions.

Asked by: Paul Jones  | Tuesday 28 August, 5.53pm | 3 answers

porp going round

engine going prop turning boat wont move

Asked by: graham blackhurst  | Saturday 25 August, 8.24pm | 2 answers

Problems with inverter

Hello, we have a sterling Inverter and have just had 4 new batteries, but have a problem with the power. The ac out light on the inverter flashes intermittently and affects the radio, fridge, tv etc so that we cannot run them. This happens when travelling or moored, but not when we are connected to the mains

Asked by: Carol/Keith  | Tuesday 21 August, 7.50pm | 2 answers

Engine struggles after a few hours cruising

Hi there. I have a Narrowboat with a Nanni diesel 4110 with a PRM150 gearbox. I usually go along at about 1500 - 1800 revs quite happily. Recently, after a while cruising the engine gets more and more laboured until at 2500 revs it is struggling to keep going with smoky exhaust. It's as if the prop is tangled (which it isn't) or like it's dragging something heavy behind.
The engine runs cool, at around 45-50 deg C instead of the recommended 71 deg C and I have identified that the thermostat has been removed by the previous owner (I've ordered a new one). Oil pressure seems within bounds and in neutral the engine sounds fine, it has recently had the injectors reconditions.
Gearbox oil seems fine and having had new engine mounts recently the prop has been aligned. I have had an oil and all filters changed too.
Any thoughts? Could the low engine temperature be causing this issue?

Asked by: Keith R Harris  | Tuesday 21 August, 11.26am | 4 answers

Sealing fibreglass roof.

I have a 50-year-old narrowboat with a fibreglass roof. In recent years it staretd to leak more and more, in different places, particularly after heavy rain. I can't find the actual cracks, and more will probably appear, so I was wondering if I can seal all of it somehow, for instance using glass fibre resin or epoxy. Is it feasible? Would it make the roof texture very uneven? It doesn't have to be perfect and shiny, but I'd rather avoid thick smudges and such.
Thanks a lot,

Asked by: Jedrek Burakiewicz  | Monday 20 August, 2.09pm | 6 answers

Contaminated hot water?

Thank you for your first ansewer. The boat surveyor could not find the PRV and has said in his report that one must be fitted. If there isn't one at the moment, could this cause the contamination?

Asked by: Paul Taylor  | Sunday 19 August, 10.14pm | 1 answer

Contaminated hot water?

My narrowboat's hot water is heated by the engine (this may be usual; I don't know). There is a noticeable smell of diesel when the hot water is run, e.g. in the shower, which can't be right. Any thoughts please on cause(s) and solution(s)? Thanks.

Asked by: Paul Taylor  | Sunday 19 August, 8.02pm | 1 answer

Battery Charging

My domestic batteries are still going strong after five years but I had to replace my starter battery of the same age at the beginning of this season. This is probably due to the use of a three stage charger on the domestic batteries over the winter. My starter battery doesn't have the same charging facility. My question is would it do any good or harm if I connected a lead between the sets of batteries once the charger was at the trickle stage?

Asked by: Clive Dutson  | Wednesday 15 August, 12.32pm | 4 answers

solar panels

thanks for your advice soler panels ect just one last question 2x120 watt solas 60feet batts to solas what size cable do i need thanks

Asked by: christopher smith  | Monday 6 August, 12.39pm | 1 answer

soler panels

are the large individuel soler panels fitted on houses the same as the smaller ones fitted on boats could i fit say 1 x200 watt panal 5x3feet on my boat

Asked by: christopher smith  | Monday 30 July, 7.52pm | 1 answer


I've just bought a boat and am replacing th engine and adding an additional 3 leisure batteries to the existing bank of 2 (plus a starter). The old engine had a single small altenator. The new engine (Beta 38) has twin 40 and 100. They will now run the starter from the 40a and 5 * 110a leisure batteries from the 100a. The boat has an adverc fitted but not connected (I don't know why). The elictrician I have coming in to fit the new batteries tells me that he does not like Advercs and that I would get no advantage from using it. Also, he says that the altenator would have to be adapted for it, so more trouble than it's worth.
I'm going to be a liveaboard, moored up most of the time but with no hook up. I'll need to run the engine to top up the batteries pretty much every day. Should I connect the Adverc?
Advercs seem to be a bit like Marmite with half the people I talk to loving and the other half hating them.

Asked by: Carl Young  | Thursday 26 July, 6.20am | 3 answers

panel type

sorry to pester you again i forgot to ask what is the difference between poly and mono solar panels which type are best

Asked by: christopher smith  | Wednesday 25 July, 7.14pm | 1 answer

Will my boat need replating

Hi I have a 1980s harbrough marine narrow boat the survey report reading said bottom plate5.5 to 6.1 counter base 5.5 to 6.1. I'm worried that it will need replating. If so how long would it be before I have to have it done??? Or how long before she sinks !!!!! Thank you

Asked by: jane  | Wednesday 25 July, 12.05am | 3 answers

solar panels

iwish to fit 300 watt solar panel and 500 watt wind charger how many amps will my controler need to be

Asked by: christopher smith  | Friday 20 July, 6.55pm | 3 answers

Use of 'Rediline mechanical inverter'

I am looking at buying a very tidy 1990-built 50' narrowboat that is fitted with a Readiline mechanical inverter that converts 12 volt power to 240 volts (or so it says in the blurb!)(the guy at the marina described it as a 'converter', an early form of inverter). Never having heard of these, can you advise me:
1. Would it be best to replace it with a modern inverter or, if it works OK, leave it alone and use it?
Will it run a washing machine, if we have one fitted?
3. Any other thougts/advice you may have?
The boat appears to have 1 starter and 2 domestic batteries.

Asked by: Paul Taylor  | Sunday 15 July, 4.17pm | 1 answer

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