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Stainless steel water tanks.

This is not a question but our experience. We found water in our cabin bilge and went through the process of checking pipework for leaks (none), checking condensation collection, (none) and nearly gave up thinking the hull must be leaking. At only 7 years old and having had an out of the water full survey before purchase we took it that a stainless steel water tank would not be the problem. We finally disassembled furniture, bed and front bulkhead to gain access and found that indeed the corner weld were leaking and also causing rust to appear in the domestic water supply, which we had put down to sand etc in the canal side water feeds. It transpired that the tank had been welded with MIG welding and stainless requires TIG welding. It cost us nearly £700 for a new tank and much hard work to fit and re-build the boat and much lost cruising time. This would not have formed part of the pre purchase survey. The moral is, check your bilges regularly and the colour of your water from the taps etc. Our new tank now includes an access hatch to allow us to inspect the condition with the tank drained down. Hope this is of interest.

Asked by: John Boggis  | 5.07pm, Thursday 1 February

WW says:

Very much of interest and alas not that uncommon. Some boatbuilders make their own stainless tanks and don't use the correct welding- those made by experienced stainless fabricators are usually fine, as they use the correct equipment, flux and rods.
Sorry to hear the pain that you have gone through- and I think other readers will be interested in your issues. Thank you for sharing them.

Mark Langley  | 5.29PM, Thursday 1 February

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