Updating Your Live Wells - Part 2: Reassembly

Jasper Johnson “Hook Up”

Okay, we have now completely taken everything out of the Bilge area associated with the Live Well upgrade that needed to be removed. NOTE: Take notes as you do the removal on positioning so you have them for the re-install. We now will start the re-installation of all the new stuff.

The first thing we had to do was drill the two holes in the port and starboard side gunnels to install the new Pump out ports and install the hoses for the pump out system from the live wells.

Like most boats, the live well pumps are staggered in the bilge area of the boat and are placed where ever there is ample room. In my case one was toward the rear of the bilge and the other was staggered forward up under the oil and gas tanks. My goal was to change this and bring both father to the rear so that I have access to both pumps in the future and do not have to worry about removing the gas tank again should one of the pumps goes bad in the future. This required me to purchase a live well quick disconnect hose kit to get the same hoses that are currently in the boat but the kit will allow me to replace the shorter hoses with longer hoses to move the pumps father to the rear.

If you will remember I told you that my live wells were not working properly and were leaking during the recirculate cycle. This was due to the old valves being worn out so I had to purchase two new valves to be installed during this upgrade. Both valves are controlled from the control panel you saw in my previous article. 

Next we installed the new valves and replaced the hoses on the live well pumps to move them further to the rear and out from under the gas tank when re-installed.

Next is to install the new automatic bilge pump switch. This switch will convert my manual bilge pump into an automatic pump. When the arm floats up due to water in the bilge it will automatically turn on the bilge pump to remove the excess water. After moving the live well pumps there is very little room left to install the switch, but I was able to get it in.

 Now I have to test all of it to make sure it is all working properly and nothing is leaking. First I closed the live well valves to recirculate and filled both the live wells with water. I then turned on the recirculate switch and voila there is water coming out of the live well jets. Next, I tested the pump out system to make sure it works and had no leaks. These are activated by pushing in the jets to the off position and, voila, water is coming out of both gunnel ports. Yeah!

Okay, turn off recirculate and move valves to open and see if the live wells drain properly and completely out the rear drain ports and there are no leaks in the lines. Perfecto!

Next is the real chore, re-installing the Support wall boards and the gas tank and getting it remounted and tied down. After getting the wall and the tank back in I just worked in reverse sequence to re-install everything that I have taken off the boat.  

Now for the true test…take it to the water. 

Worked great. Hope this gives you the incentive to do these kind of major repairs in the future, however if you think it’s above your head, take it to a true professional and let them do it. The biggest problem is the amount of hour that they will have to put into removing and re-installing all the stuff and at $100.00 bucks and hour that can be very expensive.

Now I have to admit I screwed up on two things that I will have to fix in the future. First the control valves that came in were the wrong ones but I had a tourney coming up so I installed them anyway. Will have to order the right ones, $36.00 each x 2 and re-install. Second I went with 500GPH pumps. Should have been the 800 GPH pumps to improve velocity of the water coming in and being pumped out. Sometimes going the cheaper route only cost you more in the long run! Only thing I will have to do on this is buy the 800GPH cartridges, $32.57 each x 2 and snap them in place and connect the wires. Will keep the 500GPH pumps as emergency back-ups. $138.14 mistake plus all the time it’s going to take to take it apart again. That’s what happens with impatience! 

Well now that it’s done time to go catch a big’un!! If you have any questions and or comments please send them to Hook_up66@Yahoo.com and I promise I’ll get your questions answered and take your comments into consideration. Have a great day on the water and let me see the pictures of those big’un you catch. 

Copperas Cove Leader Press

2210 U.S. 190
Copperas Cove, TX 76522
Phone:(254) 547-4207