Running on low oil

Discussion in 'Downeast Engine Room' started by pennh2o, Jan 12, 2018.

  1. pennh2o

    pennh2o Member

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    I was doing some maintenance on the boat yesterday and checked my oil level. The oil was well below the minimum mark. Only the tip of the dipstick had oil on it. I don't remember when I last checked the oil level however the last oil change was on 9/7/2017. I put 200 hours on the engine since that time. Engine performed normal the whole time. I do have a oil pressure gauge that never went off. Engine is a Volvo 63P-A with about 5200 hrs.

    Should I be concerned?
     
  2. djmarchand

    djmarchand Senior Member

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    I wouldn't be concerned about running low on oil; you probably still had 2-3 gallons left in the crank case. But sudden high oil consumption would be a concern to investigate.

    David
     
  3. WoundUpMarine

    WoundUpMarine Captain

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    Agreed, I would be more concerned about where the oil went rather than running it low on oil. If it was still on the dipstick, even just on the tip, your fine. Is the boat at a weird angle anything as to why the oil level would be off? Any oil in the bilge from a possible leak?
     
  4. pennh2o

    pennh2o Member

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    Boat is in the water so no weird angle. No oil seen in the bilge. The engine did not burn oil in between previous oil changes.
     
  5. WoundUpMarine

    WoundUpMarine Captain

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    That's a tough one, how much oil did it take to bring it back up to full? If it is burning oil there are an awful lot of place it could be going. Heck an oil scraper ring could have gotten stuck and burned the oil and freed up again. Best you can do is fill it up and monitor it more closely, see if it happens again and if so get a rate of how much oil you're burning.
     
  6. Keelboater

    Keelboater Captain

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    You might want to take a look at the engine coolant. Anything milky is never a good sign.
     
  7. RockBottomFish

    RockBottomFish Senior Member

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    My 3208 burns about a quart for 10 hours running time, was told this is normal. Put a Hal gallon in every other trip.
     
  8. MASTERENEGADE

    MASTERENEGADE Captain

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    I haven't met a motor that does NOT burn some oil. Some motors such as Detroits (an example) use more oil then others. I work on quite a few different boats and various different engines.
    I would do what WoundupMarine stated to do: monitor your oil more closely and see how much oil per trip you are losing. And def check your coolant to make sure that is normal.
    I religiously check the oil and other fluid levels every trip on any vessel I run..I do not ever want to have to be the one to make the call to a owner, that I just smoked his engine.
     
  9. Kodiakan

    Kodiakan Senior Member

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    As was said, if it showed a bit on the dipstick you'll most likely be ok. Some engines start to use more oil as it gets dirty (towards the oil change). Could be it used the oil at the end of your hours. All good advice above.
     
  10. riskybusiness

    riskybusiness Senior Member

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    Pull the stick wipe it off, put it back in and give a 10count or else it will give you that false low reading. My tamd63p does that but prob check it more than once every 200 hours
     
  11. CEShawn

    CEShawn Captain

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    Like they all said, keep a better eye on it. In that too, see if your condition has changed alot. When I ran my boat at 8 knots to the canyons and back never burned any oil really, just a little bit. Now when I do my cod trips, at 14.5KT, blazing speed in my regard, after two trips, I know I like to add a qt before the 3rd... So be aware of what your doing to it as well, if that has changed.

    As we have seen in the posts here, make it easy to inspect coolant/oil dipstick etc, if you make it easier, you will do it more and to save on these engines, its a costly mistake not too.
     
  12. pennh2o

    pennh2o Member

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    Understood, will be monitoring weekly.
     

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