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What do I do about the waterholes in my boat?

We had a question today from a seasonal resident customer who just returned to Southwest Florida this week:

"While painting my boat's bottom it occurred to me that there are a lot of holes under the waterline of my boat. I'm thinking that a one-inch diameter hole could cause a boat to sink, and sink fast. Am I the only one who has ever thought about this? What do you do when a fitting or hose fails?" - Naples, Florida

Answer: All thru-hull fittings below the waterline should be regarded with a healthy dose of paranoia. Carry a bag of wooden plugs aboard for the worse case scenario. These plugs are sold at West Marine and most marine supply stores, and are relatively inexpensive. If water starts rushing in, aim a plug at the center of the leak, and shove the plug into place. After you've stemmed the leak, tap it home with a couple of taps with a hammer. In a pinch, you can also use a t-shirt, wrap it vertically in a knot, and plug the leak by forcing the shirt into the thru-hull breach. Taking some simple precautions should avoid such a situation, though.

Call us today at (239)776-4253 for a thorough inspection of all your thru-hull fittings and hoses to ensure a safe and worry-free day on the water!

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