Restarting a flooded machine

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by bobw, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. bobw

    bobw LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 807

    Well, long story short, we have a Ditchwitch SK350 (Kohler gas engine) mini-skid steer that just spent the last 3 days or so under water.

    Thoughts as to what we should do to try and bring this back alive?

    I'm thinking:

    Replace hydraulic fluid, gas, oil
    Change all filters

    What else? I'm sure that there's other things we need to do...
  2. clydebusa

    clydebusa Inactive
    Messages: 1,660

    Take spark plugs out and spray fluid in the cylinders, spin engine a few times without plugs in it. Spray WD40 just about everywhere to wash water out of all things.
  3. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,139

    Wow I thought you had got a bit too much fuel in the cylinders but I see you take your engine flooding seriously.

    I concur with the Wd-40, spray that inside the cylinders after removing the spark plugs, then gently turn it over a few times.
    By gently, I mean manually with a tool on the crank would likely be best.

    Change oil, hydro fluid, all filters, fuel lines.

    Pull the carburetor and let it drain and dry.
    Actually the air filter you might can just let it dry out too.

    After it's all said and done I think you'll be all right.
  4. alldayrj

    alldayrj LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,793

    Fresh water or salt water? Fresh should be fine. Follow advice above and maybe do your next service sooner than normal. Salt may be a crap shoot
  5. bobw

    bobw LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 807

    Fresh water... we're a solid 12 hour drive from salt water.... will give you some idea of what happened. The machine was in the infield of the racetrack.
  6. kawakx125

    kawakx125 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,130

    one thing that hasn't been mentioned, unplug all electrical connections and spray those out too. being a ditch witch i'm sure everything is probably sealed up pretty good as they see harsh conditions
  7. ducnut

    ducnut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,566

    You'll need a second complete fluid and filter change, after a few hours of use. I bet the oils will all be milkshake-looking from trapped moisture.

    Still, it's better than writing it off.
  8. Breezmeister

    Breezmeister LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from South Jersey
    Messages: 1,734

    2002 60" Exmark Lazer, Kubota L 3350 in a retention pond, I know your pain......

    The engine is your biggest concern, any place that fuel and air can go is what you will need to clean. If your engine oil is milky, then a deeper cleaning will be needed. Get a gasket set. Replace the coils, they will go bad at some point.

    Check your hydraulic fluid, it's a closed system, so unless that oil is milky, I would leave it alone....But would check it after a few hours after running it to see if any of the seals on the rams have leaked.
    If you have a gear case or transfer case, same thing, check for milky oil, seals are the weak point.....

    Dielectric grease on all the electric connection, grounds, etc after you have cleaned them (CRC electric connection cleaner works well) and a good grease at all the zerks, grease until you have clean grease coming out of all the joints.

    Clean all the rams with an oily rag, no chemicals, you don't want to damage any of the seals now. If you have to use anything, Simple Green......

    Wd 40 is good, but I personally would use Fluid Film on every part that is not greaseable, especially springs, cables and controls....

    Good Luck
  9. piston slapper

    piston slapper LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,327

    Breeze...gonna have to disgree on the hydro system...
    They all have a vent...the fluid won't be milky until you start turning the pumps..
    The water will be in the bottom of the tank...oil floats..
    If you drain the hydro tank and remove the filter BEFORE trying to crank the engine..
    You may get lucky and NOT contaminate the system..
  10. bobw

    bobw LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 807

    All fluids and filters have been changed; oil took 4 changes. We'll put a few hours on the machine and recheck them all. Plugs had to be pulled and the cylinders were watered as well. Electrical was pulled apart, dried and dialectric greased.

    We seem to be back in business...

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