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Author Topic:   No flow from tell-tale on 15 hp Johnson kicker
andygere posted 09-30-2002 02:04 PM ET (US)   Profile for andygere   Send Email to andygere  
I started up my 1980 Johnson 15 hp kicker as part of my pre-trip routine yesterday and there was no water flow from the tell-tale, so I quickly shut it down. The last time I ran the motor (~3 weeks ago)it ran fine and pumped a steady stream. The water pump and housing were replaced last year, and the motor has less than 20 hours run time on it since then (in clean, deep salt water). There was no obvious sign of anything blocking the intake screens, and when I put it on muffs and hose there was still no flow from the tell-tale. Any ideas on why it would suddenly quit pumping, or ways to troubleshoot the problem? Also, it fired on the first pull as usual. The boat is kept in the water, but the kicker is tilted free when not in use.
TampaTom posted 09-30-2002 02:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for TampaTom  Send Email to TampaTom     
The tell tale could be cloged. Try sticking a wire hanger into it. Also check to see if hot water is coming though the exhast (exit for cooling water).
Bigshot posted 09-30-2002 02:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Remove shroud and start. See if water starts coming out of exhaust in rear. Take a wire and try and unclog the hole. There is a 90degree fitting on them and my 9.9 and my 15 rarely ever peed because it would clog so darn easy.
etstmeb posted 09-30-2002 02:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for etstmeb  Send Email to etstmeb     
Put earmuffs on the unit--force fresh water thru the systm. It may dislodge your problem. I did this exact thing last weekend with an '87 15hp. Good luck.
jimp posted 09-30-2002 04:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimp  Send Email to jimp     
My old 6 Yamaha would do that. Salt water solidifies and the salt clogs the tell-tale. I still carry a half-straightened paper clip under the engine cowling. If your 15 worked fine 3 weeks ago, its likely salt.

Years ago when I'd store the 6 in a warm room for 8 months (over 82F most of the time) the impeller would become "reshaped" and wouldn't pump, in that case, I had to replace it.


David Ratusnik posted 09-30-2002 05:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for David Ratusnik  Send Email to David Ratusnik     
Try some Salt A Way. Seems to clean out abit of the salt. .03 David
andygere posted 09-30-2002 05:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Thanks for the advice everyone! I'll check the telltale tube to see if it's clogged first. I tried to clear things out by starting with a good flow through the muffs, but it didn't work. I was hesitant to do it for too long because I didn't want to overheat the motor and damage the head and/or gasket.

David, what is SaltAway, and how do you use it to clean out the cooling system? I suspect it is caked up salt that is causing the problem.

simonmeridew posted 09-30-2002 07:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for simonmeridew  Send Email to simonmeridew     
this time of year we get mud wasps that climb into the telltail looking for a place to lay eggs or whatever and they cover the hole in the tube with mud. since the water in the telltale doesnt have a lot of pressure the blockage just makes it look like you have trouble. Once you get it unclogged you might put a golf tee in the tube to keep the critters out. One possibility.
David Ratusnik posted 09-30-2002 07:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for David Ratusnik  Send Email to David Ratusnik     
Andy- To answer your question, I do not know exactly what Salt A Way is-- not a chemist. I buy the stuff at Boat US- looks like the fluid (light blue) you put in your windshield wiper resevoir. Once a month, when I flush my engine I use the stuff. In the hose line you insert a spritzer (I use one that liquid fertilizer can be sprayed from) -- Salt A Way sells their own spritzer.
The claim is that salt is retarded in having an impact on metal surfaces of all sorts. Obviously, the internal water jacket passages should take longer to clog with salt if the claim is true. I shoot some of the stuff up under the engine on the trim tilt mechanism as well as down over the lower foot and prop. Once a month I shoot some on my aluminum trailer- springs and wheels especially. It may work, it may not. I figure it can't hurt and may improve the cooling in the block and water pump function. It might just improve the water flow in an oldish engine. .03 David
Drisney posted 10-01-2002 01:53 AM ET (US)     Profile for Drisney  Send Email to Drisney     
Andy, quick!!! Look in the "Marketplace" section...22 Revenge wt...hurry!!!
Clark Roberts posted 10-01-2002 06:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for Clark Roberts  Send Email to Clark Roberts     
A length of weed-eater string makes a great cleaner device to run up the tattle tale stream passageway and wont damage rubber hose as will metal wire! Try taking the whole tubing system off and clean thourghly. Wiggle the string into the fitting at engine block also... good luck.. Clark.. SCN
Tom W Clark posted 10-01-2002 10:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

I have a Johnson 9.9 that is used exclusively in salt water and the tell tale clogs all the time from crystalized salt.

Just about anything will unclog it. I typically use a pine needle from the bottom of the boat and the stream is restored. Start with the simple things first before taking anything apart.

browning20ga posted 10-03-2002 12:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for browning20ga  Send Email to browning20ga     
A little shot of air from the air compressor is what I use on my 15hp evenrude.
andygere posted 10-03-2002 01:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll try them out when I get to the boat this weekend.
andygere posted 10-03-2002 05:51 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
I've been lusting after that Revenge since I saw it.....but with a new baby in the house, the timing for a new boat isn't great. How is your 22 running?

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