Re: Amel's suggestion to run the Volvo D3-110 (A54) daily while on passage

ngtnewington Newington

The anti syphon loop should prevent any water making it into the muffler box even when healed on starboard tack.

Many boats have the engine exhaust in the transom and it is said that in certain conditions a wave may slam into the stern forcing water into the engine, but I have never experienced this on a sailing boat. I think some sport fishing boats are prone to this, when backing into a sea once a big fish is hooked. Not our problem.

Can it happen with a sea from the port side? Maybe; I do not know. So far I have not had a problem, between the WI and Greece and a bit of to-ing and fro-ing between.

When I purchased Amelia in Grenada, I of course read the Amel literature on board, cover to cover and made note of that piece of text. It rather goes against my philosophy, now that I have solar and wind generated power. So I have not used the engine at sea just to blast water through the exhaust system. What I do however is keep a good eye on the anti syphon system for both engine and generator. I also note that the bilge pump on the 54 does not have an anti syphon loop as the original one is a diaphram type and thus not prone to syphoning.

So in conclusion I do not bother to run the engine daily. More like every few days or once a week whilst at sea. In practice it is only on longish passages that this is relevant. If the winds are light it is no inconvenience to run the engine for half an hour to get hot water, but when it is windy I hate to run the engine at all. So I do not.

I am interested to hear if anyone has had a problem with this. 

Regarding the Volvo D3. I am happy with mine so far…..fingers crossed. 


Amelia AML 54-019
Stored ashore in Kilada Greece

No you’re not the only one. We do it too. 
But our engine did fail, but it wasn’t a flooded engine scenario, but rather bad cylinder liners. A new engine. H version has been running well from Panama to New Zealand. 
I think it is good advice, on really any engine or configuration, if not sea water, sea mist and air get into the remaining open cylinder through the open valve. 

But a question to those who know much more than I re this scenario: doesn’t the muffler reduce flow from the external boat to the engine?  And also, the one way exhaust valve, at the exit of the exhaust from the hull, also reduce back flow?  

Best of luck Scott
Porter A54-152

On Jan 6, 2020, at 9:22 PM, Scott SV Tengah <Scott.nguyen@...> wrote:

Given the spate of failed Volvo D3-110 engines and more than a few with seawater found in the cylinders, I am inclined to believe that there is a design weakness in the exhaust system on A54s. I do not know if the exhaust system is significantly different on the SM and other prior models but it does seem we only hear of flooded A54 engines.

In any event, I read the following in my manual and at least two other A54 owners had never heard this advice:

"You must run the main engine everyday of sailing for 15 or 20 minutes (in 1 or 2 times) to drain the exhaust circuit from the seawater the waves that fill in it."

Am I the only one who does this?
2007 A54 #69
SV Tengah
<Engine Warning Volvo D3-110.pdf>

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