Indoor/Outdoor Boat Transom Repair

Boats that carry an indoor/outdoor motor, attached to the transom, are prone to rotting around the bolt holes in the transom. This has nothing to do with how well the boat has been crafted, but is a normal problem through wear and tear. Recognizing and repairing this area, can save to hundreds or thousands of dollars in repair or replacement, by catching the signs early on.

Examine Transom each Season

Between the regular pulling up and pushing down of an engine, and the constant water circulation, the proper fit of bolts can begin to weaken. This may not be obvious until the boat has been removed from the water and stored. If you find areas around bolts that always seem moist, or water constantly drips out, you probably have damage to the wood inside your transom. Allowing the wood to dry out, thoroughly, is necessary to begin repairs.

Getting to the Damage

Soft wood around the bolt holes can indicate further damage inside. However, by cutting around the opening, you can expose enough of the area to repair, without removing the entire transom. Once you have found undamaged wood, cut a piece of plywood large enough to cover the hole and screw into place. Use a good resin epoxy to seal the hole where the damage first occurred. It may take several days of drying time to completely seal the area, but it is worth the time.

Cosmetics of the Job

Depending on how nice you want your repair to look, a piece of fiberglass bonded to the board, may be enough. Remember that your motor will hide most of the work performed. However, you can also replace the entire exterior, if cosmetics are important. New holes will have to be drilled for placement of the motor, which means you may need to shift the engine slightly. Use a rubber expansion product around, and inside, the new holes to better secure the seal.

The normal cost for repairing a transom at a shop, can run between $2,000 and $5,000, depending on the material used and the extent of damage. Many times, the entire section is just replaced. Save the money and come away with excellent results by undertaking the project yourself.

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