View Full Version : Is it normal for Aluminum Boats to "seep"

07-15-2005, 12:43 PM
I am trying to find an aluminum fishing boat, and when I find one the guys sys it "seeps" just a little since it is a rivited boat, Is this normal????? He said it's not leaking, but after about 8 hours on the water his feet are getting wet. I would like to hear from anyone who has or had a "rivited" Aluminum boat. Thanks in advance!
work email---frank.douglass@travis.af.mil

home email----caskydvr@aol.com
Also, If anyone has a 12-14' Aluminum boat with a 10-15 hp running engine let me know, Thanks!

07-15-2005, 01:25 PM
My cousin and I are "partners" in a very well used 10' Valco- it leaks like a seive. But then, we aren't exactly gentle with it, either. Riveted boats tend to develop leakage over time, because of thermal cycling, if no other reason (like torquing the hull). Buy welded- if ti matters to you. We just carry a couple different sized bailers...

07-15-2005, 01:46 PM
The rivets can be tightened, at least one. It usually stops the leaks, for a while.

The challenge is finding a shop that will do the job for a reasonable price. The process involves whacking each rivet with a hammer.

07-15-2005, 02:02 PM
He said it's not leaking, but after about 8 hours on the water his feet are getting wet.

If water is getting in the boat - and it's not coming in from above - it is leaking. Whether it's getting in through a seam is a different story - it still leaks.

My in-laws picked up a small aluminum boat for their pond (so my kids could paddle around in it) - it "seeped" through the seams. I let it dry out and put 5200 on the seams - tight as a drum.


07-15-2005, 02:30 PM
I had a 12' aluminum boat many years ago that leaked around the rivets. I put it up on some sturdy saw horses and filled it with water to just above the water line and marked the leaking rivets. Then I drilled out the rivets and replaced them with pop rivets treated with a little RTV silicone prior to installation. Voila! No more leaks. ;D

07-15-2005, 03:54 PM
Buy a can of that brush-on truck bed liner from Kragens, & paint the inside of the hull below the waterline. Just make sure the surface is clean & dry when you apply the stuff, and your "seeps" will be gone. You can also mix in a little fine sand & make it a non-skid surface on the bottom.

07-15-2005, 05:40 PM
My dad has a 12' jon boat that he has had since the 1960's. Leaks real bad. Several of the rivets actually are like little sprinkler heads. He has tried silicone on the bottom, but it still leaks. I grew up thinking that bailing the boat was a normal part of fishing. :-/

07-15-2005, 06:04 PM
I have a 60's Gregor welded aluminum boat, and it doesn't leak at all. Riveted boats seem to always leak.

07-15-2005, 06:11 PM
A little 5200 and some hard ribits no more leaks. to do 14ft'er about about 8 hours

07-16-2005, 08:25 AM
Wayneo - Do you hard dry frogs and apply them to? (Snicker)

07-16-2005, 11:00 AM
I had a Valco for about 10 years. For the first eight years it never leaked. Then I started getting water in it. I took it off the trailer to inspect it and found stress cracks on each side near the stern. They were caused by the trailer bunks and, probably due to the fact that the bunks were a few inches short, leaving the stern hanging over the end of them. Had it welded for about $50. Solved the problem. Never had a rivet or a seam leak.

07-16-2005, 04:05 PM
I also have a 12ft gregor and it never leaks.... It never will either! Its a welded boat and i doubt it will ever leak.

Dont go with a leak!!!

07-19-2005, 06:14 PM

Welded aluminum boats do sometimes develop cracks along the welds and leak. *Very few things in life last forever. *Most of these type of cracks are not in the weld itself but just next to the weld in an area that welders and weld engineers refer to as the "heat affected zone." *You can probably inform yourself about weld cracks and welding by doing an internet search. *Just thought you might be interested! *

07-20-2005, 10:16 AM
I have a 13.5' gregor. I have a small crack near a seam that seeps. We threw some aluminium ducting tape over it for a quick fix at camp.I am considering the bed liner option. Anyone done this and like it?? I like the idea of adding fine sand for traction.

07-20-2005, 06:13 PM
Now you guys are scaring me :o ;D ;) so much to learn so far mine isnt leaking ;D

07-20-2005, 07:18 PM
A little care and most riveted boats will last almost forever I have a 12ft that was made in the 50s and it still doesnt leak keep the kids out of it when its not in the water will help the most

rackin up the post tonight ;)

07-21-2005, 04:36 AM
My rivitted 14' Sea-Nymph "seeps" a little. It doesn't, however, seep to the point that my feet ever get wet. And when I go fishing, I'm on the water for 8-10hrs on average.

A small leak is almost expected with an older aluminum and not something that you really need to worry about. Just keep an eye on it and repair/seal if it becomes a problem.

I also have a 12' Jon boat (welded) that tends to leak a little around the transom welds. I just keep a large sponge on the floor in the back of the boat and ring it out every once in a while. This helps to keep the inside of the boat fairly dry.

07-21-2005, 07:04 PM
I understand that LINE-X works well.It might be around 200.00 though.Might be worth looking into. Brettski

07-29-2005, 10:25 AM
I just want to say thank you to everyone who replyed to my question, I forgot I posted this Question. I didn't buy that boat, I decided to go for one that didn't leak! I ended up getting a 12' aluminum "Starcraft" on a "Jeffrey" trailer, that looked like crap, but had potential. I took it home, sanded the trailer, rewired it, recarpeted the bunks and painted it, and it looks great! The boat looks awesome too! the boat is back to it's original aluminum color! Ok, Anyway, Thanks again to everyone who responded to me question!
Franky D :) :) :) :) :)

07-30-2005, 08:15 PM
My father has a 14ft Valco w/johnson 15hp. The previous owner trailered it with motor mounted but did not use a support from the trailer to the lower unit of the motor and you can probably guess where it leaked. Spread a little Marine-Tex (JB-Weld like) on seam at bottom of transom and its feet dry for now. Chickfishing, don't worry about your new ride, it will probably not leak for awhile and when it does, it's always slow enough to be just an annoiance, not a safety hazard :)