I just saw a picture on Facebook of a woman undertaking a diesel engine maintenance course. It got plenty of 'likes' and some positive comments from men who “like to see women getting involved”!

It is some years ago now that I did a marine diesel engine maintenance course for women but I really enjoyed it. The course included the chance to get hands-on practical experience with a few real engines in a workshop situation.If you are a woman thinking of doing the same I must say that doing the course in an all-female group was less intimidating than doing it in a mixed gender group. (This is because I seem to perceive men as having an extra part of their brain dedicated to machines and tools – which is probably terribly prejudiced of me and possibly untrue!)

Anyway, if you know absolutely nothing about diesel engines you can actually turn this all around simply by taking a one day course!

Life saver

Whether you are a girl or a boy there are some real benefits of undertaking some beginners training so that you know your way around your engine.

Basic boat maintenance and taking care of your engine on a regular basis can save you a lot of trouble in the long run. The main cause of rescue call-outs to cruisers is mechanical failure, so having the knowledge could not just save you money; it could even save your life.

Whether you’re a sail boat or a powerboat user you could surely benefit from learning a little basic knowledge. A course can teach you how the engine works, how to keep it working properly, basic checks you could be doing yourself, how to undertake small maintenance tasks and how to restart the engine if it breaks down.

In a one day beginners course you could learn a little about how the engine works, what the different systems and parts are and how to locate and diagnose a fault. A course may cover how to fix common problems, how to bleed the fuel system, and change the impeller. You’ll also learn what things you should take care of before laying the boat up for winter.

Boat maintenance in Essex

The sun is shining and Spring has begun. It’s the perfect time to give your boat a little TLC before you get back out on the water.

The RYA Diesel Engine Maintenance Course is a one day course for beginners. It assumes no prior experience and is available at Estuary Sailing, Fambridge Yacht Haven.

There is also an engine maintenance course for yachtsman at Crouch Sailing School.

First Class Sailing offer diesel courses either at their training centre in Chelmsford or at venues across Essex, Herts and London. Email colin@firstclasssailing.com for details.

If you're thinking of doing some basic maintenance to get your boat ready for sale check out our 15 awesome reasons to sell your boat with Boatshed!


Image credit: Volvo Penta D4 260 Diesel engine on Prinz 33 Open

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