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Posted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 4:14pm

Post Subject: flooring

I'm a new narrowboat owner and have noticed in the cabin near my bow that the floorboards nearest the walls are damp, as is the wall near the floor. Wondering, before I pull anything up, if this is something that will naturally dry out after winter or something I need to take care of now. I have checked the wall under the window and it feels dry. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!


Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 7:18am

Post Subject: flooring

Yes, it probably will dry out in the summer as long as your bilge is water free but that is not the answer because as soon as we get prolonged rain I expect it to come back. Without a lot more details about your boat's age and maker I do not know if you have one huge bilge under the floor running from bow to stern or separate bilges. In the latter case it is vital you locate the trap that should be in the floor close to the back bulkhead, often in a cupboard or under the stern steps, and pump/sponge nay water you find there out. If there is water under the floor you will need to keep pumping & sponging for days because usually it takes time for water to find its way to the back. Despite what you say about the wall under the windows I think this is either a window of roof ventilator leak between the window frame/vent and the cabin side or roof. My guess would be its the windows. If the damp is only on one side of the boat then it might bhen all the taps are turned off. If it is very localised on just one side of the boat in a dead soe a leak from the plumbing but unless it is between the tank and water pump it would cause the pump to run frequently when all the taps are turned off. If it is very localised on just one side of the boat in a dead space where it is difficult for air to circulate it just might be condensation, but I doubt it unless condensation on the window glass and frame is trickling down the wall onto the floor. Window condensation can be minimised by using a DIY film type temporary double glazing stuck to cabin side.If, as I suspect, it is a leak from the window or vent frame then there is every likelihood rust has developed between the frame and cabin side/roof and is forcing the frame away from the hull. The frame or vent will have t come off, the rust removed, treated & repainted and then the frame or vent replaced on new bedding of some type. Decent chandlers sell at least two types. However that is not a winter job so for now you can try to seal the joint from the outside. Do not use silicon because it may cause problems with future paint adhesion. This is not a joke. Captain Tolleys Creeping Crack Cure from a chandlers and aplpied a p er the instructions over several days may well effect a temporary seal until the summer when the window can come out etc.

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