Science of Silence

What steps can I take towards reducing vibration on my yacht?

What steps can I take towards reducing vibration on my yacht?

Nothing ruins the feeling of a smooth, comfortable ride quite like nagging vibration.

Excessive noise and vibration is not only disruptive and irritating, it’s also an important sign that maybe something’s wrong. There can be a number of causes, which, if left unchecked, can cause further damage to your boat. If you’ve found yourself asking, “How do I go about reducing vibration on my yacht?” then read on to learn about some common problems and solutions…

Finding the source of the problem

While it can be tricky to pin down the exact cause of the vibration, doing so is the only way to put a permanent stop to it.

Luckily, finding the source of the issue is really just a process of elimination, as common causes can be whittled down to the same group of repeat offenders. Our experts recommend that you complete a dockside test and examine the yacht whilst running in neutral to help find the cause of the rattling. More often than not, the root problem can be identified as the engine mount, the engine itself or the propellers.

Engine mounts

Experts have estimated that engine mount issues account for anywhere between 60-80% of vibration problems on yachts.

Mounts can cause vibration for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the type of mount plays a factor. If it’s a pedestal engine mount (even a low-profile one) you may find it hasn’t been adjusted properly or that the installation nuts have come loose, causing a loud rattling. Ensure that all mounts are properly fastened tightly to reduce any unwanted movement. If your engine mount has deteriorated, that too can be a factor.

Engine issues

Just like an older engine mount will “show it’s age” through vibrating and rattling, so too will the engine itself. General wear and tear can amount to minor rattles, but if the vibration is becoming problematic, you may need to consider an overhaul. Insufficient lubrication can cause an unpleasant and loud vibration, but this is something that can easily be rectified. Monthly checks will help you spot any engine issues before they start to cause problems, and help you discern whether it’s a question of simple maintenance or a full repair that’s in order.

Propeller issues

Propellers can be a cause of unpleasant vibration, the most common reason being that they have become misaligned or out of balance. This will cause them to wobble, especially at slow speeds, which will in turn resonate throughout the yacht. You can inspect the propeller to check for any damage, or run a test at slow speed and feed it in action under water (props can withstand a fair amount of wear and tear, but burs, nicks and scratches shouldn’t cause vibration issues). Ensuring that your propellers are safely fastened and operating safely will help combat vibration, and contribute to your personal comfort onboard.

When you’re out on the waves thinking, “I should really do something about reducing noise on my yacht,” now you’ve got the handy tips you need to do just that!

Are you having issues with vibration? Contact the team at Halyard to learn about how we can help fix the issue so you can enjoy a smooth ride.