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Hydraulic Boat Lift problem

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  • Hydraulic Boat Lift problem

    looking for some advice on our boat lift. We bought a used Shoremaster Hydraulic Cantilever lift last year. It ran ok but we kept on having to charge the battery after lots. When I would move the lift I would have to do about 4 full cycles (without the boat on it) and that would be enough to completely drain the battery. I thought maybe the battery was weak.

    Went to install the lift yesterday and after running it just for a short while noticed the motor that runs the pump was smoking a bit. Shut it off and waited - I could barely get the lift up or down.

    Can anyone give some troubleshooting tips especially with the hydraulic power unit?

    Last edited by KWSC; 06-18-2017, 08:45 PM.
    Kamloops Waterski Club

  • #2
    I took my pump/motor unit to a local bobcat mechanic and they fixed mine for $100. I just had a bad solenoid. Also, do you have a charger on your battery? You should keep some sort of trickle charger on it to prevent draining it completely. I know you're dealing with more than a bad battery but just food for thought.


    • #3
      Thanks. The more that I think about it the more that I lean towards something in the hydraulic unit. I will test the motor solenoids today and see what voltage they are putting out. I can't see any valve solenoids on my HPU - I am somewhat mystified as to how this HPU pumps in the opposite direction.

      And yes, we have a 10w solar panel on the battery. It is pretty much fully charged after a week or so of not being in use.
      Kamloops Waterski Club


      • #4
        I had two issues when installing my lift that caused the motor to work harder than needed.
        1) I had one of the hose connections that wasn't seated tightly enough and while it wasn't leaking there is a check valve type bearing that wasn't fully opened and was restricting flow. The connection seemed tight when I put wrenches on it because I had started using the system so there was a few thousand pounds of hydraulic pressure on it. I had to release pressure on the system through a bleeder valve at the pump, then tighten all connection until I found the one that wasn't tight enough.

        2)Flow control valve. When trying to troubleshoot problem 1 above I had adjusted the flow control which was correctly set at the factory. After fixing problem 1, I had to find the correct setting again.

        I attached my manual maybe yours is similar. Maybe not.
        Attached Files
        2009 CSX 220 SS
        1999 Maristar 210 VRS LTR


        • #5
          I spoke with the factory and they think the hydraulic motor might need replacement. I am going to measure the current draw when it is going over the relief (should be 134amps). If it is more that will be the sign the motor needs replacing. Might need to replace the motor seal too.
          Kamloops Waterski Club


          • #6
            so, took apart the motor - covered in oil. Took the pump off the flange and the oring seal was missing (not sure for how long). Ordered a new motor and replaced the seal. To keep me going I cleaned the old motor and put it back on. Huge difference on the first lift - motor was way quieter and faster. After that it slowed down (I am sure there is some oil left in the motor). My new motor should be here tomorrow which should get me back in business!
            Kamloops Waterski Club