Running Lights and Water Infusion

Aqua Signal Series 41 Navigation Light
One of the advantages of being in a slip is that you can pull the bow forward over the dock and work on those items at the stem easily. This morning with a clear sky I got off my apathetic butt and addressed the running lights.

You may remember that I changed out the bow light just before I left Masonboro Yacht Club Marina on my way to Jamaica. You may also remember that the new light did not work. This morning I went out with a voltmeter and tested the power to the light. Wow - there was lots of power. Greatly relieved that I did not have to spend hours crawling through the boat to find the broken wire I then tested the bulb. Fine. The problem, it turns out, is that the two spring tabs that power the light bulb were not bent enough to make contact. But, what the heck, I spent 60 for a cheap piece of plastic. Why should it work? I also noticed that there was a little bit of water infusion - it has been raining on and off the past couple of days. Why would they make it waterproof? It is only a part for a boat. Of course the reason I had to replace the unit in the first place was water infusion.

At this point I shifted my attention to the stern light. It was also not working. After hanging out (literally) over the stern I was able to determine that the light was not on. More than that, the light would not come out of the socket. It seems that water infusion had rusted the bulb. The only way to remove it was to destroy the bulb. So I did.

I now have running lights again. Great!

Fair winds and following seas :)


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