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Well, I made a $800 mistake by flipping the little switch on the engine on panel.

Jun 25, 2020
Hunter 33 Ruskin FL
I unintentionally released the engine fire extinguishers by foolish flipping the switch not knowing what it did.

Has anyone else done that and is there any process I need to follow regarding the engine?

What started out as me going for a Sunday sail with friends turned into an expensive lesson.


Belle Amie Apollo (hunter 33 2005)Beach Fl
Feb 21, 2013
Hunter 46 Point Richmond, CA
Ouch!! Consider removing the manual switch. My Hunter 46 engine fire supression system is automatic without a manual switch.


Mar 23, 2017
Belliure 41 Snug Harbor, Lake Champlain
Way more modern and fancy than any sailboat I've ever owned...

Do you know what kind of fire extinguishing material was released? What kind of engine do you have? Gasoline or diesel?

Apr 2, 2021
Hunter 38 Ft. Pierce
Was the engine running? Seconding dLj's comment could the material have been ingested by the engine?
Feb 10, 2004
Hunter 40.5 Warwick, RI
And who was the dimwit (IMHO) that installed the fire extinguisher system with a (presumably) unmarked switch on the console?

Hopefully there was an engine shutdown controller that stopped the engine before any serious ingestion.
Oct 24, 2010
Hunter 30 Everett, WA
What you need to do all depends on what type of material was in your fire extinguishing system. If it was a gas such as Halon all you need to do is recharge the fire extinguishing system and properly label the switch. Halon will not hurt your engine if it was a powder that's a different answer, although I doubt someone would use a powder in an engine room system. Look around the engine and see if you see a bunch of powder or if it looks as clean as when you start it out.


Jan 20, 2005
Nauticat 321 pilothouse 32 Erie PA
if it's an oem extinguisher install you should be able to get lots more info from hunter. was your diesel running ? if your diesel has an air filter on the intake, you can figure out if particulates could have gotten past the air filter to muck up your injectors. sounds like a good thing to report to insurance just in case...
Dec 2, 2003
Hunter 260 winnipeg, Manitoba
Aug 10, 2020
Catalina C25 Rocky Mount
Where did the $800 go?
We charge 2 hours to clean it out of outboard cowlings and powerhead, 4-6 hours to clean it out of an i/o bilge.... It's $125/hr. Mercs are good about frying voltage regs. People freak out from the smoke and fire extinguisher them. Most i/o's are due to impeller failure and burning exhaust hoses. No real fire, just rubber smoke, but people hit the extinguisher button.....