Help! Pump metled in the heat.

I can’t believe this happened. My bilge pump has been sitting on my deck held by bungees all summer. We had a heat wave last week. Yesterday I checked the pump (was going to move its position) and realized that the bungees had dug into the plastic pump sides and deformed them seriously!

I assumed outdoor gear like this was made to handle outdoor conditions.

What can I do to re-form the pump body? It won’t work as it is, since the barrel is now crimped in 2 places.


for a new one. It probably isnt worth the waste of time and possible loss of proper functioning to try to fix it. But you could leave it in the hot sun, perhaps wrapped in black plastic, and then try to straighten the barrel by moving the plunger. Probably wont work though.

It sounds like you are keeping it under the bungies at all times, and in the sun. I wouldn’t do either, the the sake of the pump, bungies, and boat.

Contact the mfg.
It should tolerate conditions like that. Ask for a replacement.

Storing on deck
Is it a good idea to store pumps on the deck? I have been told by some very experienced paddlers that pumps should be inside the cockpit. May just be a matter opinion but your melted pump seems to backup their preference for storing inside the hull.

On the few river trips that I carry one, it’s stowed between the seat and hull below the thigh pads. Used mainly for spraying over heated tubers on the river.

I did exactly that. Went back to REI, and they replaced it without any questions. Unfortunately, I’d bought it on sale and the replacement wasn’t on sale, so I had to pay the difference. Lesson learned!

FWIW, I can’t see putting the pump inside the kayak, when the instructors tell you to have it outside ready to use in an emergency. I can certainly see that I will never store anything in the boat outside for any length of time!

If you may need to use the pump in a situation where pulling your skirt would be bad, it has to be on deck. Or if you have a rather small cockpit and it would challenge a wet re-entry ( me). But it does then bear watching when towing because it can grab a line.

The latest seems to be for it to be inside. Fine if you have the choice, but at some point you have to look at your specific situation.

How are you going to use it w/o pulling your skirt?

Pump Stored in Cockpit
I have a QCC 10x. There is a space between the inside of the kayak at the shear line and a support piece on either side which secures the backband. That space is just wide enough for a bilge pump. There is also a pad eye on the cockpit side of the rear hatch to which the back band is also attached. I tied a nylon cord about 2 - 2.5 feet long to the pad eye. On the free end of the cord I attached a cheap keychain carabiner. Then I slide the pump into the space described above and clip the carabiner through the pump handle. I am a small paddler, and the intake end of the pump does not rub against my leg at all when I’m paddling. Should I capsize and miss my roll, the pump may slide part way out of its space, but it’s still attached to the boat along that inner side so I’ve never had a problem with the cord getting tangled up in anything. Once I’m back in the boat I pump out the water with the cord/carabiner still attached to the handle. Should I have a problem and have to let go of it quickly, it’s still attached to the boat and easy to grab. Perhaps your boat will allow you to rig up something similar. Good luck! wd

Don’t get the question
Yes, access to it becomes a consideration when storing the pump inside the cockpit. But that got said above.

There are good reasons for the pump to work inside for many, since you only need the pump if you are unable to empty the cockpit by other means. If you use a decent skirt it’ll limit the incoming to a safe level. If you are paddling with a companion and capsize then exit, the water gets dumped as part of the rescue. If you are paddling alone and feel that you can rely on your roll, there’s no water to empty from a capsize.

Various Pumps on the market
My vote is for the “short and large diameter” type.

Sitting is tough for arm movement up and down !

Get max volume in a short stroke over the cockpit edge.

Go with the Harmony brand pump

Pump I’m using
Is the Seattle Sports pump. Works well enough for me. REI replaced the melted one with a newer version.

I still can’t believe the pump melted in the heat! Yes, it got into the 90s for a couple of days, but this is the balmy SF Bay Area, not the Mojave Desert!

You can be sure this one will reside on the boat only when on the water from now on. I do learn, even if slowly…