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Old 04-07-2016, 04:30 PM   #1
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New holding tank gauge

My 2002 Pilot 34 has, for lack of a better term, a "binary" holding tank gauge. The red light comes on when it is full! Has anyone installed a more sophisticated gauge? I understand there are ones that can be installed on the exterior of the tank? I'm not sure it is even humanly possible to access the tank, but I'll try to get my 6' 4" frame up there.
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Old 04-07-2016, 04:36 PM   #2
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Jack...

I installed one of the external type on a previously owned Carver.
No idea what access is like on the Pilot.
I was very pleased - the one I had came w/ sensors for 2 tanks and capability to add 2 more w/ addn'l sensors. I used it for bath black and fresh water tanks and as I said it worked well and never failed me in approx 10 yrs of use.
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Old 04-07-2016, 05:18 PM   #3
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My 2003 Pilot 34 does have a factory installed holding tank gauge. It sort of works. I will be down on the boat this weekend and will look and report on access and brand.


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Old 04-07-2016, 05:28 PM   #4
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Mine was an internal gauge, but I found this guy a delight to deal with:

Monitoring Systems

I have heard nothing but good things about the external sensor version from those who have them.
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Old 04-07-2016, 05:54 PM   #5
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That's the same one I use. Very easy to set up.


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Old 04-07-2016, 06:04 PM   #6
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Mine was an internal gauge, but I found this guy a delight to deal with:

Monitoring Systems

I have heard nothing but good things about the external sensor version from those who have them.
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Old 04-07-2016, 07:33 PM   #7
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Quote:
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My 2002 Pilot 34 has, for lack of a better term, a "binary" holding tank gauge. The red light comes on when it is full! Has anyone installed a more sophisticated gauge? I understand there are ones that can be installed on the exterior of the tank? I'm not sure it is even humanly possible to access the tank, but I'll try to get my 6' 4" frame up there.
The Profile gauges, made by Ferirello Sales. com and sold under the SCAD private label brand name are the best on the market: Scad Tank Monitors
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Old 04-07-2016, 08:15 PM   #8
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I also have a "red light" tank monitor. Dont recall the make. The light goes on when it is 3/4 full. Seems strange that a monitor would be set up to light up only when the tank is full. You might want to investigate and see if thats actually how its set up. Im not interested in my tank's fullness at any point less than 3/4 full. When I see the red light I know its time to plan a pump out.
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Old 04-07-2016, 09:19 PM   #9
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When I see the red light I know its time to plan a pump out.

Your gauge--which is almost certainly a SeaLand Tankwatch I, which is designed to only let you know when the tank is 3/4 ((which actually means 1, MAYBE 2 flushes away from overflowing).. And it's not strange at all to the few who know that USCG regs require that waste tanks be equipped with a means of determining when a tank is 3/4 full, which is SUPPOSED to let owners known that they need to pump out before the tank oveflows. So yours is actually doing what it's designed to do...It's just not doing what you want it to do--let you know how much is in the tank any time you want to know.

If you want a gauge that does any more, check out the link to the SCAD systems iny previous reply.
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:21 AM   #10
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I've just started using a Maretron immersion pressure sensor for my black water tank. So far it works great and is extremely accurate. The real question is how quickly it will become fouled as pretty much all in-tank senders seem to. I'll know more in a few months.

FWIW, ultrasonic level sounders don't seem to work well. That's what I had before the immersion sensor and it worked poorly, presumably because of scum on the water surface interfering with the echo return.
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:26 AM   #11
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I installed the SCAD external monitors on both of our holding tanks and I'm very pleased with them. I used the existing wires from the Sealand monitors, so didn't have to run new wiring. And yes, our Mainship 430 has two heads with two separate holding tanks. Redundancy is great.
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:30 AM   #12
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Those of us with stainless steel tanks have very few options when it comes to affordable tank level monitors. Indeed I now recall that my level indicator is a Tankwatch. Has worked flawlessly for past 5 years.
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Old 04-08-2016, 06:22 AM   #13
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Those of us with stainless steel tanks have very few options when it comes to affordable tank level monitors. Indeed I now recall that my level indicator is a Tankwatch. Has worked flawlessly for past 5 years.
The SCAD monitor can be bought with an "in tank" sender vs an external one for metal or composite tanks.
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Old 04-08-2016, 07:25 AM   #14
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The SCAD monitor can be bought with an "in tank" sender vs an external one for metal or composite tanks.
The "in tank" sender is encased in a pvc tube, which protects it from coming in contact with the tank contents, preventing it from ever becoming clogged by the animal fats in waste as exposed internal inevitably do. Practical Sailor rated the SCAD systems #1.

Fwiw, there are several options...the "solo" is a single tank monitor. There's also one that lets you put up to 8 tanks--waste, fuel and water--on the same panel, which can be very useful on boats that have more than one of each type.
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Old 04-08-2016, 09:40 AM   #15
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I'm a little confused; why not just buy direct from Feriello? Worked for me and his support was excellent.
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Old 04-08-2016, 11:07 AM   #16
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My 2002 Pilot 34 has, for lack of a better term, a "binary" holding tank gauge. The red light comes on when it is full! Has anyone installed a more sophisticated gauge? I understand there are ones that can be installed on the exterior of the tank? I'm not sure it is even humanly possible to access the tank, but I'll try to get my 6' 4" frame up there.

I've been gradually switching some gauges from analog to CruzPro digital, most recently the fuel tank level gauges. They also make such for holding tanks and freshwater tanks.

Said to work with any sender (so far that has been true) so you could conceivably use the same sender you have, switch only the gauge, calibrate, done.

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Old 04-08-2016, 11:40 AM   #17
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I've been gradually switching some gauges from analog to CruzPro digital, most recently the fuel tank level gauges. They also make such for holding tanks and freshwater tanks.

Said to work with any sender (so far that has been true) so you could conceivably use the same sender you have, switch only the gauge, calibrate, done.

-Chris
The Feriello gauges also are designed for virtually any sender, though their senders are really nice.
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