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Old 04-21-2016, 06:44 AM   #1
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Exclamation Blackwater tank discharge pump problem


My black-water holding tank has a Whale Gulper pump to remove the contents. During a recent trip to Port Welshpool, Victoria from Tasmania, the head contents were diverted from overboard to the holding tanks during the two days in Welshpool harbour confines. Once we were off shore we attempted to discharge the contents of the holding tank. Guess what? The pump would not draw from the black-water tank.
The problem discovered was dried effluent causing the Gulper pump valves to not seal correctly. After a thorough cleaning of the elastomeric flap valves and the surrounding seat, then re-assembly, the pump operates again.
I then discharged the contents of the tank, added about 20 litres of clean fresh water and flushed that out also.
Now to my question. Does anybody know how to stop a re-occurrence of the problem?
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Old 04-21-2016, 06:46 AM   #2
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"Does anybody know how to stop a re-occurrence of the problem?"

Remount the pump so it stays wet at all times and can not dry out.
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Old 04-21-2016, 07:01 AM   #3
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"Does anybody know how to stop a re-occurrence of the problem?"

Remount the pump so it stays wet at all times and can not dry out.
Mounting the pump lower could be a real mess if it had to be removed again.
Rather fix a dry pump than a wet
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Old 04-21-2016, 08:53 AM   #4
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Mounting the pump lower could be a real mess if it had to be removed again.
Rather fix a dry pump than a wet
Definitely agree with this - its a real s%*t of a job and the smelly stuff gets into the bilge no matter how cleverly you try to stop it. Had to run 00s of litres of water through the bilge to flush it (that's not a pun!)
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Old 04-21-2016, 09:04 AM   #5
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Greetings,
Mr. 1500. How about a valve between the tank and the pump and a "T" between said valve and the pump with a flushing port (FW hose fitting perhaps) so after evacuation, the valve is closed and the pump and hoses could be flushed with fresh water in anticipation of the next use?
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Old 04-21-2016, 10:02 AM   #6
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Does anybody know how to stop a re-occurrence of the problem?
Rinse it out by running clean water through the tank--which you should do to get rid of sludge anyway--when you know it won't be used again for a while. Best if it's fresh water (most pumpout facilities do have a hose you can use for this), but even sea water is better than nothing. Put the water into the tank via the deck pumpout fitting 'cuz that sends it into the tank at the bottom so it can stir up sludge and hold it in suspension so it can be pumped out and/or dumped via the onboard pump. It's not necessary to fill the tank, just a few gallons is enough. If you're at a pumpout, you'll have to pump out, then repeat till you're pumping only clean water before you can flush out the Whale...add a few gallons, then let the water run while you operate it. You can use a washdown pump if away from the dock...add a few gallons, then let the water while you clean out the pump. However, it's a good idea to follow up a sea water rinse with fresh water because salt and sea water minerals need to be flushed out too.

It's especially important to thoroughly flush out the tank and plumbing in preparation for winterizing.
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Old 04-21-2016, 10:10 AM   #7
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Old 04-22-2016, 07:19 AM   #8
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IF a fantastic rinse could solve the problem life would be grand.

ON a brand new tank I would have a 3 inch RV discharge spun in , install a quality ($40 Dupree valve not a $9 Camping world )and use the discharge port to mount the waste discharge pump.

No duck bill valve would be in the system and mounted low it wouls always be wet.

The crown to the system would be a 120V maceriator pump (will work fine on a cheap inverter) that seem to last far longer than the DC pumps.

Close the discharge valve , put a pail under , and the pump could be replaced as fast as you can do a single hose clamp.

Sadly builders do not create servicable boats because there is no demand from the fir$t buyer .

Fuel and water tanks come to mind.
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Old 04-23-2016, 04:32 PM   #9
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