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Old 08-17-2015, 02:46 PM   #21
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Yea, that's why we won't hookup. Can't forget then either.
Sometimes its a contest over which has better pressure. But as a liveaboard I like the convenience of dock water.
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Old 08-17-2015, 03:08 PM   #22
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There are flow restrictors that will cut the flow of water after a preset value so as to prevent you from sinking your boat with dock water.
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Old 08-17-2015, 03:37 PM   #23
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I turn everything off except the battery charger and the auto bilge pumps
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Old 08-17-2015, 04:04 PM   #24
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I do turn the water off to my house when not in residence especially during the winter months. Furthermore, I now REQUIRE my water customers to turn their's off when not in residence during winter months. I am now too old to spend my winters walking up ice slick mountains looking at water meters to find leaks in unattended homes.
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Old 08-17-2015, 04:27 PM   #25
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I have two pumps, a 110v (high pressure and flow rate) and 12v. If I remember, I turn off the 110v, when I remember, mostly because I am not sure it won't be damaged or ruined by running dry, but do leave on the 12v.

I need the water for ice cube makers, as well was water maker flushing. And it can be a PIA to re-prime.

My biggest concern in leaving on even the 12v pump is developing a leak and doing damage to the floors or other woodwork. One time our cocktail ice maker developed a major leak, and even though we were on board at least 30 gallons poured out before we noticed. The boat holds 300 gallons of freshwater in two tanks, a 100 gallon main tank, which is gravity fed by a 200 gallon reserve tank. I keep the reserve tank feed valve closed, in part to limit the worst case if something goes wrong while I am not on board.
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Old 08-17-2015, 05:17 PM   #26
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We always turn off the fresh water pump (along with every other DC powered device) when we leave the boat. We've had a fresh water pump develolp a problem with it's own pressure-holding switch so it would cycle on briefly every few minutes. Lived with it for a couple of years (turning the water pump off at night) but finally got around to changing out the pump a few months ago. But we still turn the pump off when we're not using the boat.

We've also had a plasic in-line water filter break while we were on the boat and this caused the pump to run continuously. We had a spare filter so this was an easy fix although it occured while we on someone elses's boat for the evening and only learned of this when I went back to our boat to get something and found the bilge pump cycling on and off.

While it's true a few hundred gallons of fresh water in the bilge won't change the weight of the boat or sink it, it could get things wet that you don't want wet if the bilge pump(s) fail to take care of it.

The only thing we leave on 24/7/365 is the refrigerator but it's AC/DC. The bilge pump is not connected to the DC panel so turning off all the breakers and the DC master does not affect the bilge pump.

Don't have a need for a watermaker so don't know how its requirements might change our current procedures.
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Old 08-17-2015, 05:29 PM   #27
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When not at the boat I turn off everything except the separately fused auto bilge pumps. When at a marina, I do the same except also leave the battery charger on.

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Old 08-17-2015, 06:31 PM   #28
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Geeez Kevin...like you said...a well maintained boat "probably" will never have a problem.


You have bilge pumps that are powered indefinitely through battery charging...and even the smallest keeps up with a fresh water pump/sysem.


Fresh water pups ca run and have for many days if not months and I have never heard of one starting a fire...they are designed to run dry.


PLUS!!!!!! You are way cool and have your boat monitored via the internet...so you should at any point be able to ta in and see if something is wrong.


Leave it on and just ensure the backups you have...nothing wrong with conventional wisdom in the boating world...I just find it based on very limited real life experience.
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Old 08-17-2015, 06:31 PM   #29
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I would never connect to dock water. I just use it to fill the tanks. I visit the boat every other day, its only 2 miles away, so I leave most house stuff on including the water pump simply for convenience. The water pump is needed for autoflush of the watermaker. Were I planning to be away for any length of time then I would turn more things off.

All my systems were upgraded or replaced at refit so I have confidence in the wiring and system integrity. Thinking back to the condition of stuff when I bought the boat, with all kinds of poor R&M by the PO and his car mechanic employee then I would still be doing what some above are. It comes down to what you know you can rely on and trust on an old boat.

But I do have the nav stuff off, so am not broadcasting AIS at the dock amongst other things. Anything related to running the engines or being underway is off also, such as the compressor for the air horn. Its loud enough to wake me with a start if I am overnighting.
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Old 08-17-2015, 06:43 PM   #30
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Ok, just a little FYI on watermakers.

They require either flusing or pickling when not in use for more than a few days.

Thats because the organic matter present in sea water starts to rot. Once all the oxygen is used up then anerobic bacteria starts taking over. This anerobic bacteria is hard on watermaker membranes.

pickling is basically flushing the system with a anti bacteria agent.

Regular flushing keeps fresh oxygenated water in the system, so anerobic bacteria cannot grow.

An auto flush system turns on your boost pump for 3-4 minutes every 5 days or so to automatiically flush the system.
Ok, I need water maker lessons here.
- If you are gone from the boat does the water maker not sit idle?
- If sea water is the only source of anaerobic bacteria why, once all the sea water is removed, do you need to continuously flush?

Now the Rube Goldberg assists Red Green part:
If the flush occurs at regular intervals and for a specific time, could you not install a timer in the pump circuit to coincide with the flush?

Also, some insurance policies might have something to say about equipment during prolonged absences.
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Old 08-17-2015, 06:44 PM   #31
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Quote:
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Geeez Kevin...like you said...a well maintained boat "probably" will never have a problem.


You have bilge pumps that are powered indefinitely through battery charging...and even the smallest keeps up with a fresh water pump/sysem.


Fresh water pups ca run and have for many days if not months and I have never heard of one starting a fire...they are designed to run dry.


PLUS!!!!!! You are way cool and have your boat monitored via the internet...so you should at any point be able to ta in and see if something is wrong.


Leave it on and just ensure the backups you have...nothing wrong with conventional wisdom in the boating world...I just find it based on very limited real life experience.
That's what I'm thinking as well.

I don't have water leaks at home either and I don't turn off the well every time we leave.

Worst case is I have to replace a pump someday. That's my real risk.
That will save me from having to pickle the water maker every time I leave the boat for a week.
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Old 08-17-2015, 06:49 PM   #32
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Ok, I need water maker lessons here.
- If you are gone from the boat does the water maker not sit idle?
- If sea water is the only source of anaerobic bacteria why, once all the sea water is removed, do you need to continuously flush?

Now the Rube Goldberg assists Red Green part:
If the flush occurs at regular intervals and for a specific time, could you not install a timer in the pump circuit to coincide with the flush?

Also, some insurance policies might have something to say about equipment during prolonged absences.
The thought is you never remove all the organic matter so flushing is needed.

Yes I could install a relay but don't see now that I've thought about it a real reason to do so.

The more I think about this the more I think there is zero reason not to leave the potable water system pressurized.
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Old 08-17-2015, 07:02 PM   #33
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That's what I'm thinking as well.

I don't have water leaks at home either and I don't turn off the well every time we leave.

Worst case is I have to replace a pump someday. That's my real risk.
That will save me from having to pickle the water maker every time I leave the boat for a week.
5 minutes of soul searching and a little practical experience goes a long way to quell the nervousness that is rampant in boating.

Sure...100% go for it...nope never gonna happen any which way but loose... Let your intelligence be your guide over a random mass of opinion.
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Old 08-17-2015, 07:08 PM   #34
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Guys, low pressure cut off functionality is readily available in pressure switches, both external and internal to the pump. Many, if not most fresh water pumps are not designed for run-dry operation and there is no reason to lose one for that reason. Here is an example:

Amazon.com: Square D FSG2J21M4CP 30/50 PSI Standard Pressure Switch with Low Pressure Cutoff: Home Improvement
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Old 08-17-2015, 07:22 PM   #35
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are ignition protected, thermally protected and can run dry without damage.....

Aqua King II Freshwater Pump, 4 GPM, 12V
Aqua King II Freshwater Pump, 4 GPM, 12V
SHURFLO Aqua King II Freshwater Pump, 4 GPM, 12V

SHURFLO Aqua King II Freshwater Pump, 4 GPM, 12V | West Marine

Typical in my experience.....
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:01 PM   #36
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Thermal protection kicks in on those; they are not continuous duty. The point is that there is no reason to have a fresh water pump system that runs forever or burns itself out (motor or head).
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:54 PM   #37
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Do you leave your water pump on???

Would you leave your AC ON while gone from boat for extended period? Why not? Isn't the water maker pumping an approximately equal volume each hour?

If my boat was in a slip, if I knew the plumbing were OK I would sleep aboard. But I wouldn't leave anything pumping constantly while gone.

On a mooring.... Never.
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:41 PM   #38
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Removed the city water connection from the boat during the refit. 350 gallons of storage, so need for city hook up. Turn the pump off whenever leaving the boat for more than a day. Nothing needs water if I'm not on the boat.

At the home in Maryland, I turn the breaker off for the well pump if no one will be around for a few days. It's an older home with older plumbing. Have visions of a pipe failing in the 2nd floor bathroom and causing damage on both floors. Nothing in that house needs water if I'm not there.

In my Florida home, city water stays on all the time to keep the swimming pool full. Before I fabricated an auto fill for the pool, the guy who takes care of it would add water with a garden hose and turn it off after cleaning another nearby pool. Did you know that you can add 60,000 gallons of water to a pool in a week.....but it wasn't his fault.

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Old 08-17-2015, 09:59 PM   #39
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Would you leave your AC ON while gone from boat for extended period? Why not? Isn't the water maker pumping an approximately equal volume each hour?

If my boat was in a slip, if I knew the plumbing were OK I would sleep aboard. But I wouldn't leave anything pumping constantly while gone.

On a mooring.... Never.

Yes when the water maker is in operation. In flushing mode it's back flushing (usually goes through a charcoal filter then enters after low pressure feed pump). So the only water at risk of entering the boat is fresh.
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Old 08-17-2015, 11:19 PM   #40
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Ok, just a little FYI on watermakers.

They require either flusing or pickling when not in use for more than a few days.
You definitely do not have to prickle a water maker if you are not going to be using it for just a few days. It's more like weeks.

But the reality is, I've fired up watermakers that have neither been flushed nor used for many months and in all cases they have made good water.

While flushing and pickling are great and should be done as recommended, in many cases it's not the end of the world if you don't.
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