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Old 06-14-2011, 07:59 PM   #1
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"best" head for freshwater flush

Well, my wife informed me this weekend that I need put swapping out at least the master stateroom, if not both stateroom, head(s) ASAP with something "better." *All our boats until now have had vacuflush heads which we were happy with. *Currently we have electric heads. *Not sure of age/make/model but basically, they are loud, kind of smelly, a bit "gross" I am even told. *So now I am tasked with possibly upgrading our marine sanitation system. *I have simultaneously fighting an odor issue that i have all but determined is either emitting from the forward head or the holding tank or the lines up there. *Holding tank is a semi-new poly tank of approximately 40 gallons just under the forward head (or just aft of it actually) and both heads pump to it. *So there is the back story!

I don't want to spend a fortune but when the wife tells me I should upgrade a boat system, whom am I to argue?!? *Oh that she would insist I install new dual helm radar, bow thruster, pull the engine, paint the bilge from top to bottom, etc. but alas, she only wants new heads. *haha

1) What do you think is the "best" reasonably cost (AKA $500-700 per head) unit out there? *Freshwater flush is pretty much going to be the only thing we want if I make the change. *We're raw water flush now which is ok since we are on freshwater but not if we go to salt for a season and we hold 200 gallons so freshwater with low flow would be fine. *Vacuflush by far would be my wife's preference but a SUPER quiet, clean, non-gross electric head could be ok, "maybe."

2) I am debating installing a new tank just for the aft head and switch it to a 2 tank system. *Part of the problem I think with the aft head is having to pipe everything forward through the bilge to the one holding tank. *I think I can fit a second aft tank in for the aft head- thoughts??

3) DIY or hire it out??? *

I am thinking to just upgrade the entire system for both heads as I think it would eliminate the odor at the forward stateroom which is where the tank is at. *If I could fix that little issue that would be worth some serious $$$$. *I got rid of most of the diesel smell by fixing the diesel leaks @ engine and cleaning the bilge, only to find an underlying head odor at the front stateroom. *

I guess i am being lazy and not googling away to find these answers but hey- TF rocks!
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:21 PM   #2
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"best" head for freshwater flush

Raritan Marine Elegance http://www.raritaneng.com/products/t...e_elegance.htm is the best "bang for the buck" in electric macerating toilets today. About $600 including the "smart flush" panel. The Admiral is guaranteed to love it.

Although it'll solve a lot of your problems, it's unlikely that a new toilet will eliminate* odor inside the boat. Odds are, that's due to permeated sanitation hoses. We prob'ly should talk via email about what's needed and what's not on YOUR boat.


-- Edited by HeadMistress on Tuesday 14th of June 2011 08:27:40 PM
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Old 06-14-2011, 10:11 PM   #3
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RE: "best" head for freshwater flush

Tony, the vent hose on my holding tank is small in diameter I believe 5/8", and takes a very crooked route up to the through hull vent. I plan to replace it soon with a larger dia hose which will have a more direct discharge no kinks or dips to collect moisture.
Peggy has posted quite a bit about the need for good ventilation to reduce odor from the holding tanks. I may look at adding another vent on the Port side as well.
On our Monks we have a long run from the aft head to the holding tank, several owners have recommended to use the fwd head rather than the aft because it takes lots of water for the aft head discharge hose to flush to the holding tank. As you mentioned the fwd toilet sits almost directly over the holding tank so needs much less water and the holding tank fills less quickly.
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Old 06-14-2011, 11:03 PM   #4
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RE: "best" head for freshwater flush

Don't confuse odor inside the boat with holding tank odor...'cuz unless a tank is leaking, odor from inside the tank has only one place to go: out the tank vent. So the tank, unless it's leaking, is rarely if ever the source of odor inside a boat. Increasing ventilation to the tank can eliminate odor out the tank vent, but that won't cure odor inside the boat. The most common sources of odor inside a boat are permeated sanitation hoses and wet dirty bilges and sumps. Stagnant sea water trapped in a head intake also stinks, but that's a temporary odor that flushing the toilet when you come back aboard gets rid of, and it's always confined to the head.

So I'd advise both of you to test your hoses for permeation and think about adding another tank to reduce the long run from one of the toilets.. Or better yet, installing a Type I MSD (treatment device). Both of you are in waters where the discharge of treated waste is legal...and also cleaner than the discharge from most sewage treatment plants. Whichever you decide to do, I'll be glad to help you spec it out.
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Old 06-15-2011, 08:15 AM   #5
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RE: "best" head for freshwater flush

Peggy- I'd love to talk with you more about our boat's sanitation, either online or offline. You mentioned email but I don't have yours. You can reach me via Anthony (at) BoatsAreFun.com

I am leaning towards adding a second holding tank for the aft head to eliminate the loooong run to the forward 40 gallon holding tank...would eleminate one more hose running through the bilge, reduce possible leaks, reduce amount of water needed, etc. I "think" I have space to put a 2nd tank in but it would either be level with the aft head or possibly above it- not sure if that would be an issue?
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Old 06-22-2011, 03:19 PM   #6
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RE: "best" head for freshwater flush

FYI Tony, once we swapped out the heads the odor is GONE.* it was all from the sea critters in the lines... Our boat dock neighbors even noticed and commented.
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