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Old 10-04-2014, 04:31 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by AKDoug View Post
My boat has check valves in the bilge pump lines, and my surveyor noted that they violate the "rules"......My shower box works perfectly...
Doug: Not trying to be funny or start a fight but did you ask your surveyor, "what rules".

Also, the Johnson Pump Shower Sump and the Rule Shower Sump system, both have check valves as part of their design.
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Old 10-04-2014, 05:57 PM   #42
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It's probably not such a good idea to have a switch on the bilge pump at the panel. Best practices would have a three way switch somewhere out of the way where it won't be inadvertently switched off. Separately fused and wired directly
To a good battery so that when every other thing is turned off-off-off your bilge pump will still come on.
Agreed. Unfortunately, it came this way when I bought it and from the panel, I can deduce it probably came from the factory this way. The surveyor did not comment on that although he did note the water in the bilge and the pump not working.

You really bring up a much deeper question regarding my boat. How service is identified on the electrical panel doesn't seem to have any rhyme or reason. In fact the starting instructions from the PO state to turn the switch to the house batteries, start the engine, turn the switch to both and then turn on the refrigerator switch. I haven't quite figured out what is on the refrigerator switch circuit besides the fridge but it must be something important. I suspect the whole panel is a candidate for rewiring.
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Old 10-04-2014, 06:43 PM   #43
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Water can also enter through the anchor locker. My anchor locker drains to the bilge. Water comes in where the chain enters the windless when it rain, spray, or waves coming over the bow. I been meaning to get a cover made for the windless. A little water is acceptable, but 4-5 inches i would be looking for a leak somewhere. Good Luck!
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Old 10-04-2014, 06:56 PM   #44
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My overflow from my water tanks empties into the bilge.
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Old 10-05-2014, 01:22 AM   #45
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Failure due to clogging

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry M View Post
Doug: Not trying to be funny or start a fight but did you ask your surveyor, "what rules".

Also, the Johnson Pump Shower Sump and the Rule Shower Sump system, both have check valves as part of their design.
There is a big difference between a shower drain and a bilge drain. You can only get as much water in the boat as the shower is long. The bilge pump is supposed to pump OUT the boat, assuming the ocean is trying to come in. There are going to be things floating in it, and if they get in a valve it will plug.

Captain Frank Lanier, who writes regularly for "Cruising World Magazine" was my surveyor. I believe the standard is from ABYC, but it was listed in secondary priorities on my survey for upgrade.

It also makes sense. As does filtering your shower before it goes into the bilge pump, like your shower box does. No offense taken, hopefully none given.
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Old 10-05-2014, 08:34 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by windmill29130 View Post
Water can also enter through the anchor locker. My anchor locker drains to the bilge. Water comes in where the chain enters the windless when it rain, spray, or waves coming over the bow. I been meaning to get a cover made for the windless. A little water is acceptable, but 4-5 inches i would be looking for a leak somewhere. Good Luck!
It would seem a worthwhile project to seal up your anchor locker and install an external drain. This prevents the smelly growth of mud based algae in your bilge, keeping mold in check and taking a major step towards a dry bilge.
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Old 10-05-2014, 09:13 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by windmill29130 View Post
Water can also enter through the anchor locker. My anchor locker drains to the bilge. Water comes in where the chain enters the windless when it rain, spray, or waves coming over the bow. I been meaning to get a cover made for the windless. A little water is acceptable, but 4-5 inches i would be looking for a leak somewhere. Good Luck!
maybe something like this would help, it works well on mine. Made it from a piece of scrap Al.
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Old 10-05-2014, 09:53 AM   #48
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I dunno. After 25 years of owning a wooden boat, a little water in the bilge sumps is normal and somewhat nostalgic. Its when there is an abnormal amount of water in the bilge that I start to worry.
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Old 10-05-2014, 10:06 AM   #49
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maybe something like this would help, it works well on mine. Made it from a piece of scrap Al.
Nice
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Old 10-05-2014, 11:12 AM   #50
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Marin - thank you. So it is the packing gland. What I found, when I looked the boat over, was a very steady drip, frm the port gland. When I posed the issue to a friend on the dock, he told me that the drip should be a lot less. So I did my best to balance the "plate" where the bolt pass though, then tightened the bolts till the drip was a lot less.
The starbourd gland was bone dry. I figured it was over tightened, & did the same thing with it as I did with the port side.
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Old 10-05-2014, 11:58 AM   #51
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bige pump counters

While were on the topic of bilge pumps I would like to ask about bilge pump counters. A little about my boat. It is a 41' Marine Trader with a stuffing box using teflon stuffing. The stuffing box drips and in the Winter lay up I tighten up the stuffing box. The problem with water in the bilge is it adds humidity to the inside of the boat.

When I bought the boat it had a rule 3500 bilge pump and an 1" to 2" of water, with an external float switch. I installed an extra bilge pump, a rule 500, with an internal switch and brought the water down to 1/4" to 1" of water, it cycles at about an inch of water and the bilge wets to about 4' along the bilge. Both bilge pumps are directly connected to the house bank, with the house bank connected to a Xantrax 2000 inverter/smart charger, plugged into A/C power at the dock. The rule 3500, with its float switch set higher never comes on unless I turn it on or flood the bilge to test it.

I was thinking about adding a bilge pump counter, they want $80 or something at Westmarine, and all it is is counter. Do they have a counter you can hook up to a computer and get a read out as to how many times it came on and when it came on. And yes I know it would be simple to just put a post it note by the counter with the time when you reset counter and the pump has just cycled, but is there something out there?
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Old 10-19-2014, 01:15 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
There are more than a few ways water can get into a bilge... some more are through an anchor line hawse pipe or engineroom vents also.....

While it is possible to have a completely dry bilge...it's not the end of the world if it isn't.

Hopefully the water is no deeper than near the bottom of the lowest automatic bilge pump.

Waterlines higher than that suggest someone wasn't paying close enough attention to the boat.

But multiple sources , even condensation inside the hull can lead to water...while a bone dry bilge would be nice...few boats ever attain that status and run just fine for decades.


Good advice.

I would certainly have things like showers drain into a box in the bilge that is pumped out separately. That way, it helps to know where your water is coming from.

When it rains my bilge pump does go off once or twice, you definitely need a counter.

the last day on the Atlantic it went off 250 times!
I saw later that the drain hose for the lazerette had come lose, so all the water on the hatch was getting the lazerette and then the ER bilge.

But now that I tightened the stuffing box, it only goes off once in a while, again rain water.

Lastly, I don't believe in a totally dry bilge. I like that my bilge pumps stays wet and works occasionally. I;m sure the failure rate of pumps kept dry and asked to work rarely is very high, but it doesn't look as good in the ads.
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Old 10-20-2014, 01:17 PM   #53
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A counter doesn't have to be fancy. Radio Shack may carry one. I just reset mine to 0 when I leave the boat (if it is not already) and check it next time. I average about one cycle per 2 days, mostly from rain. The thing I look for is any increase from baseline which would indicate a problem. The actual number isn't important. The thing I'd like to know is what kills bilge switches. Is it the wet, or the motion, or Rule using disintegrating components?
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