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Old 08-13-2016, 06:45 PM   #21
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We live aboard (going on 8 years) and we do hook up to shore water. So far since Jan 1 we have cruised about 2,000 miles and been in 35 marinas and private docks. We hooked up to city water in 28-29 of those places. We have generally found that our ship board water pressure is higher than shore pressure and generally we find that if we leave the water pump breaker on, our ship's water is consumed as our on board pump supplements the shore water. I do not think shore water is necessarily that much higher pressure than our on board water. Our experience in several dozen cities and towns indicates that it is not. We turn off the water if we are going to leave the boat for a day but otherwise we do not turn it off. I have however intentionally opened up the shore water and flooded the bilge to see what would happen. Our primary bilge pump can stay ahead of the city water and we have a secondary that is even bigger. So if we go to the grocery store or to a friend's boat for dinner we generally do not turn off the dock water, unless we are leaving for the weekend. As far as the BoatUS article, Back in the 1990s I worked with the Boat US Technical exchange to research the Boat US claims and see what was sinking boats. Dock water did not and does not show up on the radar. So for each of us it is a personal decision, hook up to the city or not. The statistics do not support the worry and there are technical solutions that indicate that this is not a very big risk.
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Old 08-13-2016, 07:22 PM   #22
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I would say to each his own except to say this. Those of you worried about a 3/4" hose sinking your boat a bilge pump upgrade project is in your very near future I'd hope. Unless your current pump is just for show because you rely on a magic wand to dewater your boat.
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Old 08-13-2016, 07:53 PM   #23
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I would say to each his own except to say this. Those of you worried about a 3/4" hose sinking your boat a bilge pump upgrade project is in your very near future I'd hope. Unless your current pump is just for show because you rely on a magic wand to dewater your boat.
The 90psi municipal water where i live would easily overpower every 12VDC bilge pumping system I have seen.
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Old 08-13-2016, 07:56 PM   #24
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I suppose you folks who never use city water for fear of flooding never plug into shore power, or turn it off when away from the boat or not use it at all? A lot more fires from bad connections than sinkings from flooding due to bad plumbing and a mediocre bilge
.
+1
IMHO most shore water issues are due to hi pressure...use a pressure regulator and you shouldn't blow any more fittings than w a pump. Hoses jury rigged is not a quality system...use pex & proper fittings...no problem
Disconnect when not aboard.
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Old 08-13-2016, 08:03 PM   #25
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A lot more fires from bad connections than sinkings from flooding due to bad plumbing and a mediocre bilge pump system.
I was referring to this part which is incorrect and not borne out by any insurance claims statistics.
Of course id you can back that up with statistics ...............
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Old 08-13-2016, 08:35 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by tadhana View Post
We live aboard (going on 8 years) and we do hook up to shore water. So far since Jan 1 we have cruised about 2,000 miles and been in 35 marinas and private docks. We hooked up to city water in 28-29 of those places. We have generally found that our ship board water pressure is higher than shore pressure and generally we find that if we leave the water pump breaker on, our ship's water is consumed as our on board pump supplements the shore water. I do not think shore water is necessarily that much higher pressure than our on board water. Our experience in several dozen cities and towns indicates that it is not. We turn off the water if we are going to leave the boat for a day but otherwise we do not turn it off. I have however intentionally opened up the shore water and flooded the bilge to see what would happen. Our primary bilge pump can stay ahead of the city water and we have a secondary that is even bigger. So if we go to the grocery store or to a friend's boat for dinner we generally do not turn off the dock water, unless we are leaving for the weekend. As far as the BoatUS article, Back in the 1990s I worked with the Boat US Technical exchange to research the Boat US claims and see what was sinking boats. Dock water did not and does not show up on the radar. So for each of us it is a personal decision, hook up to the city or not. The statistics do not support the worry and there are technical solutions that indicate that this is not a very big risk.

My guess is there is a large geographical difference in dockside water pressure. In general, marinas have high water pressure in this region. I suppose it is because they are often at the bottom of a steep hill. Even many dirt Homs have problems around here with too high muni water pressure.
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Old 08-13-2016, 09:18 PM   #27
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Risk manage...if you want....

High water pressure - regulate
Fear of broken onboard lines - turn off when not onboard, limiting timer on dock, higher bilge pump rating....does't have to beat it, just stay close to it. Use quality hose and fittings. PM your system.

C'Mon folks...this is plumbing...doesn't get much simpler. You know the pitfalls, fix them or use your tanks only. Another thread of much about nothing.

Hopefully the most important thing for newer boaters to understand....is yes, the city will gladly pump your boat full of water if you allow them to.

Like Nancy Reagan said... " just say no".....
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Old 08-13-2016, 09:22 PM   #28
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Live a board for 19 year's and we have never connected to domestic water as over the years we have seen several boats sink, and or sever water damage. We always fill the tanks and use the boats water pump. Worse that can happen is 200 gallons in the bilge. Wr also use a 30 psi pump as it saves on water with plenty of water for daily needs.
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Old 08-13-2016, 09:53 PM   #29
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The 90psi municipal water where i live would easily overpower every 12VDC bilge pumping system I have seen.
You need to get out more.
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Old 08-13-2016, 10:14 PM   #30
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The 90psi municipal water where i live would easily overpower every 12VDC bilge pumping system I have seen.

We have municipalities around here with high water pressure too. Wonderful invention those things called pressure regulators. Cheap and widely used.

If a garden hose will overpower your bilge pumps I pity the day you actually need yours. It's the first thing I made sure my pump could handle was a wide open hose in the bilge. Woulda never left the dock if it couldn't but that's just my standard.
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Old 08-13-2016, 11:08 PM   #31
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We have municipalities around here with high water pressure too. Wonderful invention those things called pressure regulators. Cheap and widely used.

If a garden hose will overpower your bilge pumps I pity the day you actually need yours. It's the first thing I made sure my pump could handle was a wide open hose in the bilge. Woulda never left the dock if it couldn't but that's just my standard.
As well as the fact that most water lines have valves on them which you can just turn down to lower the flow rate.
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Old 08-14-2016, 01:50 AM   #32
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City water pressure can vary. You might think you have it sorted, but get a pressure spike, suddenly your system gets overwhelmed.
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:49 AM   #33
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We fill the tanks , bur there is a simple soluton for folks that want "city water".

A QUALITY pressure reducing unit .

This is NOT marine and nor RV. A $100 investment, rebuildable.

Purchase it at the plumbing supply house and install it outside near the dock supply.

Your potable water hose to the boat will thank you as will the internal fittings.

As most pressure regulators can supply a great flow (rather than the pressure rise and fall of the usual 12v pump) a fairly low setting will usually do just fine.

But its still a risk,to depart with the water on.

As most bilges do not suffer from being washed , simply allowing the FW inlet to run free and observing weather the boats bilge pump system is adequate might be an interesting experiment.
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Old 08-14-2016, 09:36 AM   #34
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I've connected to city water, but only turned the spigot open 1/4 turn and shut it off when leaving. After seeing line damage from someone else on this forum with city water pressure, that caused me to rethink my use of it. Most of the time just use my own tanks.
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Old 08-14-2016, 09:44 AM   #35
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Some good points brought up here; a good exercise is to cleanse your bilge with fresh water every now and then, good way to test pump system while you are at it.

As for insurance claims, I was told that by adjusters for both Zurich and ACE.
Either instance, a poorly maintained and/or designed boat as a result of owner neglect ( by intent or ignorance) is the root cause.

Me, I tried to remember to turn the water off when away for awhile merely because it served no purpose being on. But I never worried for a second if I forgot, no more than at a house.
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:23 AM   #36
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The yard watering systems use 12V parts.

Should be pretty easy to wire a shut off valve to a switch to turn the water off as you go ashore.
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Old 08-14-2016, 01:03 PM   #37
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]I've connected to city water, but only turned the spigot open 1/4 turn and shut it off when leaving.

Partially closing the valve would reduce the flow rate if a line failed, but it does not reduce the line pressure.
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Old 08-15-2016, 06:43 AM   #38
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"Partially closing the valve would reduce the flow rate if a line failed, but it does not reduce the line pressure."

You bet there is no loss of pressure to the standing system.

At box stores they do sell for washing machines a gadget that closes with too much flow.

Should the hose to a washing machine let go the high volume of water closes the valve .

Might be installed at the dock source as a safety ?

A couple of bucks worth of plastic , whats to loose?
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Old 08-15-2016, 07:05 AM   #39
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Not sure if that wahing machine valve would know the difference of normal several faucet use or line break. Would be great if it did...simple and easier than the gallon meter approach.

Can always wire your bilge pumps to also cut off an electrical solenoid in the water system. Thought about doing that for my air conditioning pump too.
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Old 08-15-2016, 08:33 AM   #40
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]I've connected to city water, but only turned the spigot open 1/4 turn and shut it off when leaving.

Partially closing the valve would reduce the flow rate if a line failed, but it does not reduce the line pressure.
Yes but it's flow that would sink a boat, not pressure.
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