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Old 03-27-2019, 11:37 AM   #1
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Sumpless Shower Drain system

As we refit the '79 40' Tollycraft we recently purchased I went hunting for the shower sumps. To my surprise there were no 'sumps'. Rather there were Par pumps dedicated to pumping out the shower. I've not seen this before. At first I thought about retrofitting a sump since I'm not sure the old PAR is working. The surveyor did test the shower and the water disappeared...but where?

In any case the more I think about it, it seems to be have real advantages to avoid the smelly sump if possible. Do others have experience with this type of system?
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Old 03-27-2019, 11:51 AM   #2
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No sump in my boat...just a drain to a (newly-installed) strainer to a pump to overboard. The pump is switched on/off with a button in the shower stall.

No smelly sump, no shower water in the bilge.
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Old 03-27-2019, 12:27 PM   #3
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I had a boat that was setup the same as described by flywright. It requires a self-priming, continuous duty pump that can be run dry. Rather than a float switch there is a manual switch near the shower.

Honestly, I like this design better than a sump. You don't need to clear clogs or clean like you do with the sumpbox. Plus, the float switch in the sump box tends to leave us standing in an inch of water while showering. The direct pump style does not.
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Old 03-27-2019, 12:33 PM   #4
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The downside of not having a sump is if you have A/C you donít have a place to drain the condensate. Other than that no problem with the direct pump system.
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Old 03-27-2019, 12:46 PM   #5
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My first two boats did not have sumps and my friends 48' Pacemaker does not have sumps. They just pump straight overboard.
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Old 03-27-2019, 12:49 PM   #6
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+1 on the direct pump system.

Pump is a Jabsco Par Max 3 #31600-0092. Self priming and can run dry. Controlled by rocker switch next to shower.

I have the standard sump system for the HVAC condensate. Not so bad to maintain as condensate is a different animal than shower water.
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Old 03-27-2019, 01:26 PM   #7
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I have 2 Whale Gulper 220 pumps that do not require strainers, can run dry and eject directly overboard. In 3-years of live aboard use they have never clogged or failed. It pumps hair with ease. I wired one to a float switch and the other to an on/off switch. Both work flawlessly. Highly recommend.
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Old 03-28-2019, 06:27 AM   #8
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With guests aboard a timer , and an ON light outside the shower might be worthwhile.

Run dry is fine , bit seldom for hours or days.
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Old 03-28-2019, 07:01 AM   #9
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Yes on the red light on the switch.
Use of the pump is somewhat self enforcing. Sometimes I forget to turn it on. The shower filling up with water is telltale.
The pump is not too noisy but it does make an gurgling, slurping sound out of the drain that is hard to ignore.
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Old 03-28-2019, 07:05 AM   #10
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Timer is a good idea. I feel like a flow switch with a delayed end would be perfect for this, just not sure anything like that exists... My family would absolutely forget any manual switch, those don't work.
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Old 03-28-2019, 07:05 AM   #11
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I have a Whale pump connected to a sump with a float switch. In addition to the shower, 2 sinks, and 1 air conditioner, I added a drain line from my anchor locker. The original pump lasted about 14 years and then the diaphragm failed. I installed my spare pump and bought the wet side of the pump (housing, valves, hose barbs, and diaphragm) for $20. Can't say enough good things about those Whale pumps. I've also replaced the float switch once.

For me, an automatic shower sump is an absolute must. A dry anchor locker that doesn't drain into the bilge is wonderful also.

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Old 03-28-2019, 08:56 AM   #12
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When you need a shower sump (or when you don't)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slowmo View Post
As we refit the '79 40' Tollycraft we recently purchased I went hunting for the shower sumps. To my surprise there were no 'sumps'. Rather there were Par pumps dedicated to pumping out the shower. I've not seen this before. At first I thought about retrofitting a sump since I'm not sure the old PAR is working. The surveyor did test the shower and the water disappeared...but where?

In any case the more I think about it, it seems to be have real advantages to avoid the smelly sump if possible. Do others have experience with this type of system?

You will see a 'sumpless' shower drain setup like yours in any boat where the shower drain is so close to the bottom of the hull that there isn't enough room for a gravity-drain into a sump box. Our Bayliner 4788 has two showers, one with a sump, one sumpless.


The floor of the aft shower is almost right at the bottom of the hull, so it is sumpless, because it has to be. The floor of the forward shower is about 14" off the hull bottom, so there is plenty of room for gravity to move the water into a sump box.


Does your Tollycraft have air conditioning? If yes, you should check to see where the condensate is draining. A/C condensate should be going overboard, never into the bilge. This means that it should be draining into a sump-box or routed to an overboard drain.


ABYC did not introduce the A/C condensate draining requirements until 2003, but some boat manufacturers implemented it before then. That said, I have seen many boats (including our 4788) where condensate was going into the bilge. Very bad, on many levels...
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Old 03-28-2019, 09:57 AM   #13
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Here's your huckleberry. automatic and directly overboard.

http://www.whalepumps.com/Marine/pro...lyID=Gulley-IC
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Old 03-28-2019, 11:06 AM   #14
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When we bought our Nova 18 years ago, I discovered that the shower sump pump was located under the house batteries, so I pulled it out, junked it, and piped the shower water directly into the engine room sump. Since the boat has conventional shaft packing, the water in the sump does not sit there for long, before being pumped over the side by the bilge pump.
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Old 03-29-2019, 07:35 AM   #15
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" Since the boat has conventional shaft packing, the water in the sump does not sit there for long, before being pumped over the side by the bilge pump."

This is certainly a most unique reason for not installing Duramax or GFO packing!!!
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Old 04-15-2019, 09:15 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pau Hana View Post
Here's your huckleberry. automatic and directly overboard.

http://www.whalepumps.com/Marine/pro...lyID=Gulley-IC


I recently removed a shower box and installed one of these and love it. I bought the shower sump version which has an included shower drain replacement and sensor. Works perfectly.
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