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Old 07-14-2016, 10:13 PM   #1
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Question VacuFlush- One of four has no vacuum...I can tell what is not wrong with it..

First off this is a head that is rarely used, so I was pretty surprised when I hit the flush foot pedal the other day and no vacuum and no pump sounds coming from the engine room (where all four vacuum pumps are).

1. Nothing wrong with pump itself. I know this as I switched wiring from one pump to another one and flushed it's head and the pump worked fine.

2. No clogs in line. Besides the fact that it's not been used in so long I know this as when I switched pump wires I let it run for 50 seconds, and it did build up vacuum in the vacuum tank, and next time flushed just fine. But when I switched the wires back to previous status quo, the pump went back to non working status quo.

3. Pretty sure the problem is not the pressure switch on the vacuum tank as there is continuity at the switch (via multimeter) but when I manually pull back on the spring I loose continuity. This is the opposite of how I thought the system worked but I compared it to a working head and it's vacuum tank switch contacts reacted the same, so i guess the tank switch is ok.

4. Circuit breaker is on and ok....even swapped it with another head's breaker and it worked fine off the non functioning head's circuit breaker.

So, what is left ? A switch on the toilet pedal itself ?

Can a bad duck valve cause this ? (even though the pump created vacuum and flushed just fine when activated from another head)

What say ye ?

Dunno if this means anything but if I keep hitting the flush lever the water in the bowl starts turning a bit yellow....indicating to me that waste water is back flowing into the bowl when there is no vacuum.

The other three heads work perfect, and the holding tank is probably not half full.
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Old 07-14-2016, 11:05 PM   #2
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Is there voltage at the pressure switch?
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Old 07-15-2016, 06:20 AM   #3
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There is no electrical switch on the toilet itself. Only a mechanical valve.

Are you 100% sure you have voltage at the pressure switch on the vacuum tank for that head?
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Old 07-15-2016, 07:35 AM   #4
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There is no electrical switch on the toilet itself. Only a mechanical valve.

Are you 100% sure you have voltage at the pressure switch on the vacuum tank for that head?
i only checked continuity at the tank pressure switch, not voltage......that sounds like a good idea to check for voltage there...although frankly I'm not sure where I'm going to find a ground in that area to get a reading but ill find one somewhere.

if there is no voltage, and the pressure switch wire terminals are not the issue (corrosion) any thoughts on where to check next ? There is good voltage at the circuit breaker.
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Old 07-15-2016, 08:42 AM   #5
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check the silent switch that shuts off the pump for night calls.
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Old 07-15-2016, 09:11 AM   #6
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check the silent switch that shuts off the pump for night calls.
Bayview....I hereby present my face to you to be seriously dope slapped ! YES ! That's all it was ! Who flipped it from where it was, is beyond me.

But I only half heartedly flipped that rocker switch after reading your post as I flipped it to "off" just now.....and yet "off" was really "pump on".... some previous owner mislabeled the damn thing !!! And I don't mean a sticker but an actual engraved plastic plate labeled "off" (I should show a photo !) Gawd, what a stupid problem....all that investigating and all it was was that stupid rocker switch.

=========================

Now this brings up a whole new subject...what in gawd's name is the theory behind those switches in the first place ?? I mean the noise from the flush suction at the head is waaaaay more than the noise from the vacuum pumps...in fact one can't even hear the vacuum pumps running unless one puts their ear against the bulkhead of a stateroom that happens to adjoin the engine room...which in the master stateroom is not even possible.

So what the hell was Viking thinking when they put those "night" switches there in the first place as they don't seem to serve any actual useful purpose.

I mean, seriously, the only person you might "not disturb" by cutting off the pump would be someone sleeping in the engine room !
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Old 07-15-2016, 09:12 AM   #7
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When you switched wires and it ran perfectly, you eliminated toilet as the source of the problem.

If you have full power to the breaker but is none is getting to the toilet, that's a pretty strong indication that the problem has to be in the wiring between the breaker and the toilet or maybe the breaker itself.
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Old 07-15-2016, 09:27 AM   #8
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When you switched wires and it ran perfectly, you eliminated toilet as the source of the problem.

If you have full power to the breaker but is none is getting to the toilet, that's a pretty strong indication that the problem has to be in the wiring between the breaker and the toilet or maybe the breaker itself.
Indeed....someone had flipped the "night" rocker switch....which until I looked harder...didn't even realize this toilet had.....with the icing on the cake being it was in the "on" position and yet "on" was really "off" due to mislabeling I had never noticed before.

So, what is your take on why these pesky switches are there in the first place, on a boat where the flush itself is way more likely to disturb a sleeper than the pump ? All I can figure is the theory is perhaps for enlarged prostate men who might urinate frequently during the night, you cut the pump off and flush before going to bed, and then just keep filling the bowl without flushing during the night...and then turn back on in the morning and flush the nights supply of pee during waking hours ??

Sounds a bit gross to me, but that's all I can figure....
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Old 07-15-2016, 09:34 AM   #9
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The night switch is there because the older vacuum pumps were very noisy.

That and many times the pumps are mounted outside the room that the head is in and make noise that can disturb someone in another room that is not involved in the use of the head at the time.
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Old 07-15-2016, 09:54 AM   #10
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The night switch is there because the older vacuum pumps were very noisy.

That and many times the pumps are mounted outside the room that the head is in and make noise that can disturb someone in another room that is not involved in the use of the head at the time.
Well, that makes sense...except I'm pretty sure these are the original pumps, hidden away under floorboards in the engine room where they are just barely audible in any stateroom (not audible at all in the master)....so for this particular boat I still don't get why the night switches are there...maybe "tradition"....???

===============

Off the subject but while on the subject of these pumps, when I first bought the boat the master toilet pump stopped working. After some investigation I found the gear motor shaft that turns the eccentric that moves the pump up and down had broken in half !!!! Luckily there was a new gear motor in the spares....but how bizarre is that, to have the motor shaft break ? It wasn't rusty either, looked fine otherwise.

As an aside, I didn't get around to figuring this out for a few days and the gear motor had been running 24/7 for two days since it was running but not pumping and therefore the pressure tank was not shutting it off. Didn't really matter since the motor was toast anyway due to broken shaft but might have mattered if we were not at the dock with shore power.
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Old 07-15-2016, 10:38 AM   #11
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We have the night switches on all the bedroom washrooms
great idea.
Get about 4 flushes out of a charge.

Also in the middle of the night when a duck bill may not seat right and the pump cycles You can turn it off and fix it in the morning.

When I have company on the boat over night, I always give them a full run down on how the toilets work including the switch .
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Old 07-15-2016, 10:40 AM   #12
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Dune

Quote:
Bayview....I hereby present my face to you to be seriously dope slapped ! YES ! That's all it was ! Who flipped it from where it was, is beyond me.
LOL Dont ask me how I guessed. []


I sometimes released the vacuum so that if it was only liquid being flushed at night there was no sucking sound and no pump noise. It worked.
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Old 07-15-2016, 10:46 AM   #13
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The PO was probably an accountant where double negatives are popular. Off meant the silent running was off so the pump was on.
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Old 07-15-2016, 12:03 PM   #14
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I sometimes released the vacuum so that if it was only liquid being flushed at night there was no sucking sound and no pump noise. It worked.
By "released the vacuum" do you mean you turned the pump off and then flushed it before going to bed ? I can sort of see that for pee only....but mine is probably only good for perhaps one flush without full vacuum. I guess one could finesse the situation where you flush for a shorter period than normal, leaving enough vacuum for two or three more liquid flushes with no pump.
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Old 07-16-2016, 10:31 AM   #15
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So, what is your take on why these pesky switches are there in the first place, on a boat where the flush itself is way more likely to disturb a sleeper than the pump ? All I can figure is the theory is perhaps for enlarged prostate men who might urinate frequently during the night, you cut the pump off and flush before going to bed, and then just keep filling the bowl without flushing during the night...and then turn back on in the morning and flush the nights supply of pee during waking hours ??

Sounds a bit gross to me, but that's all I can figure....
My wife pointed out a flaw in this logic so obvious that I deserve a second dope slap...and that is, why in this particular scenario go to the trouble of shutting off the pump and not flushing during the night when all one would have to do is not flush !

I suppose it might make a tiny bit of sense in that one might be so sleepy at 4am that one would forget, and flush anyway. So as to avoid a major "D'oh !" one might shut down the pump ahead of time just in case... LOL..
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Old 07-16-2016, 12:42 PM   #16
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So, what is your take on why these pesky switches are there in the first place...?


They allow you to turn off both the water and the power to just one toilet to work on it without having to turn off the water to the whole boat or the main toilet breaker if all the toilets are on it.
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Old 07-16-2016, 01:39 PM   #17
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So, what is your take on why these pesky switches are there in the first place...?


They allow you to turn off both the water and the power to just one toilet to work on it without having to turn off the water to the whole boat or the main toilet breaker if all the toilets are on it.
I wish....mine only turn off the power to the pump. There have been situations in the past where I wished I could turn off the water to one of the toilets but mine have no water line shut off valves...which I find a bit slack on Vikings part. So the only way I can push the flush lever with no water accumulation is to turn off the main water pump circuit breaker....and even then I need to drain any remaining water via opening a sink tap or whatever.....a ridiculous amount of trouble considering one water valve per toilet inlet would solve that issue.
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Old 07-17-2016, 12:45 PM   #18
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I wish....mine only turn off the power to the pump. There have been situations in the past where I wished I could turn off the water to one of the toilets but mine have no water line shut off valves...which I find a bit slack on Vikings part.

Is there a reason why you can't install them yourself? Unless the bowl is so tight against a bulkhead that you can't even see the inlet hose, it's a simple--and inexpensive!--job to cut it and put a pvc valve in it (photo only for illustration of typical valve).
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Old 07-18-2016, 05:45 PM   #19
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I wish....mine only turn off the power to the pump. There have been situations in the past where I wished I could turn off the water to one of the toilets but mine have no water line shut off valves...which I find a bit slack on Vikings part.

Is there a reason why you can't install them yourself ?
other than the low priority aspect compared to other boat projects, no. I was mostly expressing amazement the toilet water lines were not outfitted with shut off valves from the get go, as it would have been so easy if installed when new.
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Old 07-18-2016, 06:12 PM   #20
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We just did an upgrade to 2 toilets to Jabsco Deluxe flush had to put the shut off valves in behind the unit only way to get to it is remove toilet.
luv the units (but liked the assessable shut offs) hope they never leak
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