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Old 10-10-2010, 02:49 PM   #1
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why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

i have a 38' marine trader, the galley sink drains overboard and the fore and aft sinks drain into a sump that gets pumped overboard when it reaches the float switch level.* The shower/tub drains into the*bilge with zero acess to plumb into the sump why?
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Old 10-10-2010, 06:18 PM   #2
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why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

Our MT 34 was the same way and we installed drains and sumps for the shower and it works quite well, http://tinyurl.com/2483jne . Chuck

-- Edited by Capn Chuck on Sunday 10th of October 2010 06:18:52 PM
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Old 10-10-2010, 08:40 PM   #3
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

thank you so much for the info!*did you have to cut up the floor to gain acess for the sump install?
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Old 10-10-2010, 09:03 PM   #4
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why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

Quote:
brettonjohn wrote:The shower/tub drains into the*bilge with zero acess to plumb into the sump why?
I have heard of a number of other boats with this same setup.* I have never had a builder tell me the reason they did it this way, but I wonder if it has to do with what goes down the drain.* A galley sink can have food bits and things like old milk going down the drain, and a head sink could have the same sort of thing on occasion plus toothpaste, mouthwash, and so on.* Probably not the best things to have end up in the bilge and sit there.

In theory--- assuming you or a guest doesn't pee in it--- the only thing going down a shower drain is water, dirt, and soap/shampoo.* Perhaps the theory is that this stuff doesn't have the potential to turn nasty down in the bilge.

If you decide to add a sump for the shower and plumb it to a pump connected to a through-hull--- or connect the drain directly to the pump--- the use of a diaphragm pump is probably the best.* For example I believe most Grand Banks boats--- at least the newer ones--- use a Whale Gulper for this.* Diaphragm pumps tend not to get clogged by hair and dirt.

Our boat uses an interesting pump for the shower--- it's similar to the pumps used to move blood in a dialysis machine.* An arm with a roller at each end runs around in a circular chamber with the rollers pressing flat a flexible tube that fits around the inside wall of the chamber..* The movement of the rollers compressing the tube forces the liquid through the tube and out to the through-hull.* The advantage is that the contents of the fluid being pumped through the tube never come in contact with, so can't clog, the pump mechanism.


-- Edited by Marin on Sunday 10th of October 2010 09:04:18 PM
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Old 10-10-2010, 10:19 PM   #5
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

I intentionally removed by nearly horizontal feeding shower sump and run mine into the bilge. My thinking is this and I have tested my theory for six years:
-If the shower runs into the bilge then the bilge gets flushed on a regular basis.
-You want your bilge pump to get some regular use
-You want to know when your bilge pump isn't working from showers rather then when it's needed when sinking.
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Old 10-11-2010, 04:44 AM   #6
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

Saves money for the builder.
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Old 10-11-2010, 07:01 AM   #7
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

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brettonjohn wrote:

thank you so much for the info!*did you have to cut up the floor to gain acess for the sump install?
No, there is a small hatch in the floor at the bottom of the steps down to the forward cabin and the sump is mounted right under that. I did have to fabricate a shelf for it to sit on. Chuck

*
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Old 10-11-2010, 07:03 AM   #8
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

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Daddyo wrote:

I intentionally removed by nearly horizontal feeding shower sump and run mine into the bilge. My thinking is this and I have tested my theory for six years:
-If the shower runs into the bilge then the bilge gets flushed on a regular basis.
-You want your bilge pump to get some regular use
-You want to know when your bilge pump isn't working from showers rather then when it's needed when sinking.
In every boat we have been in that the shower drained into the bilge, the smell is terrible. In addition you can pretty much guarantee the bilge pump is going to get fouled with hair and everything else that gets down the drain. IMO, this is not a good idea. Chuck

*
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Old 10-11-2010, 08:20 AM   #9
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

"In theory--- assuming you or a guest doesn't pee in it--- the only thing going down a shower drain is water, dirt, and soap/shampoo. Perhaps the theory is that this stuff doesn't have the potential to turn nasty down in the bilge."

If so, it's theory based on a false premise..'cuz shower water is loaded with bacteria from body and hair oils and perspiration, soap scum and other things that help to turn bilge water into a primordial soup that makes a whole boat smell like a swamp or even a sewer. So by all means, install a sump!

And to keep that sump--and your head and sink drains too--sweet smelling and clean and the pumps free of hair and other clogs, you need to maintain it. The best sump and drain cleaner on the planet IMO is Raritan "C.P." It's a bio-enzymatic cleaning product that Raritan only markets as a toilet bowl cleaner. C.P not only destroys odor on contact, but the enzymes in it "eat" hair, soap scum, body oils, toothpaste, cooking grease etc...making it ideal for maintaining sumps and sink drains. A couple of ounces down the shower drain into a sump and/or a sink drain once a week when it can stand at least overnight (it can remain for a month or longer...there's nothing in it that can harm the system) is all that's needed to keep drains and sumps clean odor free.
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Old 10-11-2010, 08:22 AM   #10
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

Quote:
Daddyo wrote:-If the shower runs into the bilge then the bilge gets flushed on a regular basis.
I guess if you like living a couple of feet above an open sewer that approach might not be too offensive. The health risk is more than most folks care to intentionally expose themselves though. The figures below are for "fresh" drain water, it gets*a lot worse*after a day or so.

"enteric pathogens in graywater from various household sources"

"Standard plate count bacteria (SPC) ranged from 10<sup>5</sup> to 10<sup>10</sup> colony forming units (cfu) per 100 ml for shower and bath water, and an average of 10<sup>4</sup> to 10<sup>6</sup> cfu per 100 ml for total coliforms."

Joan B. Rose<sup>1</sup>, Gwo-Shing Sun<sup>2</sup>, Charles P. Gerba<sup></sup><sup>2</sup> and Norval A. Sinclair<sup>2</sup>
<sup>1</sup>Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, College of Public Health, University of South Forida, Tampa, FL 33612, U.S.A.<sup>2</sup>Departments of Microbiology and Immunology, and Nutrition and Food Science, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721, U.S.A.
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Old 10-11-2010, 09:22 AM   #11
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

Rather than an extra thru hull, some folks will dump into the head sink.

Most tiny pumps will "Run Dry" just fine , for limited times, so an off on switch , and just letting it run during the shower is fine.

Mount the pump in bag made of of brass house window screen, makes cleaning the hair off easier.
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:50 AM   #12
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

My boat also was rigged to dump into the bilge. I changed that as one of the first projects.
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Old 10-11-2010, 09:06 PM   #13
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why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

I don't know what you guys are talking about. My bilge gets pumped out several times with every shower. The last pump out and final run is always the final clean rinse. There is no smell or scum. When we are under way I use the standard bilge cleaners and all is always well. Without my method the AC/Heat condensation water, packing gland drip, etc.. would be sitting in the bilge for months by flushed out with clean water instead there is never long term standing scuzz water. Yes every year or so I need to clean out the filter of hair. The other thing I like to do when underway is run the shower with the 190 degree engine heated water to really clean the bilge.


-- Edited by Daddyo on Monday 11th of October 2010 09:08:02 PM
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:46 PM   #14
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

One issue to consider with the typical bilge pump is that it never gets the last inch or whatever of water out. So there is always--- at least in most boats I think--- a small amount of bilge water present and as Peggy points out it doesn't take much to start to smell. The only way we've ever gotten our bilge completely dry is by using a shop vac to pull the last bit of water out.
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:48 PM   #15
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

Quote:
HeadMistress wrote:A couple of ounces down the shower drain into a sump and/or a sink drain once a week when it can stand at least overnight (it can remain for a month or longer...there's nothing in it that can harm the system)....
So Raritan CP won't harm rubber/neoprene/etc components in plumbing or the insides of pumps?* Not doubting you, just asking.

*
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:29 AM   #16
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

No. I've used CP and KO for years with great results. They are designed for the workings of manual toilets like mine, pumps, tanks, hoses, etc. Highly recommended.
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:19 AM   #17
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

thank you all for all the fine info! I ended up putting in a little pump on a man. switch inside the head and labled it shower pump, from there i plumbed it into the sump that the fore and aft sinks drain into. not a perfect solution but had no acess under the tub/shower drain. now instead of gallons reaching the bilge and going foward to get pumped out when the main bilge float level was reached i was able to isolate the gray water to an area aft in the bilge and get rid of it that way. once again thank you for all your help and found your anwsers and discussion*very helpful........brett
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:19 AM   #18
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

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So Raritan CP won't harm rubber/neoprene/etc components in plumbing or the insides of pumps?* Not doubting you, just asking.
Nope...it's non-chemical bio-enzymatic cleaner that won't harm a thing.

And btw, it's also an outstanding toilet bowl cleaner...safe for use in a Lectra/San, Electro Scan or PuraSan and can also be safely combined with white vinegar.
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:38 PM   #19
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RE: why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

In our boat, it seems pretty logical. The galley and head sinks can overboard above the waterline. The base of the shower is below the waterline. It goes into its own sump in the bilge and is pumped up and out by its own pump. Judging by the frequency I have to unstick the check valve, the stuff coming out of the shower is sticky enough to give the main bilge pump fits if the bilge pump sat in it for a while.
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Old 10-13-2010, 08:20 AM   #20
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why is the shower the only drain that ends up in the bilge?

a good example of why the shower needs to not get dumped into the bilge and pumped from there can be found at home. Go to the shower you use most, take off the drain cover and with a flashlight take a look at the stuff down there, do you really want that sloshing around in the bilge?? yuck!
HOLLYWOOD

-- Edited by hollywood8118 on Wednesday 13th of October 2010 08:20:52 AM
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