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Old 08-23-2020, 09:02 PM   #21
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We have both a salt water and a fresh water supply to our heads. Also for the wash down pump. We only use the salt water supply if we haven’t had time or there’s some other reason we been unable to make RO water.
If you flush your holding tank (and when you flush your head) try to use only fresh water. That cuts down odor to a major degree also is better for the head components.
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Old 08-23-2020, 09:04 PM   #22
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Take a good look at the pump location. Some are tied to the tank at the tank bottom. They could back flow.

Below waterline tank discharge thru-hulls should always be kept closed except when actually dumping the tank. But even if left open, unless the duckbills in a SeaLand diaphragm pump aren't so old and worn that the slits have become holes, at worst sea water will only seep very slowly through it. Sea water will also have a hard time doing more than seeping through a macerator.


However, that isn't a reason to eliminate the vented loop between the discharge pump and the thru-hull.



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Old 08-23-2020, 09:11 PM   #23
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Peggy you’re the best. Thanks for the work you’ve done on this issue.
Can you say why you give this advice? We’ve been liveaboards commuting between the Caribbean and New England. Of course we close our thru hulls when coastal in the US. But have left them open on passage and in the Caribbean. Seem to get less clogs in the segment from holding tank to thru hull that way. We have two holding tanks. Ones below the water line and macerator pump dependent. The other is gravity fed.
Also any comments about using pvc pipe
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Old 08-23-2020, 09:30 PM   #24
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Peggy, - thanks for your advice and I did buy you book several years ago. I highly recommend it for everyone.

Jim
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Old 08-23-2020, 09:39 PM   #25
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The gravity drain tank is entirely above the waterline, so no problem leaving that thru-hull open all the time...in fact that's the better way to do it because it allows you to flush directly overboard via that tank. Keeping the thru-hull closed can allow the tank discharge line to become packed with sludge.

However, safety standards call for keeping all below-waterline thru-hulls closed except when in use, which can be a bit impractical. A vented loop between the macerator pump and thru-hull is called for, but mounting the discharge pump above the top of the tank can make the loop unnecessary.

As for pvc pipe, as long as it's a straight piece, "soft coupled" with about a foot of hose at each connection to anything rigid, and any long sections supported, there's no reason not to use it.

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Old 08-23-2020, 09:42 PM   #26
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Peggy, - thanks for your advice and I did buy you book several years ago. I highly recommend it for everyone. Jim

Thanks for the kind words!


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Old 08-23-2020, 09:57 PM   #27
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Pumping your tank out probably does not go through anti siphon loop.

Holding tank discharge line does not through a vented loop to get to the deck pumpout fitting. It MAY go to a y-valve--one side off it going to the deck pumpout fitting, the other side going to the discharge pump (macerator or electric diaphragm) and then over a vented loop to the thru-hull.

I strongly recommend that you spend a little time tracing the plumbing lines on your boat to learn where they go and the components that may or may not be in them. This will make trouble-shooting problems a LOT easier!

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Old 08-24-2020, 01:41 AM   #28
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Jim, we do it regularly and our through hull is just below the waterline.

Go have a look at your set up. You should have a macerator pump that pumps the sewage overboard via a hose that is in a n (inverted U bend) shape taking the sewage up above the waterline and then down to the through hull.

If your pump fails the n bend will prevent any water intrusion.

Additionally you have a ball valve at the through hull that you can close.

BTW, while within the three mile zone that valve must be closed and secured by a lock or by taking the handle off. It will be checked during a CG inspection.

My interpretation of the coast guard regulations does not require holding tank valves to be locked with in the 3 mile limit. Y valves yes and type 1 or type 2 pass through treatment tanks need to be secured if in a no discharge zone. Type 3 holding tanks are not pass through devices nor y valves so they are not subject to the same requirement

https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Our-Organiz...gineering/msd/
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Old 08-24-2020, 07:58 AM   #29
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Your interpretation is incorrect...you've wandered into the weeds that apply to equipment mfrs (not uncommon...a least you didn't stumble onto Title 46!)

33 CFR 159.7(c) "Requirements for vessel operators" 33 CFR 159.7 is applicable part of the regulation and seacocks are "valves."

(c) When operating a vessel on a body of water where the discharge of untreated sewage is prohibited by the Environmental Protection Agency under 40 CFR 140.3, the operator must secure each Type III device in a manner which prevents discharge of sewage. Acceptable methods of securing the device include -
(1) Closing each valve leading to an overboard discharge and removing the handle;
(2) Padlocking each valve leading to an overboard discharge in the closed position; or
(3) Using a non-releasable wire-tie to hold each valve leading to an overboard discharge in the closed position.

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Old 08-24-2020, 08:03 AM   #30
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Personally, I meet that rule by doing 2 things: bright orange ziptie holding the seacock closed and the macerator breaker is kept off so that 2 switches would be needed to power the macerator.
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Old 08-24-2020, 09:25 AM   #31
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My interpretation of the coast guard regulations does not require holding tank valves to be locked with in the 3 mile limit. Y valves yes and type 1 or type 2 pass through treatment tanks need to be secured if in a no discharge zone. Type 3 holding tanks are not pass through devices nor y valves so they are not subject to the same requirement

https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Our-Organiz...gineering/msd/
No sir, gotta have it closed and secured in a way that removes the chance of accidental discharge.

Here's one potentially expensive issue it can cause. If your vent gets blocked and pressure builds in the holding tank it will find a way out. That way out is through the macerator, up into the vented loop and out the through hull.

Leaving a nice trail in the water or in the marina could end up in heavy fines.
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Old 08-24-2020, 10:12 AM   #32
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Thanks for the clarification
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Old 08-28-2020, 01:23 PM   #33
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Question on this comment:

"BTW, while within the three mile zone that valve must be closed and secured by a lock or by taking the handle off. It will be checked during a CG inspection."

I have heard you need a double lock/activation system. Mine takes the insertion of a physical key AND flipping the breaker to turn on the overboard pump out.... so my valve is either open or at least closed but not locked....

Anyone know if this is ok? Never had Coast Guard Aux in 20 yearly inspections say a word...
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Old 08-28-2020, 01:38 PM   #34
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Never had Coast Guard Aux in 20 yearly inspections say a word...
Now there's a statement that could open a full can of worms!
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Old 08-28-2020, 01:42 PM   #35
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Only reason I brought up Coast Guard Aux is because I have never been boarded by the reg Coast Guard.... but I do get my Aux inspection and sticker each year (except this one for obvious reasons). Maybe the sticker keeps the reg Coast Guard away from me
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Old 08-28-2020, 03:05 PM   #36
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Question on this comment:

"BTW, while within the three mile zone that valve must be closed and secured by a lock or by taking the handle off. It will be checked during a CG inspection."

I have heard you need a double lock/activation system. Mine takes the insertion of a physical key AND flipping the breaker to turn on the overboard pump out.... so my valve is either open or at least closed but not locked....

Anyone know if this is ok? Never had Coast Guard Aux in 20 yearly inspections say a word...

Apparently you didn't read my post #29 that quotes the reg verbatim and lists all the acceptable means of "securing" a holding tank discharge...at least all the means that existed when that reg was written. The ability to lock a macerator pump with a key or switch only accessible by the captain didn't exist then, but is became 4th acceptable means.



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Old 08-28-2020, 03:50 PM   #37
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Peggie... spell or grammar check is confusing me..... your final statement reads "The ability to lock a macerator pump with a key or switch only accessible by the captain didn't exist then, but is became 4th acceptable means." So is the key with the captain having it in his/her possession now an acceptable means to secure the discharge while leaving the valve open?
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Old 08-28-2020, 04:50 PM   #38
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My GB 42 came to me in 1986 with no provision whatsoever for holding sewage. Every ounce was pumped out. The final incarnation for the system I devised was a 35-gallon plastic tank with a 2-inch through-hull and seacock below it. Its lower 1/3 was below the at-rest waterline, and there was no macerator pump. To empty it while underway only required opening of the valve. Alternately slowing and speeding up to cruise would rinse it - closed the valve when back up at cruise with the tank empty. It could also be pumped from a deck pump-out fitting.

The smaller MS Pilot has a small tank connected to a macerator and thence to a through-hull, all under the cockpit deck which itself is just inches above the waterline - no option for any sort of a loop. The tank would definitely flood if left open with boat at rest. Not really sure what would happen if left open while underway - not planning to find out. Dumping at sea would simply involve opening valve, operating pump, and closing valve after securing the pump.
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Old 08-29-2020, 05:52 AM   #39
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Yup. Could happen but what are the chances? Probably less than being struck by lightning. Go boating.
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No sir, gotta have it closed and secured in a way that removes the chance of accidental discharge.

Here's one potentially expensive issue it can cause. If your vent gets blocked and pressure builds in the holding tank it will find a way out. That way out is through the macerator, up into the vented loop and out the through hull.

Leaving a nice trail in the water or in the marina could end up in heavy fines.
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Old 08-29-2020, 07:46 AM   #40
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Yup. Could happen but what are the chances? Probably less than being struck by lightning. Go boating.
A blocked vent line raising pressure in the tank? It happens pretty frequently. I can even put my hand up on that one.
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