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Old 01-10-2020, 02:43 PM   #41
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I have a friend who was pumping out his new to him boat that geyserd on him. All over him. So be very careful about venting. I repurposed my direct overboard fitting to be a second vent after eliminating the Y valve. My next change will be to move the original vent closer to the tank with less opportunity for fluid holding dips in the hose.
Peggy, is there any reason not to use a regular mushroom shaped thruhull for the 5/8 vent line? I’m looking at having to replace the current vent because the screen is clogged with salt again. The potable water tank vent is clogged too, btw. I’m thinking I’d install a stainless steel mushroom type for the holding tank and one of those flush mount vents for the water. Even if I have to install a clamshell over the water vent it beats trying to keep the screens clear.
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Old 01-10-2020, 03:51 PM   #42
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Brockets,
I have a 1990 45' Californian. The two vents on the port side midship are for the waste tank and fuel tank. I think the forward one is for the waste holding tank. I had a vent filter that was plugged due the Vacuflush toilet being flushed when the tank was full. I removed the filter and found the 5/8” vent hose to the tank plugged with the carbon contents from the filter. I routed out the hose and very CAREFULLY AND SLOWLY back flushed with the pump out port open. Only air came out. I then went to the pump out station, connected the pump out hose and could hear air being drawn into the vent. With the pump out running I wrapped a rag around a fresh water hose and held it to the vent. Thus completely flushing out the vent line. Based on Peggy’s advice I didn’t replace the the filter. Everything is ok now. But I think Peggy’s solution of having two large vent lines, one on each side of the boat to get cross flow of air is the ultimate solution.
Good Luck
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Old 01-10-2020, 05:46 PM   #43
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Peggy, is there any reason not to use a regular mushroom shaped thruhull for the 5/8 vent line?

Nope...in fact, if you'd read my book (see link in my signature below) you'd know there's every reason TO replace the waste tank "vent" thru-hull with an open bulkhead or "mushroom" thru-hull...although in your case you can accomplish just as much by knocking the screen out of the existing thru-hull. As you're discovering, screens create more problems than they solve or prevent. An open thru-hull allows a lot more air exchange with the gasses in the tank, helping to promote the aerobic environment in the tank necessary to prevent odors from being created. It also lets you put a hose nozzle against it to backflush the vent line every time you pump out and/or wash the boat, preventing vent blockages. Better yet, increase the size of the vent line to 1". That would require installing another larger (1") vent fitting in the top, or at the top if necessary, of the tank...but that's an easy job, thanks to a li'l gizmo called the uniseal UNISEAL. In most cases, a larger diameter, shorter straighter vent line and open thru-hull accomplishes more than a second vent line--which, contrary to popular belief, is NOT my "ultimate" solution, it's just one possible solution that may or may not accomplish anything depending on shape of the hull and the locations of the thru-hulls.



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Old 01-11-2020, 08:31 PM   #44
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Some progress today. I got the tank pumped out. I removed the sensor on the top and didn't have any problems with the tank being overfilled. It was about 2 inches from the top. With the sensor out I was able to pump out and flush the tank several times. Tomorrows task is cutting out more floor and getting to the vent line.

Oh, does the boat stink now !

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Old 01-11-2020, 08:39 PM   #45
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I’m surprised you have to cut the floor out to get to it. Ours was a 48’ Tustin built boat. All of the holding tank fittings were easily assessable through a hatch in the forward stateroom. Sorry to hear yours is not that way!
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Old 01-11-2020, 08:52 PM   #46
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The hatch only exposed the sensor and part of the access plate. All the fittings( waste in, waste out and vent) will require cutting out the floor. Same for the starboard tank. Hatches are in the wrong place. They won't be when I'm done :-)

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Old 01-11-2020, 09:01 PM   #47
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At least you are making some progress. Good luck.
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Old 01-12-2020, 10:29 AM   #48
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Unless you had a spill while pumping out, that shouldn't cause the boat to stink, especially since you thoroughly rinsed out the tank. I'm concerned that it means the tank is leaking. Whether it already is or not, it will...all metal tanks do. The smartest thing you can do is replace it with a top quality plastic tank while you have access to it to do it. There's an excellent product called PureAyre PureAyre that'll eliminate all the residual odor from a spill or leak *when used as directed* (it's not a cleaning product...the area must be cleaned before using it).


I'd also check all the hoses for permeation...it's a simple test: wet clean rags in HOT water--as hot as you can handle. Wrap one around every section of hose (use a "new" clean rag for each one...don't re-use any). When the rags have cooled remove each and smell it. If you can smell anything on the rag, that hose has permeated. If you find that even one section has, you'd be wise to replace 'em all. As I've posted earlier, I'd have the entire system removed and re-installed by someone who knows what they're doing this time.



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Old 01-12-2020, 10:38 AM   #49
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Unless you had a spill while pumping out, that shouldn't cause the boat to stink, especially since you thoroughly rinsed out the tank. I'm concerned that it means the tank is leaking. Whether it already is or not, it will...all metal tanks do. The smartest thing you can do is replace it with a top quality plastic tank while you have access to it to do it. There's an excellent product called PureAyre PureAyre that'll eliminate all the residual odor from a spill or leak *when used as directed* (it's not a cleaning product...the area must be cleaned before using it).


I'd also check all the hoses for permeation...it's a simple test: wet clean rags in HOT water--as hot as you can handle. Wrap one around every section of hose (use a "new" clean rag for each one...don't re-use any). When the rags have cooled remove each and smell it. If you can smell anything on the rag, that hose has permeated. If you find that even one section has, you'd be wise to replace 'em all. As I've posted earlier, I'd have the entire system removed and re-installed by someone who knows what they're doing this time.



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Old 01-12-2020, 08:16 PM   #50
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Success on the vent clean out. Cut out the floor and found the vent inlet. Removed the vent line and had to use a drill with a 3/8 bit to drill out the vent inlet. It was solid for for the full 2 1/2 inches of its length.

Found some really confusing stuff and just for the record.

Vent lines in the first picture are for the main fuel tank and side tank. The vent line for the holding tank is next to the diesel fuel fill. So......

Vent lines next to the pump out lines are for fuel tanks vents.....
Vent line next to the fuel fill is for the the holding tank vents....

Now on to the vacuflush air leaks

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Old 01-14-2020, 09:19 AM   #51
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vents

Had difficulty establishing vents on my 48 Californian MY. Stb, has one holding tank vent and one water vent aft. Port aft has one fuel and one holding tank vent also aft. Nice to know which is which. Put water from hose directly into holding tank outside of boat, and you can hear which vent is active. I have two tanks, one vent port, one stb. Right beside the water vent STB and fuel port side.
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Old 01-19-2020, 05:50 PM   #52
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For the first two years I owned my boat the heads would burp back after a flush. I found the vent plugged and the tank was half full of solids and could not be pumped out completely. I have three heads and only one 85 gal holding tank. Now when I do a pump out I can hear a loud suction sound as the tank empties. My first question is how was non of this not discovered in the survey. My 1986 Californian has a fiberglass built in place tank with full access to both ends. Joe, I feel for you and all you have been through.
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Old 02-02-2020, 08:33 PM   #53
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After much work, I've been able to push water from outside the boat, thru the vent line into the holding tank. In this process I've found "SaniGard" vent filters buried in the bilges of the boat. They were not part of clogged vent. They probably have not been changed in years. The real question is are they worth the trouble and should I replace them? Also I want to be able to push water thru the vent line every time I pump out. Will this damage this filter?

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Old 02-02-2020, 08:42 PM   #54
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You will not be able to back flush with filters online and they will cause to tanks to smell. Remove them and keep the vents clear. If you get smell there are fixes you can do.
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Old 02-02-2020, 08:43 PM   #55
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+1 Ditch the filters!
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Old 02-02-2020, 08:53 PM   #56
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Greetings,
Agree. NO filter or restrictions.


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Old 02-02-2020, 08:56 PM   #57
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Absolutely no filters.
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Old 02-03-2020, 07:01 AM   #58
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After much work, I've been able to push water from outside the boat, thru the vent line into the holding tank. In this process I've found "SaniGard" vent filters buried in the bilges of the boat. They were not part of clogged vent. They probably have not been changed in years. The real question is are they worth the trouble and should I replace them? Also I want to be able to push water thru the vent line every time I pump out. Will this damage this filter?

Contrarian opinion: We've not had issues with sanitation odors in the boat. We've not ever had any issues with vent filters. Mostly useful to keep from blasting marina neighbors off the dock when flushing. Change every 3-4 years or so, IIRC.

Can't backflush through the vent hose, though, with a filter in place.

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Old 02-03-2020, 10:56 PM   #59
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Never used a filter and never thought I needed one.

The biggest improvement I've found is by introducing O2 into the tank by mechanical or chemical means. I started with NoFlex and the light bulb went on. Later, I found an alternative that works just as well called sodium percarbonate.

You can buy a 5 lb bag on Amazon for $17. It's a real bargain compared to the name brand. I heard about it from a fellow TFer who posted it a while back. I've been using it for many months and have found similar results.

https://smile.amazon.com/Sodium-Perc...s%2C215&sr=8-1
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