I don't think you're doing it the "wrong way" drynoc, just that it may not be the easiest way. (Most) racing boats do not have a lot of superfluous things like hot water and showers, etc. hence the owner doesn't have to spend a lot of time maintaining them. But you may be surprised to find out that most of the owners who have these systems don't have to spend a lot of time maintaining them either.
You read a lot about various problems that people are having with them on sites such as this, but keep in mind that the problems tend to occur every ten or fifteen years, much as they do in a house or condo. If the equipment was that unreliable, it would not continue to sell.
You also get a very "do-it-yourself" type of person in these forums. I would venture to say that a good 75% of the sailing population hires service people to deal with the issues.
I'm a little worried about your comment regarding the running backstays...you still have a central backstay on your mast don't you ?