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post #2 of Old 08-26-2012
Tartan 27' owner
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re: Went to the boat for a sail..and its Flooded!!!

Been there, done that.
Glad you caught it in time.

Almost 10 years ago we had an automatic sensor hooked up to our bilge pump. We also had a questionable stuffing box at the time. The automatic sensor pumped out quite a bit of water so that we were not as concerned about the leak as we should have been. Left the boat alone for too long and found 6" of water above the cabin sole. Water got into the engine oil, the batteries were shot and lots of water had to be bailed by hand at the mooring.
Shortly thereafter I ripped out the automatic sensor and we tightened the stuffing box. I have since been quite happy not having an automatic bilge pump that only hid problems from me and drained my batteries.
If you can get to your boat once or twice a week you should be fine without an automatic bilge pump. I feel it is better to know when water is getting into my boat then not knowing how much water the bilge pump has pumped out in my absence.
This is kind of a philosophical question, as in, is it half full or half empty (or do you prefer brunettes to blonds).
As a compromise I'd keep your Maxi bilge pump on automatic in case of the catastrophic leak but keep your Mini bilge pump on manual operation only. At least this way you will know when there is water getting inside your cabin. If your bilge pumps are all on automatic it is always 'out of sight, out of mind'.

Good catch.

"The cure for anything is salt water~ sweat, tears, or the sea." ~Isak Denesen

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