Bilge Pump Check Valve Issues on 2013 Beneteau Oceanis 45 - SailNet Community

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Old 08-15-2013
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Bilge Pump Check Valve Issues on 2013 Beneteau Oceanis 45

Hi Folks,

We love our new Oceanis 45 but we have a problems with repeated failures of the bilge pump check valve. Has anyone else had these issues? and if so, what solutions have people come up with? Replacing the valve hasn't worked as even the best check valve is problematic and several have failed thus far.
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Old 08-15-2013
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Bilge Pump Check Valve Issues on 2013 Beneteau Oceanis 45

Personally ive never been a fan of check valves in bilge pump lines. too critical a system to have a likely failure point as you are experiencing.
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Old 08-16-2013
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Re: Bilge Pump Check Valve Issues on 2013 Beneteau Oceanis 45

Check valves are often installed in bilge discharge hoses when a large pump is put in a small bilge.

The discharge hose holds water after the pump stops and it flows back into the bilge.
With a large enough hose and a small enough bilge the back flow can cause the pump to turn back on and cycle on and off.

The check valve is an attempt to stop the back flow. It rarely works as the check valves leak. It slows the cycle but doesn't stop it.

A better way to deal with it is to install a smaller pump with a smaller hose that won't hold enough water to cycle the pump. Keep the bigger pump but mount it's switch a little higher than the small pumps switch. With luck the big pump will never turn on but it's there if you need it.
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Old 09-27-2013
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Re: Bilge Pump Check Valve Issues on 2013 Beneteau Oceanis 45

Yes. Same problem. The check valve in my opinion is a bandaid. The bilge in the 45 is recessed and of very small volume. It doesn't take much back flow to fill the small bilge recess. Also the check valve is mounted horizontally, I think ideally it should be vertically positioned.

My plan is to try eliminating the check valve and installing a loop in the hose to retain some water. I have some suspicions though that this will do nothing. The other problem is the long uphill run to the thru hull at the stern. I would like to change the hose length so that I can create an early sharp rise in the hose run followed by a gradual drop to the thru hull.
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Old 09-27-2013
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Re: Bilge Pump Check Valve Issues on 2013 Beneteau Oceanis 45

Catalina loves to install these things too. Is yours the bronze check valve or the "plastic" check valve?

Here is the ultimate solution if you want one. It isn't the cheapest or the easiest, but it has worked very well for me.

Install a diaphram pump (yours probbly has a centrifigal pump like a Rule or similar). Whale makes a check valve that is a very simply rubber flap instead of the more complicated gate type valve used in the bronze CV's. So install this cheap check valve at the very end of the sucking portion of the hose. This allows you to really pull your bilge dry and at a very low point. Plus, diaphram pumps have more power to push and pull water. However, here's the issue with Diaphram pumps: they do not move nearly as much water as a centrifugal.

SO what I did is I kept my centrifigal (still sitting in the bottom) but put another float switch on it higher than the float switch for the diaphram pump. This float switch also has an alarm (If it goes off, it means I have high water).

You have two options for discharge on the centrifigal pump. One (best way) is to run a whole other overboard. Most boaters don't want to do this. Another (At least in Catalina) is to use the manual pump line.

See, here's the key: You can still use your manual pump on a centrifigal pump due to its design. You cannot (do not) use it on a diaphram pump as you will not be able to suck through the diaphram pump.

Does that make sense? You now have the best of all worlds - two bilge pumps, a check valve and super-sucking diaphram pump, and a high volume centrifugal pump... plus you have an alarm and you retain your ability to use your manual pump without drilling holes and running more tubing in your boat.

Brian
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Old 09-27-2013
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Re: Bilge Pump Check Valve Issues on 2013 Beneteau Oceanis 45

We have a mid-sized Rule diaphragm bilge pump that works so well it will actually clear all of the water out of the bilge and the hose from the bilge to the pump itself. A key element of the arrangement is having a debris filter in the hose between the bilge and the pump. Our pump is placed fairly high in the machine space so that the run from the pump to the discharge is all "down hill". Accordingly, virtually nothing flows back into the bilge without any need of a check valve.

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