calcium buildup in sanitation hoses - SailNet Community

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Old 06-29-2013
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calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

I replaced all my sanitation hoses less then 2 years ago and installed a y valve in the line. I had noticed that the y valve would not switch over all t he way so today I pulled it out and found there was significant buildup of calcium already. I normally use fresh water to flush so I was surprised to see so much buildup of calcium. I took the valve apart and soaked it in vinegar. The vinegar seemed to really loosen up the calcium so I was able to clean up nicely. Was wondering if running a couple of gallons of vinegar into the system and leaving it for a day would help to clear up the calcium deposits. Anyone ever tried that?
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Old 06-29-2013
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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

If you break enough calcium chunks off, it can clog, particularly where the hose meets a tank or fitting.

Don't ask how I know.

If they're calcified, I would leave them alone until you inevitably replace them.
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Old 06-29-2013
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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

Vinigar will do nothing to calcium buildups.
Its a silly old sailors wives tale. Take a chunch of calcium out of the hose and put in it vinigar for a day/week/month/10 years and you will see it the same.

When you put on new hoses make sure you pump out all the fluid and then do 10 to 20 fast pumps that will pump air into the hose.



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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

It sure seemed to make the calcium softer on the inside of the y valve. After about 10 minutes it was shot enough that I was able to scrape it off. Before it was like cement.
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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

Vinegar is largely a waste of time. Muriatic acid might work but there are a lot of issues with that. As an alternative, pick up some RydLyme; Barnacle Buster or a similar product, run it through your lines and let it sit for a day or two and then thoroughly flush you system. In future, use something like Salt-Away, added to the final rinse of your head/waste lines after every use, and you won't have to deal with the matter again.

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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

I busted it all up just removing the hose and reconnecting them. After a while, everyone needs new.
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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

Thanks for the input. Like I said was surprised that I had this much buildup since I replaced all the sanitation hose less then 2 years ago.
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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

In the cruising communities around the world the sight of someone whaling a length of sanitation hose against a stern ladder or dock wall while wearing rubber gloves is a common one.

As a full time liveaboard I expect to do this about every two years.

I do have a length of spare hose too.
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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

I sailed and lived aboard in the Bahamas for a lot of years and once I pounded the calcium out of those hoses vineger kept them clean from then on! Also it keeps the bowl white. If you leave the boat unattended for a while flush some veg. oil thru. to keep all those valves lubricated.
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Re: calcium buildup in sanitation hoses

The veggie sounds like a good idea.
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