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Gulfislander 04-29-2007 07:44 PM

Icebox Drain
I have just taken posession of a Niagara 31 (my first boat :D ). I found that the icebox drain is hooked to a footpump (tap water) by a two-way valve. To drain the ice box I flip the valve from the water tank to the icebox drain and use the drinking water foot pump to pump the effluent through the tap into the sink to drain away. To me this seems very unsanitary. I was thinking of connecting the icebox drain to one of the cockpit drains close to the hull to allow passive drainage. Do I need a shut off valve in this line or is there a better way in general to correct this problem? :confused:

Freesail99 04-29-2007 07:46 PM

The ice box drain on my boat emptys into my bilge.

SVDistantStar 04-29-2007 08:05 PM

If the bottom of the icebox is below the waterline, you might end up with an icebox full of sea-water. If you have a shower sump, plumb it there, if not go for the bilge.

sailingdog 04-29-2007 11:25 PM

Generally, I don't recommend draining an icebox into the bilge if at all avoidable. Food particles and such often end up in the ice box water, and then in the bilge... and that can lead to a very nasty smelling bilge after a while. Draining to the shower sump makes the most sense, but on many boats, this isn't all that feasible, since the head and the galley are far from each other. Another option would be to install a small shower-type sump with pump for the icebox drain.

The drain to the icebox should have a trap, like that you'd find under a sink otherwise, not only will the water drain out, but most of the cold air as well.

SVDistantStar 04-30-2007 01:01 AM

Sailingdog, never thought about a trap. My icebox drains into the bilge as of now, but it will go to the shower sump, once i install one. The current set up on my boat is pretty bad, both the bathroom sink and shower drain into the bilge. Im installing a shower sump for them and plan to plumb the icebox to it also.

SimonV 04-30-2007 04:15 AM

As the ice box drain has been connected to the fresh water system previously, I would recommend you disconnect it, don’t drink from the line, clean and disinfect the water tank, replace the water line from the tank to the pump and pump to the sink. Pull the pump apart and give it a good cleaning of replace it, it is a huge health risk. If you think about ice boxes/ fridges and the muck that gets spilt inside them including blood from raw chicken/steaks/fish, soft drink, wine, also people getting things out of the unit after using the head (YES NOT EVERY BODY WASHES THIER HANDS). Nothing that has the possibility to contaminate the fresh water supply should be allowed to come anywhere near let alone be connected to it.
:eek: :eek: :eek:

blt2ski 04-30-2007 11:05 AM

IIRC the icebox drain goes into the sink drain on my rig. Then again, it might be two different drains, but since the icebox and sink are near one another, I seem to recall them being tied together somehow.

If their is two thru hull drains, both are below waterline.

I do agree tho, that the method used seems unsanitary.


Freesail99 04-30-2007 11:11 AM

I am assuming that by "ice box" it is meant a cooler mounted under a counter top.

wolfenzee 08-31-2008 06:13 PM

That sounds sort of like the system I have designed for my boat. There was previously a foot pump operated "salt water rinse"(which was disconnected for maintenance but never reconnected). The sink is below the water line so drains into a bucket. My plan is to have the sink drain into a sump and use the foot pump (via a Y-valve) to empty the sump. I also plan to have ice melt drain into the sump, but because cold air also drains down hill there will a simple water trap so only water goes into the sump.

wolfenzee 08-31-2008 06:15 PM


Originally Posted by Freesail99 (Post 141396)
I am assuming that by "ice box" it is meant a cooler mounted under a counter top.

"Icebox" probably refers to refrigeration using 19th century technology, ie: a box with ice in it.

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