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Re: Watermaker Virgin
I am in the process of buying a new boat and struggling with which water maker and the type of pump. The boat will have a genset of 5kw and hold 200 gallons of water. I have looked at the echotec and spectra. I would rather not run the echotec off the engine and would like to have the most redundancy possible. If I chose a AC model that can be run from an inverter, I have the engine alternator and genset as power sources in case one does not start. Any thougths on echotec vs. spectra?
It's been awhile since I've posted on SailNet. Choosing the right watermaker to fit your needs and your boats capabilities is not as simple as some would have you think. It takes a bit of thought and consideration and both asking the right questions and knowing the right questions to ask. First, I'm not a big fan of engine driven watermakers, especially on smaller diesel engines. It seems logical at first but you must be careful that adding a heavy high pressure pump does not affect your engines balance. Many manufacturers, especially Yanmar will void your warranty as soon as the see one of these bolted to their engines. There are some side loading issues with larger pumps as well. But in fairness there are those that swear by them, but not me. Tying your watermaking capabilities to a generator adds a second weak link. If your generator fails so does your AC driven watermaker. But these are popular with many and as long as there is plenty of AC from the generator they work fine. I'm a bigger proponent of DC watermakers because of their efficiency and they don't rely on a generator to operate but they will be fine with a generator running. If you are looking for redundancy in a watermaker then DC provides that with the generators capability as well. Also if redundancy is a prime objective then Spectras Cape Horn Extreme is an option to look at. It is the only watermaker on the market that has two feed pumps and if one fails the other will still make water and not require quick emergency repair, a nice feature to have when away from a supplier. Don't be easily fooled that bigger is always better. When sizing any watermaker many factors need to be taken into consideration and a good balance between use, needs, capacity, the type of cruising you intend to do, how many people on average are on board, and realizing your water usage will increase even if you are very water conscious, should be seriously discussed. If you'd like I'd be happy to expand upon this and help you get a better idea and a better comfort zone before you spend your money.