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-   -   Bilge Pumps Won't Suck (http://www.sailnet.com/forums/gear-maintenance/91501-bilge-pumps-wont-suck.html)

vtsailguy 08-29-2012 08:08 PM

Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
I had a bilge pump that wouldn't seem to "prime" and start sucking unless I waggled it about.

I replaced it with a new bigger one and seem to have the same problem. Even when there are a few inches, well above the impeller, it won't prime and suck.

The height to the hull outlet seems ok. Any ideas?

paul323 08-29-2012 08:58 PM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
Sorry to ask such a basic question, but are you sure that you did not wire it up backwards?

Try some systematic troubleshooting. So you have power, the impeller spins...check. Try it with the bilge pipe disconnected, of with a small length to check you are blowing not sucking - see if the water flows easily...basically test the pump/wiring. Perhaps put the pump in a bucket of water to test it.
If all the above shows a functioning pump, perhaps your bilge pipe is blocked. Try blowing down it!

Good luck...

Flybyknight 08-30-2012 02:26 AM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
This is a long shot, but is it possible that there is an obstruction in the discharge line (air lock) preventing bilge water from reaching the impeller? A sag in that line holding water is what I have in mind.
Dick

dacap06 08-30-2012 07:37 AM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
Did you try the pump without the hose attached? Also, I hope you aren't using a check valve. They tend to clog and cause exactly this kind of problem.

Maine Sail 08-30-2012 07:49 AM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by vtsailguy (Post 915870)
I had a bilge pump that wouldn't seem to "prime" and start sucking unless I waggled it about.

I replaced it with a new bigger one and seem to have the same problem. Even when there are a few inches, well above the impeller, it won't prime and suck.

The height to the hull outlet seems ok. Any ideas?

Get rid of the in-line check valve, which will cause exactly what you are seeing....

BluemanSailor 08-30-2012 08:34 AM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
I recently had a similar problem, it would prime but took forever for the level to go down. Turns out the bilge hose was composed of about 4 small pieces and at each joint it leaked like crazy. Replaced it with one continuous hose and now no problem. Amazing what PO's have done to their boats.

vtsailguy 08-30-2012 08:50 AM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
Good suggestions, I'll definitely check without the hose on.

Once it primes (wiggling it seems to do this), it pumps fine and will quickly empty the bilge.

This is the pump I have, it sits directly in the water
RULE INDUSTRIES Rule-Mate Fully Automatic Bilge Pumps at West Marine

rbrasi 08-30-2012 01:43 PM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
I believe this principle works with bilge pumps as well.
http://i3.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/...47/778/32b.jpg

vtsailguy 08-30-2012 02:24 PM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
lol

CapnBones 08-30-2012 02:33 PM

Re: Bilge Pumps Won't Suck
 
Hahaha excellent


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