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  #1  
Old 05-03-2011
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Water tank question

So I just bought a 1977 31' Prout Quest and just learned where my water tanks are. I thought it was the bilge! Couldn't figure out why there was water in there. It is basically just a space under a floor board and watertight hatched area in each of the hulls. And it isn't pretty. One is filled with antifreeze and the other water is almost black.

My question is: is there a word for having the tanks like this? I guess I don't consider them "proper tanks" (as in a rectangular enclosed box).

Second question, do I just have to clean them like I would were they a box? As in the RV threads I've seen with chlorine? Their bizarre shape would make it difficult to get a proper scrub in and most likely I'm just going to need the chemical action to do the scrubbing for me.

Thoughts?
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Old 05-03-2011
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Gotta see pics of this! sounds nasty... but you should be able to clean and have clean fresh water in them to.. err... drink? Anyways.. bleach in the old water to kill the nasties, then pump em out. if the covers are full size, cleaning should not be too difficult with cleaners and scrubbing. I'd really be concerned about the lines to the sinks and stuff.
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Old 05-03-2011
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RV's are square, so square things fit in nicely. Boats are not, and square things on a boat waste a lot of space around them. It is not uncommon to have all sorts of fully shapes in tanks on a boat, whether for fuel, waste or water.

I too have a built in bilge tank in my 1964 boat. I think this practice has gone my the way side in favor of cold molded, funny shaped plastic tanks. Likely this change occurred mostly due to the easier manufacturing of such tanks these days. 40 years ago they where harder to make, so just molding in a void in the hull was easier.

Personally I do not see much of a difference in the two. I like the fact that mine is in the bilge as the water stays cooler, but I do worry a bit about intrusion of bad water from the bilge as the after market, home made inspection port is not the greatest, and I have yet too figure out how to remedy that.

I say clean it like any other tank and see how they come out.
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Old 05-04-2011
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Ok. Thanks. I realized why the former owners have six sun showers aboard!! To do their washing! They had lived it on it, but then made it their weekender sailboat (can I tell you how fun it was to realize they had left their full portapotties aboard?--actually not as disgusting as I thought it would be to empty it).

The joys of new boat ownership. We are a special sort. I'll let you know how it goes with the tanks! I filled the antifreeze one up with more water and drained that one. Will do again and then try the bleach shock. There is just a 6" diameter screw off cap to get into that so not sure how successful I would be with cleaning
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Old 05-05-2011
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Surely there must be some sort of a lining to keep the taste of GRP out of the water - even if only when the boat was new.
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Old 05-05-2011
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For starters, I would replace every freshwater line. Wouldn't even bother cleaning, inspecting, nothing. Black water? Gross.

Can you cut the top off these bilge tanks and epoxy them back on later in order to scrub the bilges before the chlorine treatment? Shock treatment isn't going to remove everything and won't even sterilize if there is a barrier of gunk (I'm still thinking black water). Then I would consider relining the bilges with either new glass, epoxy or a bladder. It would depend a bit on whether I ever want to consider even cooking with that water. I suspect I never would.

If I found someone's old filled porta potties, I would light the boat on fire to disinfect it, so take my suggestions with that in mind.
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Old 05-05-2011
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I cleaned my used scuzzy tank with "B-BRITE CLEANER", a product many people use to clean wine/beer bottles/equipment etc.. It came out like new inside.

google it, readily avail. and it disolves almost any organics. dose it a bit heavy and let it work it's magic. (this is a common FDA restaurant/bar cleaner).

"Nu-Foam" is a Bar sanitizer for when it's clean that supposedly kills everything known to man (it's the blue Bar glass rinse that bartenders use)

less than $20 for both w/o shipping or find it locally in a Rest. supply store
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