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garyp 01-25-2006 05:47 PM

Cleaning water tanks
I need to flush and clean the water tanks in my Pearson 323. The access plate is small and at least one of the tanks has "stuff" floating/growing in it. Any suggestions on magic substances that will clean my tanks?
Thanks, Gary

hamiam 01-25-2006 06:17 PM

Cleaning water tanks
what i have done in the past is to pump the tank as dry as possible. then, if u can, use a wet-dry vac or some sort of scrubber to get rid of any slime or solid matter in the tank. then i wud fill the tank with a solution of either bleach and water or perhaps peroxide and water and let it sit for between several hours and a day. then flush the tank with fresh water several times to get rid of the bleach smell. use sweet water or other conditioner in the tank and a filter before the faucet.

garyp 01-27-2006 09:26 AM

Cleaning water tanks
Thanks for the reply. Because the access plate is small I can''t do much scrubbing. I''ll try bleach and water. Any hints on a mix ratio?

merc2dogs 01-28-2006 07:21 AM

Cleaning water tanks
fairly strong, I have used a mix of 9:1 water bleach and had good results on extremely nasty tanks, but it takes some serious flushing afterwards.

something that works with the right tanks is to use a sealer cap the kind used on some clothes washers to seal of off unused water ports, fits right on the end of the hose, drill a small hole in it and use a length small copper tube to make a spray wand, you can with a little care work it into the tank, and bend it so you can spray the whole inner surface, the smaller diameter will increase the speed/power of the water jet so it can clean off any grubnge inside the tank. If there is a partition in the tank you need to either drill a hole to get the wand in, or se if you can reach from the outlet side, assuming outlet and fill are on either side of the baffle. most of the tanks I''ve cleaned have been fully accessable using a combination of the fill/outlet/ and vent ports, only HAD to put an access on 1 tank so far, but I have to clean the tank on my triton, and it looks as though I''ll need to install one there.
With a little searching at a good hardware store you can find ready made fittings that will work for the hose end.

alternate is to place an inspection port on either side of the baffle so you can reach in side and scrub, if you do that find some food grade sealers to bed the ports, if fiberglass tanks, use some good epoxy type paint or resin to seal the fresh cut edges and keep the water from working into the laminate.


garyp 01-29-2006 02:25 AM

Cleaning water tanks
Thanks for the reply Ken. I have decided to install extra access ports, fairly easy since they are poly. I''ll bed them with aquarium grade silicone.

sailnaway 02-06-2006 11:33 AM

Cleaning water tanks
Bleach is good but do not use the cheep stuff. Bleach is only good if it is plain bleach Clorox Brand. Imports have soap and other things in them Clorox is pure bleach as long as it has no other marking on the lable like Downey fresh or some thing.So a gallon of bleack is what $2.50 so get a couple and shock the tank with both gallons and fill the tank all the way up. Bleach kills everything thats why they give it to junkies to kill the AIDS virus on the needle they use. But Check it out Clorox is pure bleach and fit for water I use a 1/4 cup in the tank about every two months and do the shock once a year,did I say i pump it through all the lines also. You can save it and use it to defunk fenders or bilges what ever. It kills mold also. CLOROX import brands British bleach has soaps in it. They do make a Pure Bleach but I don''t have the name of the British brand.

Shortman 02-12-2006 07:55 AM

Vinegar rinse
A vinegar rinse as described in several threads at, either "ask all sailors" or "the headmistress" works well to get rid of the bleach. Basically about a gallon for a 25 gallon tank, best to slosh around under weigh (same w/bleach), then flush with lotsa water. I did this to both tanks last year & worked very well. They weren't as dirty though.

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