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jbondy 07-06-2010 09:09 AM

Pump problem or ??
I went to pump out the holding tank yesterday. When I turned on the macerator pump, which is done at the breaker box, the pump came on momentarily and the breaker switched off. I tried to turn it on a few times with the same result - momentary pump operation followed by immediate switching off of the breaker.

The pump is a relatively new Jabsco (new in terms of number of times used, a couple of dozen times at most, probably four years old) that is supposed to be able to run dry (which it certainly wasn't) and says it is "thermally protected". I believe the output is clear, i.e. the thru-hull was open, but I suppose it's possible there is a blockage. But would something like that cause such an immediate shut down? Would the thermal protection cause the breaker to blow, or would it just shut down the pump? If there was a short in the line, I wouldn't think I'd hear the pump come on, just get an immediate shut down of the breaker.

Anyway, I'm thinking that a simple replacement of the pump is in order, but wonder if there's more analysis to be done before plunking down a boat buck for new one.

Thanks in advance for any input.

sailingdog 07-06-2010 10:09 AM

The pump is probably jammed. If the impeller is stuck, the motor would draw excess current and trip the breaker in most cases... or burn out. :D It may be as simple as someone dropped something into the head that should not have gone in there... think sanitary products.. :D

eherlihy 07-06-2010 10:16 AM

Exactly what SD said.

Depending upon the configuration of your Y valve, you may be able to dislodge the offending item by: 1- pumping the tank with the through hull open. 2- leave the breaker off, position the Y valve to discharge, and then use a household plunger on the outside of the through hull.

Good luck! (and I hope that option 1 works)

sailingdog 07-06-2010 10:45 AM

BTW, good luck... :D

jbondy 07-06-2010 12:49 PM

Thanks! The head itself has a macerator pump, so anything that gets into the tank should already be chewed up pretty well. But I'll try anything before taking THAT system apart again.

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