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Catalina 38
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So we bought a Catalina 38 and found the previous boat owner unfortunately hooked the head up directly to the fresh water tanks. I know that's a huge no no. The boat has no funky smells though so looking for sanitary options. Luckily the thru hull is still in place.

Reading peggies book, seems like the fresh water drain to keep salt water from resting in the pipes is the most economical option to keep things roughly the same. Our challenge is that every drain in the boat (shower, both sinks, a/c condensation, fridge drain) go to shower sump boxes to pump it all out to an above water thru hull. Nice dry bilge.

For the Peggie hack to work with this setup, I am thinking I need a Y valve in addition to the tee. (Blue - bathroom drain, orange - head raw water, red the Peggie 'mod' )

This look about right? Over complicating anything?



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bell ringer
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I have fresh water flush on my head. But I don't really understand what the question is as fresh water to the head has nothing to do with a head Y valve or a shower sump
 

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Catalina 38
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It's a manual head direct plumbed to water tanks. The Peggie mod for occasionally flushing freshwater through manual head that is also plumbed to raw water..normally has a T between the sink drain and the raw water close to the thru hull.

My impression (could be wrong) is why only a T works in that setup is an assumption that the sink drain normally drains through a thru hull.mine doesn't, it goes into a sump box. Which, feels like it complicated things as the raw water could choose to run over to the sump box during idle operation and siphon.
 

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I'm having trouble following as well. As long as there is an appropriate "break" to prevent toilet contents from backing up to the fresh water supply, using fresh water is fine. Of course, it uses potable water for something where salt water would do fine. Especially if living aboard and one keeps the raw water from sitting long.

The easiest way to fill the waste lines with fresh water, if one has a raw water intake, is to fill the bowl from the sink, and flush prior to departing.
 

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Using salt water to flush the head is the quickest way I know of to introduce "boat smell" into your boat. After completely renovating the heads plumbing with a new Raritan toilet, new hoses, new holding tank and new pump out pump I would never introduce salt water into the system. No I don't have a tee or a back flow breaker device, I simply use the shower wand to fill the bowl. I don't use the fresh water tank for potable water because I'm only a weekday warrior so water supply is not a concern for me. If you're a full time cruiser then I guess the water supply issue would have significantly more sway in opting to use salt water.
 

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Catalina 38
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
There is no break in the fresh water now.. it's a hose directly plumbed from tank to the toilet inlet. This is unsanitary as the toilet manual piston pump does not provide a break. (Raritan pH ii)

The pictures are the after, where you flush with seawater normal, then at end of day you fill the sink with fresh water, close seacock and flush the toilet using the sink as the supply just to get the seawater out of the system (much like now).
 

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Catalina 38
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If the fresh water system is pressurized, there鈥檚 no issue with using fresh water for the toilet.
It is not the feed to the toilet is from before pressurized, totally manual toilet. Thats what I am trying to undo in a way that doesn't invite stench
 

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Oh, that鈥檚 different. Not good.

I think switching to salt water flush is a good answer with the ability to run some fresh water through the lines whenever you finish with the boat. Leaving the boat with fresh water in the lines will help eliminate boat stink issues. I鈥榙 use the shower head if you have one nearby.
 

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Catalina 38
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yeah more pictures

Current state
Gesture Rectangle Elbow Font Parallel


Future state based on Peggy halls book, but in the book only a single tee is needed but, I think cause I drain into sump, I also need a Y

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I tried to use Peggy's system on my boat, and it failed. Not enough suction power from the toilet to draw on the sink's tubing lines. I think you've hit on the way to fix that with your Y valve. That will cut off the rest of the plumbing from the toilet pump suction and let it draw directly from the sink drain.
 

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I changed both my heads to freshwater flush when I installed new units as soon as I bought my boat ten years ago. They always stink after a period of non-use if you use seawater, and freshwater solves the problem鈥攑eriod.
Read the article at Installing two electric toilets (If this link doesn鈥檛 work go to my site and find 鈥渇reshwater flushing鈥 in the nav bars.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
I changed both my heads to freshwater flush when I installed new units as soon as I bought my boat ten years ago. They always stink after a period of non-use if you use seawater, and freshwater solves the problem鈥攑eriod.
Read the article at Installing two electric toilets (If this link doesn鈥檛 work go to my site and find 鈥渇reshwater flushing鈥 in the nav bars.)
Thanks for link. Certainly going to pressurized fresh water flush toilets is an option as well. Do you know of anyone who's tried this with manual flush.. not so sure about plumbing pressurized water into the manual pump system.

As far as just converting to an electric toilet/pressurized water.. our use of the boat we expect to hardly ever actually use the toilet on the boat vs marina was trying to be a bit more economical about it.

Maybe there's a black Friday toilet special :). Or Y valves.
 

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I switched to fresh water flush too. What I did was put a tee and two valves in the sink drain. The tee and one valve lead to the head, the other valve is in the sink drain. If you close the sink drain valve, fill the sink with fresh water, and with the tee valve open you flush with the water in the sink. You just have to remember to open the drain valve when you want the sink to drain overboard.
 

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I use tank water for flush water. The sink with a hand shower is next to the head and it is used to fill the bowl.
Our head does not smell.
 

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Two T-valves need to be manipulated each time one flushes, if I understand the diagram correctly. That seems complicated. I'm sure one would develop muscle memory, but no way a guest would take to it very easily.

If the sink faucet is also the shower head, it can be used to fill the bowl directly and avoid the trouble. Or maybe install a shower head on a hose would be easier.

I do not personally think that using sea water to flush is a high cause of odor. It doesn't smell at all, until the micro organisms die, which take a day or so. If aboard, one would expect to be flushing and emptying the tank often enough. The waste line can be rinsed once, if leaving the boat, with fresh water. It's only the intake hose that keep standing sea water and it indeed smells like low tide on the first flush a week later. One and done and I don't even think that permeates the intake hose. If it does, it's typically the easiest hose to replace (no waste). Sea water does increase the rate of scaling on waste line, I understand.
 
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Catalina 38
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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
I forgot to add that this was published in SAIL magazine, and they review technical articles like this. It鈥檚 been flawless for many years. JR
Great.. and now just realized, and perhaps this is the rairitan conversion kit you were talking about being $200 in your article but rairitan now has manual flushing pressurized fresh water toilets ("fresh flush") and also see at least Hodges marine sells a conversion from an PHII (what we have) to fresh flush.. half the price of a new fresh flush toilet. But, the benefit of either is no need to run electrical. Admittedly, you need electricity to pressurize the water so the benefit of a manual flusher is kinda moot at that point. So, things to ponder.
 

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Catalina 38
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Two T-valves need to be manipulated each time one flushes,
The idea here is use raw water most of the time. When you are closing up the boat for being away/stagnant raw wate, then you flip the valve(s)/close seacock , fill the sink, draw that through everything to rinse with fresh. Then when opening the boat back up put things back to raw water. So, more of a maintenance routine setup vs every flush
 

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The idea here is use raw water most of the time. When you are closing up the boat for being away/stagnant raw wate, then you flip the valve(s)/close seacock , fill the sink, draw that through everything to rinse with fresh. Then when opening the boat back up put things back to raw water. So, more of a maintenance routine setup vs every flush
Beat me to it! That was/is the idea.
 
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