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Old 09-11-2014, 14:53   #1
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Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

Hi Fellow Cruisers,

I've got a question for those of you that primarily cruise the Pacific Northwest.

It's come time to replace the aft head hoses on our boat. The PO had replaced the forward head hoses before we purchased it, and removed the Y-valve and the direct discharge hose entirely. (Which makes sense. It's pretty much illegal to dump anywhere we normally cruise - I'm not sure about the northern parts of Canada, but it's unlikely we'd ever take it that far.)

The question is: Is there any benefit or reason for keeping the aft head Y-valve and direct discharge hose? I'd thought it might be a negative as far as eventually resale - but in talking with others - some makes of our boat weren't even built with the direct discharge. (And as a side note - we also have a macerator on each tank - although I don't know if they work).

If I don't need to run yet another length of hose - that will save me some time and $$$.
Thanks,
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Old 09-11-2014, 18:10   #2
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

If you're running offshore outside 3 miles why wouldn't you want to discharge overboard? There are plenty of open bodies of water even in the Inside Pass you could do this.


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Old 09-11-2014, 18:35   #3
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

Uhm, would the almost absolute lack of pump out stations affect your choice?
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Old 09-11-2014, 19:12   #4
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

even better question is how can you convert a nice triangular fitted plastic black water tank to a fresh water holding tank?.
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Old 09-11-2014, 19:13   #5
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

Go for it. As long as you can pump your holding tank overboard why bother with a Y valve? Everything into the tank, pump out tank offshore. Or get pumped out when you can.

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Old 09-11-2014, 19:34   #6
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

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Go for it. As long as you can pump your holding tank overboard why bother with a Y valve? Everything into the tank, pump out tank offshore.
I could never understand the logic of pumping everything into the HT if it's going overboard anyway.
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Old 09-11-2014, 19:48   #7
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

Unless you can frequently direct discharge there isn't any reason keep a Y-valve arrangement on the boat. I have 2 heads and holding tanks and neither have direct discharge.
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Old 09-11-2014, 20:05   #8
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

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Unless you can frequently direct discharge there isn't any reason keep a Y-valve arrangement on the boat. I have 2 heads and holding tanks and neither have direct discharge.

That's my thinking. With the macerators still there, I still have the option to empty the tank if needed/possible.

Thanks for confirming my thoughts.


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Old 09-11-2014, 20:09   #9
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

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I could never understand the logic of pumping everything into the HT if it's going overboard anyway.

I suppose it's "the timing". If you're far offshore, it wouldn't matter. If you're in and out of the coastline, you can always store it until the moment that you are far enough out where you can dump it.


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Old 09-11-2014, 20:58   #10
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

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That's my thinking. With the macerators still there, I still have the option to empty the tank if needed/possible.

Thanks for confirming my thoughts.
And when, not if, your macerator pump dies...like mine did last year, you wish you'd kept the Y valve.
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Old 09-11-2014, 22:54   #11
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

I'm in Seattle and every couple of years get into Canada. Pumpouts are a rarity in Canada.

My setup goes directly into the holding tank. The hose to the pumpout has a tee in it. The tee path goes to a guzzler diaphragm pump to a seacock/throughull. 99% of the time I use a pumpout. In Canada I can pump overboard when away from their no discharge bays, and away from the 2-3 pumpouts available.

If you're worried about it add a shutoff valve at the tee to the diaphragm pump.
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Old 10-11-2014, 05:26   #12
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

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I'm in Seattle and every couple of years get into Canada. Pumpouts are a rarity in Canada.



My setup goes directly into the holding tank. The hose to the pumpout has a tee in it. The tee path goes to a guzzler diaphragm pump to a seacock/throughull. 99% of the time I use a pumpout. In Canada I can pump overboard when away from their no discharge bays, and away from the 2-3 pumpouts available.



If you're worried about it add a shutoff valve at the tee to the diaphragm pump.

Canada gets mad when Cruise ships are found violating MARPOL regs in their waters by direct discharge inside 3nm, but then pump their sewage directly into the Strait if Juan de Fuca. Priorities are all jacked up.


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Old 10-11-2014, 08:13   #13
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

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Originally Posted by Sssssailor View Post
Canada gets mad when Cruise ships are found violating MARPOL regs in their waters by direct discharge inside 3nm, but then pump their sewage directly into the Strait if Juan de Fuca. Priorities are all jacked up.


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Is your point just a rant on B.C. government or were you commenting on me pumping overboard in B.C.

I think if one follows the rules / guidelines Environment B.C. for recreational boats has, it is very reasonable. The amount that recreational boaters put in the water is low, using pumpouts when available, and pumping overboard outside of low flow bays seems too logical to have been agreed on by politicians.


Boating and Marine Activities

If no pump-out facilities are available, only release sewage in open waters which are not designated and that have good tidal flushing action. Do not release sewage near marinas or in bays, inlets and other sensitive areas such as shellfish leases.
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Old 10-11-2014, 08:25   #14
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

Absolutely. I love to rant about the hypocrisy of the so called "environmentally friendly" Canadian govt. I just used your message cause of the note on how few pump-out stations are available to rec boaters.


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Old 10-11-2014, 09:26   #15
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Re: Any reason to maintain direct discharge in the PNW?

Keep the Y valve, someday you'll need it and be glad you kept it. Macerator pumps break and pump out stations outside of some US marinas are rare. Sometimes in places like California, it's difficult to find a pump out station that actually works.

The best, most reliable system we've used is the electric macerated toilets to direct gravity discharge via an elevated holding tank. The closed system you've described was the worst as far as reliability. Seems like the macerator pumps were always broken or the hoses persistently permeated by odor due to poo sitting in them. Our friends had the same ongoing problems with their boat.

Keep the Y valve, it will make it easier to flush your system clean when the boat isn't in use.
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