Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 09-10-2015, 11:37   #46
Marine Service Provider
 
peghall's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,533
Re: Gray Water Tank Maintenance

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
So how do you clean any oil that may be in your bilges out? Even if you get on your hands and knees and clean it out with paper towels, what do you do with them?
First, BEFORE adding any detergent cleaner ('cuz once detergent mixes with oil, they no longer work), use oil absorbing pads, pillows to soak up the oil, changing as often as necessary and disposing of 'em in the containers designated for oil disposal. Then you can use whatever method you like to clean the bilge (I used a power washer--carefully!--to reach areas I couldn't get to easily by hand). However you won't have a clean bilge unless you also rinse thoroughly with clean water...any more than you'd have a clean sink or bathtub unless you rinse it out.

A bit more labor intensive than just pouring bilge cleaner into the bilge and calling that "cleaning the bilge," but shouldn't be necessary more than once or twice a year, especially if you KEEP bilge pads (disposable diapers work pretty well and cost less) where oil drips/collects--again, replacing as necessary..and you'll be amazed at how much better your boat will smell, 'cuz a wet dirty bilge is a primordial soup that can make a whole boat smell like a swamp or even a sewer and is also a breeding ground for mold.

As for "dilution is the solution"... It only applies to organics (sewage spills etc) and some chemicals...it doesn't work for petroleum. If it did, there'd be no need for booms,"oil-eating" bacteria etc to deal with oil spills...they'd just let the tide or current take care of the problem. But petroleum doesn't dilute...you'll still see it in coastal marshes etc years after a major spill. They don't use detergents because detergents don't dilute, they just break up the oil molecules...they aren't changed, just dissolved....like some rock dissolves into sand.

Now...aren't you glad you asked?
__________________
2017 Peggie Hall
Specializing in marine sanitation since 1987
Author "The NEW Get Rid of Boat Odors"
https://www.amazon.com/New-Get-Rid-B...dp/1892399784/
peghall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2015, 12:48   #47
Moderator
 
a64pilot's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Albany Ga.
Boat: Island Packet 38
Posts: 17,024
Re: Gray Water Tank Maintenance

Peggie,
I know who you are by reputation and I respect that.
Firstly I don't have any engine leaks, no seeps either, I've made my living maintaining and testing aircraft and I cannot stand a dirty engine, my engine is cleaner than most peoples dishes, I have no need for oil absorbent pads, but I have several under my engine, just as I have several fire extinguishers, because I have had oil leaks in the past and will again. I put a remote mount oil filter on not too long ago only to have the O ring fail and dump oil, but none went into the bilge, it all was caught in the pan under the engine.
But my bilge is not bone dry, I have the old fashioned shaft seal and a keel stepped mast,so when it rains, I get rain down my mast. I have no idea what it is, but slime seems to form in my bilge, I'm not talking about enough so it smells or anything, but you can see and feel it on the fiberglass, and a little dust of course because well boats get dusty too.

I have never pressure washed my bilge and don't intend to, not when a few tablespoons of dish washing detergent keeps them clean. I don't understand how a few teaspoons of dish washing detergent is bad for the environment, not anyway since phosphate was removed how many decades ago? We put way more detergent in the water form our sink washing dishes than we do from our bilge.

And yes, believe it or not but nature has a way of taking care of even petroleum, we are not talking spills like the Valdez here, ships sink even in peace time taking thousands of gallons of oil with them when they do, and yet nature struggles on.

But even if there were a few ounces of oil in my bilge, and I do the right thing and soak it up with absorbent pads, what then? Throw them away? Where is away, exactly?

Vast majority of petroleum that ends up in my Marina basin comes from the parking lot, when it rains the storm drains dump into the basin bringing with it all the oil from the cars that leak it, there is no oil separator in the storm drains and they are cheap and easy to install. The evilness of emulsifying oil is that the emulsified oil will flow through a separator, but if there is no separator, then it's irrelevant.

I think the amount of petroleum coming from sailboat bilges to be minuscule compared to other discharges.
__________________

__________________
a64pilot is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2015, 15:58   #48
Marine Service Provider
 
peghall's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,533
Re: Gray Water Tank Maintenance

You're taking my comments WAAAAY too personally! Forums are public conversation...a LOT of people read what all of us write here...I try never to forget that.

And sailboats aren't the only boats on the water. I bought fuel at a marina that kept detergent on hand at the fuel dock to get rid of spills evidence that would have cost 'em big bucks in fines...a dockmate who'd lost at least a quart of transmission fluid in his bilge didn't even bother with detergent, just turned on a hose and his bilge pumps. Both his life and his YC membership were seriously endangered by that stunt! So they're out there...and neither ignorance nor indifference is in short supply among too many of today's new boat owners. If my "shoe" doesn't fit your foot, ok. With any luck, I may have opened someone's eyes to something they hadn't thought of before. ( Sheesh, Peggie...mix a few more metaphors!) However, I was actually taking aim at the hypocrisy of the environmental extremists...you were just unlucky enough to have strayed into the target area.

I'm assuming your asking where to dispose of used bilge pads was a serious question... Most marinas these days have separate disposal facilities for used motor oil etc. That's where used bilge pads are supposed to go.

It's 5:00 on Friday...I finally finished my new book today...it's cocktail hour! Have a good weekend, y'all!
__________________
2017 Peggie Hall
Specializing in marine sanitation since 1987
Author "The NEW Get Rid of Boat Odors"
https://www.amazon.com/New-Get-Rid-B...dp/1892399784/
peghall is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
maintenance, water

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Gray Water Tank Requirements in US ? sgkramer Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 13 21-10-2011 14:16
Gray Water Tank - Do You Have One ? Dame.n.Jess Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 5 14-03-2011 22:53
Fresh Water, Gray Water and Black Water Holding Tanks vweber Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 8 12-05-2010 17:31
how do you handle your gray water? donnie144 Liveaboard's Forum 23 04-01-2009 02:38
gray water policy Loith General Sailing Forum 2 16-12-2005 20:41



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 20:01.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.