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Old 18-04-2016, 09:54   #1
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LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

Hello friends,

We have a Raritan LectraSan unit that came with our boat, and we are just now getting to the plumming part of the refit. I have cleaned it out and did a once over with it before putting it back in the boat. It was originally wired with what I think was 6awg stiff house type wire and the length is about 28' from the circuit board to the unit, so a total of just under 60' roughly. From reading the manual, the proper wire I would need is 1awg wire. This will run about $230 for those lengths of wire.

My question(s) is(are) do I really need that size of wire for these units? It pulls max 50amps for 2 minutes, could I get say a 2awg or 4awg wire instead since it is such a short time?

Also, is it even worth having one? I'm trying to do my research on EPA laws and restrictions. From what I have read, the only NO discharge zones on the Gulf and East coasts are Destin Harbor, FL Keys, Clear Lake Texas, and then pretty much most of the NE. With that said, I can legally use this unit anywhere else and not need a holding tank, correct?

I don't have a problem getting the wire if it's beneficial and I can actually use the unit. As an aside, I have another head(aft) that will be both direct discharge and holding tank with pumpouts. The forward head will be just plumbed to the Lectrasan unit to overboard.

Thanks for any help,

Ronnie
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Old 18-04-2016, 12:09   #2
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

The ElectroScan is an updated version of the LectraSan and draws significantly less juice. Mine draws about 35 to 40 amps and works great with 4 gauge wire.
It's also got electronic smarts which can tell if it's working correctly, if the salt concentration is good enough etc.
With LiFePo4 battery, I always see 100% voltage reading on the ElectroScan screen when it's doing a flush treatment.

You are right about not needing a holding tank except for NDZ's as long as you're in salt water.
If in brackish water, you might need a salt tank addition.
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Old 18-04-2016, 12:24   #3
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

I find mine invaluable. Not all marinas around here have pumpout capabilities and my endurance away from port is greatly increased.

I've been inspected by the USCG and the installation passed with them. My head is plumbed to the ElectroScan, the ElecroScan is plumbed to a holding tank, then there is a Y vavle between a macerator pump/thru hull for overboard discharge, or the pumpout fitting on the hull.

This gives me the best of both worlds. I can hold treated sewage in NDZ's or choose when I blow the tank ( ie when no one is swimming around the boat) when not in a NDZ


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Old 18-04-2016, 14:46   #4
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by senormechanico View Post
The ElectroScan is an updated version of the LectraSan and draws significantly less juice. Mine draws about 35 to 40 amps and works great with 4 gauge wire.
It's also got electronic smarts which can tell if it's working correctly, if the salt concentration is good enough etc.
With LiFePo4 battery, I always see 100% voltage reading on the ElectroScan screen when it's doing a flush treatment.

You are right about not needing a holding tank except for NDZ's as long as you're in salt water.
If in brackish water, you might need a salt tank addition.
OK cool, I may step down to 2awg then as I have lithium batteries and won't see any voltage sag. I have the middle generation unit, the unit with the push button panel not the dial.

How do you have yours wired? Straight to a breaker on the panel? Did you have to get a new larger 50-60amp breaker?

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Old 18-04-2016, 14:49   #5
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

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Originally Posted by neptunesjester View Post
I find mine invaluable. Not all marinas around here have pumpout capabilities and my endurance away from port is greatly increased.

I've been inspected by the USCG and the installation passed with them. My head is plumbed to the ElectroScan, the ElecroScan is plumbed to a holding tank, then there is a Y vavle between a macerator pump/thru hull for overboard discharge, or the pumpout fitting on the hull.

This gives me the best of both worlds. I can hold treated sewage in NDZ's or choose when I blow the tank ( ie when no one is swimming around the boat) when not in a NDZ


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Great, thanks. I guess I'll just get the wire and hook it back up for the reasons you mention.

I'll ask you the same question as above, how did you wire your unit up?

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Old 19-04-2016, 09:21   #6
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

I've had one since 2007. Never gave me a problem. For the power supply, I just spliced 4G wire into the windlass wires, which run close to the unit. Uses the windlass circuit breaker, as they are never used at the same time, this is quite safe and helps with not stringing fat wires all over the boat. I'd also suspect that in actual use conditions the Lectroscan is more eco-friendly than a holding tank. In Nova Scotia, outside Halifax and 2 marinas in the Bras d'Or lakes, there is nowhere you can pump out a holding tank.
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Old 19-04-2016, 11:08   #7
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

I ran 4 awg from the battery to a 50amp breaker at the unit. The connection at the battery is fused as well (100amp if I remember correctly). Using a 200 ah 12v lead acid battery bank, the display reads ~95% voltage with no charging source on the battery during cycle. That includes the same bank running the head flush itself, the fresh water pump (fresh water flush), and the solenoid for the head fresh water, and the fresh water pump feeding the salt feed bucket. The head and fresh water pump are a combined ~40amp draw added to the electroscan flush cycle.

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Old 19-04-2016, 16:02   #8
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SailRedemption View Post
OK cool, I may step down to 2awg then as I have lithium batteries and won't see any voltage sag. I have the middle generation unit, the unit with the push button panel not the dial.

How do you have yours wired? Straight to a breaker on the panel? Did you have to get a new larger 50-60amp breaker?

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I have 4 ga on a 40 foot round trip to a 60 amp breaker with LiFepO4.
The panel on the ElectroScan always reads 100% during flush cycle.
With solar panels batterywise, we're always in fat city.
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Old 19-04-2016, 16:27   #9
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

I forgot to add my wiring is a 50 ft round trip circuit


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Old 20-04-2016, 04:38   #10
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

Add the Florida Keys to your list of prohibited areas. Replaced mine with a composting head. Legal everywhere. I did leave one seldom used traditional head with Lectrasan in the V berth with a door lock for certain areas where I may get a hassel.
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Old 20-04-2016, 18:27   #11
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

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Add the Florida Keys to your list of prohibited areas. Replaced mine with a composting head. Legal everywhere. I did leave one seldom used traditional head with Lectrasan in the V berth with a door lock for certain areas where I may get a hassel.
Just remember, the care and feeding of these units is a bit like a watermaker.
You need to refresh them every few days so they don't get clogged with bacterial growth.
Even if you don't use it, flush it and run the cycle.
And Yes I know, if you're in an NDZ it's probably illegal to do that.
Do I care, no. IT'S JUST MAINTENANCE !
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Old 21-04-2016, 04:02   #12
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Re: LectraSan EC: Is it worth it?

Great information, appreciate it guys!

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