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Old 10-11-2011, 09:26   #61
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How to mount a Wema water level sensor

Hi all,
If you want to add or replace a Wema water tank level sensor, you have to bend the sensor. Or drill a hole in the deck. I preferred the first way.

I did this twice, once to add a level sensor to the second tank, once to replace the broken original sensor.
Bending did not (yet) damage the sensor. I bent them carefully over my knee, taking care to have a somewhat constant radius, and without making sharp bends. I kept checking whether it would already go in, and then bent a little bit more.
I have taken apart the original broke sensor to see what's inside. The sensor has (as expected) reed relays and resistors inside, the ring is a magnet.
The reed relays and resistors are mounted on a very narrow, long, fibreglass printed circuit board. This can be bent very well in one direction. In the other direction it might break easily.
So, twice I have been lucky to bend it in the right direction.
Your best bet is to bend it IN THE PLANE OF THE WIRES EXITING.
Before mounting you can test whether you damaged it easily with a multimeter, it should go from 190 to 0 ohms when you slide the magnet.

The pictures are of the broken sensor. I had to bend this one while still in the tank to remove it, that is why you see sharp bends. Still, this did not break the printed circuit board.
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Old 25-11-2011, 13:06   #62
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

After a 4 month remote cruise here in Australia we were one day out of port, and hauling in a fish, when we heard a hissing in the starboard engine bay.

Upon inspection, all the fresh water we had left (about 170 liters) from the tanks had emptied into the engine bildge via a burst in the fresh water wash off hose. The hose is less than two years old.

Couple of thoughts....
1. We do have automatic bildges in the engine bay, they were shut off. Ooops. But... had they been on, the water would have been pumped out, and we would not have know.

2. If there was some kind of bildge alarm that comes on when the bildge goes on, we would have been notified of the problem sooner and could have fixed the problem and not lost all our water.

3. We normally carry 20 liters in a water container for back up purposes, but hubby had put that 20 liters in the tank thinking we were only a few days away from port. Good idea to hang on to it til the bitter end.

Has anyone replaced this wash off hose with something stronger that would be reinforced. I have found a few but they all seem to short.
Also has anyone put in any bildge lights or alarms? Hopefully this will never happen again. It's a weird feeling to be "completely out" of water.
We were able to catch about 10 liters of rainwater that last day from our rainwater catchment built into the cap. We can drink the rainwater here in Australia.
Rozzie
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Old 25-11-2011, 13:51   #63
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Hi Rozzie

I have had a hose problems that were caused by the hose falling against the engine when it is pushed back into the socket after use. It rubs agains the alternator drive belt and wears through. Unlikely to just burst.

The the hose kits in Aus seem to vary in length. You may do better in a bathroom shop?

Cheers
Martin
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Old 25-11-2011, 18:40   #64
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

It definately was a burst because it was about 1 inch from the sprayer handle, nothing for it to rub on. It blew out and left a rupture. Perhaps because we have the water pressure on all the time, because we live onboard, it's not designed for that kind of use.
I will definately be putting in something stronger. It's not to much fun to loose all your water.

Rozzie
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Old 26-11-2011, 04:59   #65
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Rozzie,

We never leave our wash down hose under pressure.
We have an on/off, hot/cold valve right next to the hose that we make sure is always off and the hose is depressurizes when we are done using it.

Mark
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Old 26-11-2011, 13:49   #66
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Mark
Is that the valve (on/off) that is in the engine bay you are refering to? So after you use it (and to turn it on) you have to open the engine bay cover and reach in and turn it off? Or did you make some modification that you can turn it off elsewhere?

I know that kind of procedure is not going to work for us. We use this hose several times a day, and Im the only one that would remember to turn it off.
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Old 26-11-2011, 15:32   #67
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Rozzie,

We have an on/off, hot/cold valve right next to the hose.

Mark
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Old 26-11-2011, 16:24   #68
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Thanks Mark,
That makes sense now that I can see the photo. Looks like an excellent set up and I would love to have warm water at that access as well! Nice!

Rozzie
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Old 14-08-2012, 10:17   #69
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Heads black water hoses

Hi all,
I recently replaced the big waste hoses of the heads. Reason was that I had the impression that build-up inside the hoses was constricting the flow.
While the hoses were not as plugged-up as I thought, the outlet side of the holding tank was almost plugged up completely.
For another reason replacement was very useful: the heads and even the saloon became notably less smelly. (the smell of the original, more permeable hoses could sometimes reach the saloon via the anchor hatch; this is all open....).
Also, the risk of the system plugging up by accidental toilet paper in the toilet becomes less.

Including cleaning the job took me around 5-6 hours, working carefully.

Required: big cork to fit into the 38 mm hose; 3.1 meters of anti-smell hose; at least one surgical glove; tools; vaseline; white silicone caulking; noseplugs.

We have the Mahe version with a black water holding tank.
The hoses are 38 mm internal and 50 mm external; probably equivalent to 1.5" and 2". Original production hoses were standard hose, I think; the text in the hoses says "waste", but you could smell things straight through the plastic that you don't want to smell.
See the picture of the original hose from toilet to inlet side of holding tank.
In shops in La Rochelle, where we visited, I found standard hose for 13 euro/meter, and anti-odeur (anti-smell) hose for 25 euro/meter. Obviously I purchased the latter.

The job itself is a bit smelly and messy. Not bad to use latex or surgical gloves.

First you have to remove the fiberglass cover around the holding tank, 6 crosshead screws.
Then insert a water hose in the deck outlet of the holding tank. Fill the holding tank with water, with the through-hull valve closed; when the holding tank overflows, open the valve; look out of the window. Continue this process until the water from the holding tank becomes clean; this might take 10 times....
Next step: pump a lot of clear water, preferably from the boat's sweet water, through the toilet. Then pump lot of air through, to remove as much water from the long hose (going to the holding tank) as you can.
I then removed the hose between holding tank and through-hull valve. First on the top side, below the holding tank. When you remove the hose at this side, immediately put a dispensable container (eg from a Chinese restaurant) below the holding tank outlet.

I then removed the hose between toilet and holding tank.
First disconnect this hose at the top (holding tank) side.
Next you undo this hose at the toilet side. You need to remove the toilet outlet elbow and the anti-flowback valve of the toilet for this. Keep the silicone caulking around the hose intact till now.
Unavoidably the contents of this hose will run into the bathroom, (unless you do something clever with hoses, and use a pump from the holding tank side, to empty the hose).
After drying around the toilet base, you can cut the silicone caulking around the hose, pull the hose a bit upwards behind the toilet, and put a big cork in it. The avoids the not-so-clean contents from running between hull and heads inner shell, where it is hard to clean. Then remove this hose with the cork in it.
It was 2 meters exactly, but it is better to replace it with 2.1 or 2.2 meters. This makes re-mounting at the rear of the toilet easier, with less stress (= change of leaking) on the toilet outlet elbow.
I then cleaned the outlet of the holding tank, and the inlet of the through-hull valve, using my fingers in a surgical glove. This was quite useful, the biggest constrictions were here, especially the outlet of the holding tank.
Then install the new long hose.
Then install the new short hose. This hose is just under one meter, so best is to purchase a length of 1 meter and once in place cut it to exact length.
Apply silicone caulking between the long hose and the heads inner shell after cleaning the glued area well with acetone or alcohol.

As standard maintenance, re-apply vaseline on the cylinder and piston of the toilet pump.
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Old 19-06-2013, 15:56   #70
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater...swap 220V to 110V t'stat?

All: We recently sailed our 2008 Mahe from Tortola to NH. It has no shore power wiring; I intend to install 120V wiring. Problem: The Sigmar water heater has a 220V element with the (non removeable - Reco branded) t'stat mounted on top of that element. I'd like to replace it with a 110V element (if available) rather than replacing the water heater but had no luck sourcing one. Suggestions? Regards, Bob
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Old 19-06-2013, 16:05   #71
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Quick USA carries all the Sigmar water hearter parts.
They had the 110V element when I needed one.

Plumbing and Water Heater
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Old 20-06-2013, 04:44   #72
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220V water heater

There are some other options.
First is just to use the 220 V or 230 V water heater element on your 110 or 120. The power will drop from around 800 Watts to around 200 Watts; as a consequence it takes 4 times as long before you have hot water. Well, with our own use (not wanting to wash the dishes immediately after a long shower, just 2 people aboard) this would not be a problem.
Advantage: Zero cost.

Second option:
If you have no shore power, you might have, or consider, solar panels.
For those in the USA who have a 110 V water heater element:
These elements are 110 V 800 Watt. If you connect this to the around 50-60 V DC (as comes from panels with 72 or 96 solar cells), the water heater element will take around 200 Watts which is a nice power to take from a solar panel.
So you would need to install a double (6-pin) switch, and connect the 110 V heater element straight to the solar panel output. (could be to one of the two solar panels)

Third option: if you have no shore power but have solar power:
Keep the 220V heater element. Power it with a (300 Watt or more) 120V inverter supplied by the 12V. This will take some 220 Watts, close to 20 Ampere, from your 12V system. When it is sunny the solar installation should cover this.

I have the following system:
220V element powered by 220V shore power, when in a marina.
220 V element powered by a 110V 500 Watt inverter. We use this when anchored or sailing, and have full sunshine on the panels. I use this manually; I only switch it on when there are few clouds. In the morning the solar system will fill the batteries drained by the previous night; in the afternoon there is spare solar power to power the inverter to power the heater element. But it takes a long time.
If somebody wants, I can give a description of the way I have solved this using the Fountaine Pajot shore power box. It requires buying a European circuit breaker.....
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Old 21-06-2013, 11:28   #73
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Excellent, all, thanks. Cotemar, do I need a part number for the t'stat or model number of the Sigmar WH to order a 110V t'stat or will quick know when I call? I don't know where either is located.
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Old 21-06-2013, 11:46   #74
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Sigmar Water Heater

This should give you all the info you need for the Sigmar water heater.
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Old 28-04-2014, 14:02   #75
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Re: Plumbing and Water Heater

Problem:No hot water

What worked for us:
1. Removing the tank as per Cotemar's great post
- I ended up taking the radiator hoses off the engine block vs off the tank.
- The tank drains much faster when one hot / cold inlet are off and flip to pressure release valve on the hot water.
2. Remove the heating element. The only tool that worked was this one at homedepot - 
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. We also needed a 4ft steel tube for leverage!
3. Cleaned the heating element and thermostat connections with vinegar.
4. Our element is 220 and should read 60 ohms of resistance and did.
5. The thermostat should show continuity - or any resistance when it's cold. It should read 0 continuity / resistance when it's hot. The thermostat works by not letting electricity flow when it reached the dialed in temp.

As a side note - we are using our 220v heating element on 120v. It's as simple as replacing the receptacle. The water will take much longer to heat, but it works and it's safe.

Wrench used to remove element.

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Calcium buildup on thermostat - probably from leaking pressure release.
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Heating element testing out ok at 60 Ohms (220v) 120v will be be much lower.
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Heating element below thermostat:
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Thermostat:
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Added teflon sealant to every metal to metal water connection.
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