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Old 22-06-2020, 12:49   #1
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Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

Looking for real life couple cruising stories of cruising with a 40E. Was it enough water for you? Did you basically just run it all day when the sun was up? Was it loud and annoying?

Seems there are a lot of threads of people selling their 40E. Was that because it just isn't enough water?
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Old 22-06-2020, 13:31   #2
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

We live very happily and comfortably on 30 to 50 liters of water a day for two people.

That includes showers and laundry.

If we switch to full on conservation mode, we can easily live on 10 liters a day with a bit less happiness and comfort.

A Katadyn 40E can make 9 liters an hour, more or less.

How much water do YOU need? Itís kind of like money... all you have...

For most RO systems the amount of water per Watt is about the same, so total energy usage is the same with a large unit as a small one. Most people pick larger units they can run for an hour or two from battery, then top off the batteries the rest for the day with solar. The units last longer run one hour a day not six. And itís a lot more convenient in operation to run the RO system while you eat breakfast, instead of having to be there all day to tend it and turn it off.

On the other hand you do not want on so big that you run it once a week. Thatís bad for them in other ways!
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Old 22-06-2020, 14:23   #3
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

When we purchased our boat it came with a Katadyn 40 water maker. It worked fine when we used it for drinking water and cooking water from time to time. We ran it around 2 hours a day. Access to water in the Mediterranean was reasonable however the quality was always suspect. So everything worked however when we crossed over to the Caribbean the water world changed. We had to run the WM a lot more and now it had to provide water for daily showers,dishes,cooking as well as drinking...and let's not kid ourselves, those little buggers are noisy and it's going to be running slot.
It wasn't long and I was in the market for a new Spectra, the little Kat 40 was always a push and I'd owned a Spectra years ago so I knew exactly what I was getting into.

If I was younger and could do salt water bathing with a freshwater rinse with a spray bottle like I did umpteen years ago and could convince my better half to do the same, use salt water for some cooking and dishes then absolutely go with the K40, it will do the job.

I think a much better choice, unfortunately at a premium price is a smaller Spectra which will deliver around 6 gallons or more per hour which will comfortably look after fresh water needs of a cruising couple. Another thing to keep in mind, our solar panels on a normal sunny day would top up the batteries around noon or thereabouts and right after the batteries were topped off I would fire up the watermaker as I had enough power to run the watermaker as well as the power to keep the batteries topped up PLUS now the batteries will be running at close to 14 volts which gives us about 3/4 of a gallon extra production on water making..win/win. By the way the Spectra is not super quiet so it's nice to get the noise over sooner than later. Either watermaker can do the job, depending on your personal habits and discipline...its also very good for the watermaker to be run daily, watermakers love to be used regularly. Good luck in your decision.
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Old 22-06-2020, 14:59   #4
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

No experience, but curious. If I get a WM, this is the one I'd currently choose. But my water needs are a lot less than most people report.
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Old 23-06-2020, 04:36   #5
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

I have a Spectra 150D and its all the things you mentioned. We don't have a generator, but run it off solar in the afternoon. However I think its very quiet, especially compared to the Katadyn.
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Old 23-06-2020, 05:59   #6
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

There's about a 2k difference between the 40E and the Ventura 150. If money is not the over driving concern you will be a lot better served with the Ventura 150. 6.5 gallons per hour is far better than 1.5 gallons per hour and the Ventura 150 makes the same gallon an hour twice as efficiently. The Ventura150 will make a gallon of water on 17 Watts were the 40e uses 32Watts to make the same gallon of water. If you are depending upon solar this makes even more sense.
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Old 23-06-2020, 09:58   #7
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

Real life liveaboard couple here using a 40E for the past 6 months.
We set up our 44ft powercat a couple years ago to be electrically independent on the hook & we never run a generator.
Our 1.4kW of solar panels with 880 Amp-hr house bank (AGM) powers all our loads (fridge, freezer, electric toilets, etc.) easily. We specifically wanted a small simple DC watermaker we could run often at low current draw. Weíre very happy with the 40E.
While offshore or in the clean waters of the Bahamas we have typically run the 40E every day making 10 - 15 USgal to keep our main freshwater tank topped off. Weíve been yielding an average of 1.6USgal/hr. Our PV system easily runs the 40E all day while the house bank remains fully charged. For sure the 40E isnít quiet, but itís not that bad and we hardly even notice the whirring sound of its motor anymore. When we do notice it, itís reassuring to know itís busy making freshwater using the sun!
If weíre not running the 40E for more than 3 days (for example, when weíre in a dirty or silty anchorage), pickling the 40E is easy & quick.
For us the 40E is the right fit.
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Old 23-06-2020, 13:08   #8
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

Assuming you need 10 to 15 gallons a day, you will have that Katadyn40E running 7 to 10 hours a day and it will be hard to catch up if you skip a day. There are problems that can occur while running it. I guess you can leave the boat with it running, but you could return to all kinds of big issues that would have been avoided if you were there when the failure happened. We have a Ventura 150 (pricey $5,500 ish) that runs about 2 hours a day, but we could run it every other day if we missed a day. We very rarely leave the boat while it is running. We also have problems running it heeled over on port tack because the through hull sucks air and causes an air lock in the pump. We can just skip a day of running if we are sailing south in the Caribbean, but with the Katadyn40, you would have a hard time making up for missing a day.


We have 530Watts of solar (2 'roof top' panels) & MPPT charger 450AmpHr L.A. bank, and run the watermaker, fridge, computers, etc no problem.
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Old 23-06-2020, 13:18   #9
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

Our current boat came with a Spectra 200T and we love it. But our last boat had a PowerSurvivor 40E installed ~2000. We lived aboard with it for 3 years, did Mexico, the SoPac, and Alaska. We used it to make about 4-5 gallons a day and that was plenty for the two of us. You won’t be standing under the shower (we can do that now with the 200T) but otherwise you can live quite well on the water it can make.

We didn’t find it any noisier than our Spectra. Not nearly as energy efficient, but otherwise the water quality was equal, maintenance about the same, etc.
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Old 23-06-2020, 13:21   #10
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

We like our daily showers and rinse offs every time we get out of the water
After the batteries are topped off each morning by about 10 o’clock we run our Seawaterpro Watermaker for 30 to 45 minutes to produce 10 to 15 gallons of water to fill our tanks. The unit uses 9 A at 120 V AC and our solar panels put out 60 A in bright sun so the battery draw is only 30 A while we’re making water
A real plus this is unit cost under $2000
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Old 23-06-2020, 14:29   #11
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

We had one for 2 years in Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean many years ago. It was fine for the dry season but we caught rain for most of our water because it was not something we wanted to do regularly. It was noisy so we usually ran it overnight since it was in the back of the boat and we slept in front. I would not do it now with all the better options but the two of us did not scrimp on showers but honestly we worked hard to catch water so we didnít have to mess with the water maker. We were young then and didnít care
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Old 23-06-2020, 14:54   #12
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadrille in JB View Post
After the batteries are topped off each morning by about 10 oíclock we run our Seawaterpro Watermaker for 30 to 45 minutes to produce 10 to 15 gallons of water to fill our tanks.
A real plus this is unit cost under $2000
well it is $3k now

but the thread isn't about cost or capacity

I mostly have now ruled out an 40E due to the noise. I am not willing to listen to it for 4-6 hours/day.
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Old 23-06-2020, 19:35   #13
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dsanduril View Post
Our current boat came with a Spectra 200T and we love it. But our last boat had a PowerSurvivor 40E installed ~2000. We lived aboard with it for 3 years, did Mexico, the SoPac, and Alaska. We used it to make about 4-5 gallons a day and that was plenty for the two of us. You wonít be standing under the shower (we can do that now with the 200T) but otherwise you can live quite well on the water it can make.

We didnít find it any noisier than our Spectra. Not nearly as energy efficient, but otherwise the water quality was equal, maintenance about the same, etc.

This is on par with our usage, which is why I'm interested in this WM. But I am also concerned with noise levels. If they really are quite noisy, I may choose something else.
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Old 24-06-2020, 11:56   #14
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

When you have a WM, you may use more. My wife and i use total of 10 gal per day. Showers, washing dishes, drinking water, rinsing after swimming. I even wash the deck down after rough crossings! Our Spectra 150D consistently puts out 7 gal per hour on 8 amps. So we run it for 3-4 hours in the afternoon to make 20-30 gal, then use 3 gal to flush. So we run it every 2-3 days. In sunny weather it is fully powered by the solar panels while the batteries sit unaffected. We used it for three months on our Seawind 1000 in the Bahamas in 2016, and then pickled it. Installed it on our Seawind 1160 Lite in 2019 and used it for four months in Bahamas, and now its pickled again. Performance was same each year. Itll be recommissioned in 2020 in Bahamas again, hopefully!
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Old 24-06-2020, 13:54   #15
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Re: Cruising with a Katadyn 40E

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When you have a WM, you may use more. My wife and i use total of 10 gal per day...
I agree. When tied to a dock where water is endless our usage tends to almost double. We go from 2 gallons/day to nearly 4. I've tracked our usage pattern over the last three cruising season using a flow meter, so I know quite accurately how much we use.

There are reasons why our usage (two adults, full time, 1/2 the year) is on the low side. I could elaborate, but that's not the point of this thread and I don't want to raise the ire of the OP.
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