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Old 13-05-2020, 11:09   #1
Dockhead's Avatar

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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Denmark (Winter), Helsinki (Summer); Cruising the Baltic Sea this year!
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 27,457
Johnson Ultima Float Switch

I have two gray water tanks originally built with flapper-type float valves to actuate the Whale Gulper 220 pumps which evacuate them.

I have always hated them -- especially the aft one which takes kitchen gray water so stinks like hell when I have to open it up.

One of the float valves failed in the stinky one last summer during my summer cruise. I replaced it with the only new one I could get my hands on (no spare) an el-cheapo from a chandlery in Tallinn. It failed in its own turn just 8 months later. Still no spare on board, so yet another el cheapo from the local chandlery . I don't expect it to last long.

Then last week the float valve in the forward gray water tank failed. This time I had time to look for a better device to replace it with, and allowed myself to get talked into a Johnson Ultima solid state one.

It was not a drop in fit but I managed to make it work and I'm reasonably pleased with how it is mounted. And it works like a champ so far.

NOW I want to lay in a spare for the aft one, for that inevitable day when the next failure occurs.

I use the Ultimate Junior float valves for my bilge pumps, but something like this would be overkill for gray water tanks and probably wouldn't fit.

So what do people think about the Johnson solid state ones? Should I be buying one of those to keep in spares for the aft tank?

The old flapper valves lasted a hella long time -- they were original to the boat, one failed at 17 years old and the other at 18 years, and that is not light usage. They were "Rule A Matic" ones, which I believe contained mecury, the absence of which due to regulation is no doubt why the modern ones are such crap.

So -- solid state? What experience do people have?
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
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