Cruisers Forum
 


Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on Cruisers Forums. Advertise Here
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 28-07-2020, 12:27   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Jamaica
Boat: Swan 40
Posts: 30
Manual Head vs electric

Hi,

We currently have a manual pump head and looking to change it to an electric. For us its fine as a family, its really if we have friends on the yacht, just easier for them.

Be good to hear some pros and cons for both before we make the final decision.

Look forward to the responses.
jamrocksailing is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 13:47   #2
Moderator
 
a64pilot's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Jacksonville/ out cruising
Boat: Island Packet 38
Posts: 31,312
Re: Manual Head vs electric

Manual is easier to repair, likely less expensive, doesn’t use electricity, people will argue that an electric head doesn’t use much, but not much adds up over time.
I ended up with a Raritan macerating head with the smart flush control, from a difficult to mess it up perspective the smart flush is the way to go, push a button and it runs it’s program
a64pilot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 13:50   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Rochester, NY
Boat: Chris Craft Catalina 381
Posts: 1,172
Re: Manual Head vs electric

A good manual head is simple, but the macerating electric units are even simpler. A basic pump to feed water in, and an impeller with a macerator blade on the front to pull things out and push it through the joker valve. Not a lot of complication or failure / clog points there.
rslifkin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 14:04   #4
It is only boating
 
sailorboy1's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: currently in Jacksonville Fl
Boat: Hunter 410
Posts: 16,927
Re: Manual Head vs electric

I replaced my basic manual Jabsco head 7 months ago with a fresh water Raritan elegance head (about $950). So far it has been great and maintenance free. My manual head was costing $200/year to maintain, which was as much as new one.

Pluses
-nicer more comfortable
-fresh water = less odor and scale
-can use regular TP, even the nice stuff and it just chews it up and flushes it away, even the flushable wipes
-easy to use

Minuses
-more $$ up front
-uses fresh water (I would say about 15 gal/wk for the 2 of us)
-uses power (if that is a problem you have other issues, but that is how I knew my batteries were dying)

7 months in and we feel it was a good upgrade
__________________
jobless, houseless, clueless, living on a boat and cruising around somewhere
sailorboy1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 14:14   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: NC
Boat: Dehler 36 (sold)
Posts: 70
Re: Manual Head vs electric

Stay away from freshwater electric head unless you have a water maker and want to save couple thousand dollars. Fresh water usage adds up specially when you have guests who have no idea and it's an another thing to draw on the batteries.
Doubleplay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 14:16   #6
Moderator
 
JPA Cate's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: aboard, cruising in Australia
Boat: Sayer 46' Solent rig sloop
Posts: 19,369
Re: Manual Head vs electric

I actually would stay manual, especially for guests. It is that guests are prone to want to flush oddments that boat owners know better than to flush. It is why some of us have the you plug it up, you un-plug it rule, and the nothing that hasn't been through your digestive and excretory systems, except toilet paper rule, too. I'm thinking that the more different the toilet is from a household facility, the better the guests will do with it, because its unfamiliarity will help them to be careful. Have fun writing your instructions for them, and post them very easy to see in the head.

Ann
__________________
Who scorns the calm has forgotten the storm.
JPA Cate is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 14:17   #7
It is only boating
 
sailorboy1's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: currently in Jacksonville Fl
Boat: Hunter 410
Posts: 16,927
Re: Manual Head vs electric

and here I just posted we use maybe 15 gal/wk with our freshwater head

in fact when we were in Bahamas were found that a 50 gal tank only lasted 6 days instead of the 7 days we used to get back in the manual head days

But you know what you do when you have a fresh water flush head and you get low on fresh water and need to conserve? You get a bucket of seawater and pour it into the bowl and flush it.
__________________
jobless, houseless, clueless, living on a boat and cruising around somewhere
sailorboy1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 14:20   #8
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Rochester, NY
Boat: Chris Craft Catalina 381
Posts: 1,172
Re: Manual Head vs electric

Ann has a good point on making people pay attention to what they put in there. However, the good electric heads are a lot more tolerant of what goes in them, being that it all gets chopped up. The rule of thumb I follow for mine is basically: it'll process anything that came out of a human plus however much toilet paper you needed afterward. Anything else goes in the trash. So far, I haven't found a human capable of clogging the thing (which could not be said for its manual predecessor).
rslifkin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 14:23   #9
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: New Zealand
Boat: 50í Bavaria
Posts: 1,774
Re: Manual Head vs electric

I replaced a manual jabsco with the jabsco quiet flush. Freshwater version. Would never go back. As well as being so much simpler in components it’s utterly different for guests or visitors. And remember that small children have no hope of using a manual system if you have those on board ever.

I was going to keep one manual head, but this one is so much more reliable and easier than the manual that I’ll be changing my master cabin head too.
Tillsbury is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 14:29   #10
Registered User
 
Chayal's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Vancouver
Boat: Samson C-shell 36
Posts: 93
Re: Manual Head vs electric

We have an electric head in our Columbia. It’s an Spx Johnson and it works quiet well. This has the built in macerator. The only thing we regret is not buying the bigger size.

I have a manual jabsco on our samson. We prefer the manual just because of the power consumption.

Personal preference. They’re both easy to service. It does seem like it’s easier to get parts for the manual jabsco though.

In the event of a power loss though... the manual one will still work.
Chayal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 15:51   #11
Registered User
 
flyingfin's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Cape Haze,FL
Boat: Carver,Cobia,Nacra, Columbia
Posts: 580
Re: Manual Head vs electric

Quote:
Originally Posted by rslifkin View Post
A good manual head is simple, but the macerating electric units are even simpler.
Hmmmm,.......... motors, electrical connections, switches, battery supplied power cables - all operating in a wet marine environment, and most buried in the bilge. Tell me again where the simpler stuff is?
flyingfin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 16:26   #12
Registered User
 
Lost Horizons's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Seattle, WA
Boat: Island Packet 349
Posts: 548
Re: Manual Head vs electric

Raritan Elegance is one of the best modern conveniences one can have on a boat. It is like going from an ice box to a refrigeration. I did not notice any power consumption increase vs a manual Jabsco on the previous boat, which is to be expected since the motor runs only about a minute or two a day, but the water use increase was noticeable (Jabsco was a raw water model). It has to be a watermakers’ manufacturers conspiracy.
Lost Horizons is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 16:27   #13
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Bay of Islands New Zealand
Boat: Morgan 44 CC
Posts: 723
Re: Manual Head vs electric

In all the years I have had a blocked manual toilet on the boat just once. That was when a guest ignored the instructions and used a wad of toilet paper comprising about ten squares and it couldnít pass through the skin fitting. Transferring the end of the pipe to a bucket in the bilge without much mess was quite easy.

Iíve also had an electric toilet (delivery boat) block for the same reason. The difference was that the macerator at the base of the toilet had to be stripped to clear the blockage resulting in the whole heads/shower floor being covered in a brown, foul-smelling coat. As nobody else on the boat was able to even approach the head, it was mine to fix and clean.

The boat owner told me afterwards that she had long before banned the use of toilet paper through the toilets due to continual blocking and insisted that paper be deposited in a small bin in the heads. I canít think of a process more unhygienic on a boat. Wonít allow it on my boat.

Iíll stick to my manual toilets.
CassidyNZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 16:36   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Ensenada
Boat: 1970 Willard 36 Trawler
Posts: 1,003
Re: Manual Head vs electric

I purchased a Groco Model K almost 25 years ago. If had hundreds of people on my boat for fireworks, day trips, etc. Every trip starts with a lesson, and usually one or two refresher during the day. I chose manual because I have one head on my boat.

The Groco K is more or less to the venerable WC Skipper. An expensive and lauded head.

I hate it. Tired of raw water. Tired of rebuilding it.

Go with the Elegance or a Tecma.

Peter
mvweebles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-07-2020, 16:38   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Bay of Islands New Zealand
Boat: Morgan 44 CC
Posts: 723
Re: Manual Head vs electric

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
My manual head was costing $200/year to maintain, which was as much as new one.
I routinely replace the O-rings every year (maybe $5) and maybe every 2 years I replace the joker valve ($20?). You must have been buying the Jabsco service kit every year?

Or maybe you don’t have Jabsco.
CassidyNZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
electric, head

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
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
Manual vs electric head? CamWrenRoo Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 114 14-07-2020 09:33
Jabsco Manual-->Electric Head amiller Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 10 11-02-2017 19:25
Electric flush head with manual option? ErBrown Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 15 26-06-2016 06:46
Electric Flush Mod to Manual Head zstine Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 12 19-12-2015 11:55
Electric or Manual Head? ssullivan Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 17 20-04-2008 19:22

Advertise Here


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 15:32.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.