What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

What's on your mind? Anything generic goes here.

Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby mrrlc on Fri Jul 07, 2017 2:11 pm

The Garnet Tank SeeLevel systems look like a good solution for monitoring water, fuel, and holding tank levels. The sensor strips are attached to the outside of the tanks. I've never used them but they look promising from the web site and brochure.

https://www.garnetinstruments.com/wp-co ... ebsite.pdf

Bob
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby Todd on Fri Jul 07, 2017 2:45 pm

I know I said this before but go on you tube and type in Tank Tender. There is an install video that shows how easy it is. No electronics, no large cut out in tank for floats. I put the gage in the electronics cabinet behind the helm on my 29 and a simple tubing run to tank. Never have to worry again.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby Irish Mist on Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:08 pm

Todd
This looks like a great solution.... I watched the video.... looks easy.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby baz on Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:15 pm

baz wrote:One other thought that may take a bit more work and create a challenge for some....

The new 2018 R-27's electric flush is a new model (Brand Raritan) used by Ranger Tugs. It has an integral pump for drawing in water for flushing.

If the specs for this pump are known, and let's say it states 1 gallon per minute, then it should be relatively easy to keep track of how much water has been pumped.

If the button is held in for 30 secs then 1/2 gallon would be pumped. Thus after 60 such flushes the 30 gallon holding tank would be filled.

Going a step further a simple circuit board could be developed/made that would sense the amount of time the button had been held down and based on the pumps gallons/min number compute the gallons pumped and display this or simply use a LED level indicator display to reveal the level of the holding tank's contents.


OK... I'm pretty sure the Raritan toilet/head used on the new 2018 R-27 is this one - SeaEra Electric Macerating Toilet SKU: 160MI012FM with an online price of $760 - It has a minimum water use of 1 quart or 1/8 gallon or 1 liter. N.B. This has been confirmed by Andrew.
http://raritaneng.com/raritan-product-line/finished-goods/seaera-et/

This head does have an integral pump and using 12v will require a breaker fuse size of 25 amps and can draw as much as 18 amps. The Manual states minimum flow rate is 3 gpm (11.3 liters).

Thus, for a 5 sec flush a minimum of 0.25 gallons would be used. With this 5 sec flush duration the 30 gallon holding tank would fill after some 120 flushes.

Thus, assuming one person attends the call of nature per 2 hrs and uses the 5 sec flush method the passage of time before the holding tank becomes full would be 240 hrs.

So we could graph this as....

1 person on board then pump holding tank every 240 engine hrs
2 persons on board then pump holding tank every 120 engine hrs
3 persons on board then pump holding tank every 60 engine hrs
....and so on.

Assuming the 5 sec flush method is acceptable and not using more than 100 engine hrs per year with an average of 3 persons on board I would want to pump the holding tank at least twice per year or more frequently and would do so when refueling just to make sure.

So now, how to note down the number of flushes... ?

Posted HEAD NOTE
Record Date and Number of Flushes on Provided Head Log

:lol: :lol: :lol:
Last edited by baz on Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:21 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby baz on Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:42 pm

baz wrote:...snip...
3) On the new 2018 R-27 there's absolutely no way for viewing the holding tank without some major modification. I've discussed this issue with Andrew and at this time there's no solution for it during my R-27s assembly. :(

Andrew's thoughts were; 1) some form of flow meter in the line running to the holding tank that can accumulate data on how many gallons have passed by and for this to be reported/displayed somewhere and 2) open up some space above the step at the V-berth entrance such that the holding tank's level could be seen via shining a flashlight at the tank. The ...snip...


The riser above the V-berth entrance step is some 6 to 8 inches. Thus there's enough space to install a round or rectangular holding tank viewing hatch. The issue will be; can the holding tanks level be easily observed over time as over time the tank's inside surface can become darkened.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby baz on Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:37 pm

OK.... Here's my final solution :o to this issue for avoiding the holding tank overfilling.... and after discussing with Andrew it should be a good solution. After installing it I will post back here on how well it works and solves the issue.

I'm going to install the Fill-Rite TT10ANC In-Line Digital Turbine Meter, 1" Female NPT Thread, 1" ID, Nickel-Plated Aluminum (see Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Fill-Rite-TT10AN ... flow+meter.)

This device can be configured to display various measurements such as liters, ounces, pints, quarts and gallons with an accuracy of +– 1%. It does require 2x AA replaceable batteries.

So long as no one manually pours water into the bowl the flow meter will give me a precise number of gallons pushed in/out to the 30 gallon holding tank. :)

It costs $158.61 with free S&H and will work perfectly for me as I've had this confirmed by Andrew. I will order today and have it on my doorstep come July 12.

After installing I will post a review of how well it works for me to solve the issue for avoiding the new 2018 R-27's holding tank from over filling.

I really think this is best solution at this time.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby Todd on Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:45 pm

The flow meter looks like a nice solution, I have several of these meters that I use for work related flow measuring. The problem is on my 29 I didn't have a place to install one that was easy to see. A meter with a remote reading head would have worked, such as a Blue White meter, but are considerly more expensive and would have been more trouble to install. I just went with the Tank Tender.

You would think someone could make a sensor that would work reliably through the plastic tanks on our boats.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby baz on Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:48 pm

Darn Amazon.... by the time I decided to click buy the price for the Fill-Rite flow meter went from $158.61 to $221.16..... bugger... this is what happens when one delays and procrastinates... ;)

The Ranger Tugs (RT) Raritan SeaEra toilet is installed with the optional sea water strainer to keep out unwanted cruddy stuff sucked in through the hull grate. So this means the flow meter will need to be installed between the strainer and the toilet to protect the flow meter from having crud pass though it.

The flow meter will need to be visible and its 2x replaceable AA battery access will be required.

Hopefully, RT allows the Raritan SeaEra's optional sea water strainer to be user accessible as well as the strainer will need occasional cleaning.

Must remember to always either reset the flow meter's display and/or record its reading each time the holding tank is pumped out. I will also assume the holding tank can never be completely emptied when pumping out so will perform pump out after say a max of 25 to 27 gallons have been recorded by the flow meter.

IMO...This is going to be a useful addition for avoiding the holding tank from overflowing and creating a messy situation as well as avoiding breaking the US laws. :)
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby baz on Sat Jul 08, 2017 10:31 am

Todd wrote:The flow meter looks like a nice solution, I have several of these meters that I use for work related flow measuring. The problem is on my 29 I didn't have a place to install one that was easy to see. A meter with a remote reading head would have worked, such as a Blue White meter, but are considerly more expensive and would have been more trouble to install. I just went with the Tank Tender.

You would think someone could make a sensor that would work reliably through the plastic tanks on our boats.


I'm presuming placing a sensor inside the holding tank to capture liquid level is fraught with issues. This has to be the reason why RT does not provide any gauge like they do for the fresh water tank. For house sceptic tank arrangements when the main tank fills the gray water passes through a removable strainer and then goes into a pump out tank and in that tank there's a level sensor such that when liquid reaches a certain level a pump motor starts to pump out the gray water to the leach field. If on a boat such a system were to be employed the overflow tank could have a simple water sensor that triggers an alarm notifying the Captain the holding tank is full, and the head is no longer to be used.

I'm hopeful the Fill-Rite flow meter will be a useful addition for me for knowing when to pump out the holding tank. If it proves a reliable method then maybe RT can adopt it for future builds. RT should be able to procure the Fill-Rite flow sensors for a good price, plus it's an easy installation to do as the boat is put together in the factory. It will also give RT owners some peace of mind I would think. I simply cannot think of a worse situation to having the holding tank overflow inside the boat.

My assumption here is... what goes in has to go out, and the flow meter for measuring what goes in should be an excellent method for monitoring this.
Barry, (1st mate Gill passed away Aug 11, 2018) & Jake (Wire Hair Fox Terrier)
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby JamesTXSD on Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:57 pm

On our boat and RV heads, there has always been more than "water" that goes into the holding tank. An issue with the holding tank monitors on boats is... um, slosh: stuff in the tank gets moved as the boat pitches or yaws.

Using the fresh water tank to determine how much you are putting into the waste holding tank is fine... as long as you don't wash your hands, wash dishes, shower, etc, etc. We have always sanitized the fresh water tank in our boats and RVs, and filter drinking water, but otherwise use it like you use your plumbing at home.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby baz on Sat Jul 08, 2017 2:24 pm

When I plumbed fresh water to my DIY installed Tecmar ECO electric flush toilet on my R-25 (Classic) I ensured no back flow would occur using a one-way valve. The factory installs the Raritan SeaEra electric flush toilet in the new 2018 R-27 and it can be plumbed to use sea water or fresh water and has a built-in back flow valve to ensure there's no flow back into the fresh water system.

One of the interesting Raritan SeaEra statements made in its User Manual is "No special toilet paper is required". I assume this means the macerator will handle normal household TP, but still wonder about using that for the boat's holding tank's capability of breaking down the thicker paper pieces. I will be periodically using the Odorlos powder (Yara North America, Inc, the importer and seller of Odorlos, and for more info on Odorlos see - Jenna.engel@yara.com. Jenna Engel Sales Manager. Odorlos Industrial Industrial Nitrates Office: +1 813-222-3847 ) for the holding tank treatment. Of course the normal advice for the sanitary system is ... Avoid bleach, pine oil cleaners, Lysol and household chemical bowl cleaners...and do the regular preventive maintenance required to replace worn seals, gaskets and valves BEFORE they wear completely out and fail.

For us, we refuse to drink the boat's fresh water for many reasons previously mentioned and discussed a year or so back here in this forum. Each to there own... so to speak. We do however use the fresh water for shower, washing dishes with the hot water, but never for drinking or cooking. We carry/stow enough bottled water for our needs.

On our new R-27 I elected to have the cockpit Refrigerator mainly to hold extra water bottles and soft drinks and to keep them cool. This frees up the main cabin Refrigerator for food items that need refrigeration to avoid spoiling.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby walldog on Sat Jul 08, 2017 2:37 pm

baz wrote:
If the specs for this pump are known, and let's say it states 1 gallon per minute, then it should be relatively easy to keep track of how much water has been pumped.

If the button is held in for 30 secs then 1/2 gallon would be pumped. Thus after 60 such flushes the 30 gallon holding tank would be filled.

Going a step further a simple circuit board could be developed/made that would sense the amount of time the button had been held down and based on the pumps gallons/min number compute the gallons pumped and display this or simply use a LED level indicator display to reveal the level of the holding tank's contents.


Started not to even read this thread but I sure would have missed an interesting discussion. First of all Slackwater Jack wins the prize for best retort.

Barry, you have neglected to figure out how to measure output of bodily fluids. You could use a measuring cup for #1 but how do you measure #2?

In my motorhome with a similar size holding tank, 7 days we dump black tank. In our R27 and our R31 7 days again works for the two of us. If you are worried put it on a 4 or 5 day schedule and forget about it. Do not try expensive untried methods that detract from boating pleasure by keeping a log.....really? And in practice never pass up a chance to pump out especially after more than a couple of days use.

And do not forget to add at least 2-3 gallons of water after each pump out to allow the water to slosh around when you hit those 4 foot wind waves. That will loosen any stuck solids that tend to collect in the corners of the tank.
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby walldog on Sat Jul 08, 2017 2:40 pm

SlackwaterJack wrote:The deck gets really, really slippery?

:D
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby 502mad on Sat Jul 08, 2017 2:47 pm

KISS principle is often best!
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Re: What's noticed when holding tank becomes full ?

Postby baz on Sat Jul 08, 2017 2:54 pm

Herb:

Hmmmm, still lurking here.... :) Nice for you to poop (sorry, meant pop :lol: ) in here. Thanks. :) ...Oh.. and how's your 14-foot-itis proceeding ?

    My head log was a jest at best.
    Yes, the human stuff added to the bowl (bodily fluids as you say) has to be taken care of and the Fill-Rite flow sensor will not capture that portion sent to the holding tank. That is why pump out will be done at or below the 25 gallon mark. That should deal with the "bodily fluids". :lol:
    Boating pleasure is increased/enhanced when there are no mishaps onboard.
    Having two known people onboard as you've mentioned makes the issue trivial .... but when there are more, the issue becomes more complex and one that needs some attention.
    Agree on taking the pump-out opportunity whenever possible.
    Yes, adding some fresh water back flow after a pump out has been my practice also. I also make sure I don't use the fuel dock's same fresh water hose to top up our fresh water tank. Horrors... :o
    I'm certain my Fill-Rite flow meter will be an excellent modification for providing pleasurable boating. :D

BTW... I love chatting with my English speaking (and English born) Gastroenterologist and the way she pronounces "poop" without any trace of a smile. :lol:
Barry, (1st mate Gill passed away Aug 11, 2018) & Jake (Wire Hair Fox Terrier)
SOLD - 2010 R-25 LAXEY
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Trade in R-27/OB, LAXEY, Hull Midnight Blue
2019 R29 S Hero Red to be delivered Mar 2019
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