Re: holding tank copper tube SM

amelliahona <no_reply@...>

7 July 2006

Mike: I am a little confused about where this blockage is. Is it in the
pipe that comes out the bottom of the holding tank to the through hull?
Is it in the hose that enters the top of the holding tank that comes from
the toilet? Is it in the stem pipe that runs from the deck pump out
fitting to the bottom of the holding tank? I couldn't make out from
you description which pipe was involved. Perhaps your holding tank
is different that my hull # 335 holding tank.

At any rate, I use white vinegar (weak acetic acid) to dissolve salt
deposits. I flush some vinegar through my toilets (letting it sit in the
bowl, valves etc for 5 to 10 minutes) about once a week. I do this
so that it can sit in an empty holding tank with the through hull
valve closed so that it can dissolve the salt on the valve. So far so
good. I was taught this trick by the Orange Coast College Offshore
Sailing program.

Sounds like your problem might take repetative treatments but i
will venture a guess that this will help.

Regards, Gary

--- In, "Mike Ondra" <mondra@...> wrote:

After losing our ability to pump out the toilet we discovered the
copper intake tube at the bottom of the holding tank was 3/4 blocked
by a hard crystaline substance deposited on the wall of the pipe.
This could be chipped away with a straight screw driver to the extent
that the screw driver could be leveraged up the pipe (maybe half way)
which seems to extend to near the top of the tank.

This boat has been in service 6 years, mostly in the Caribbean, with
sea water flush. Any ideas of what causes the buildup of such deposits
(combination of copper, salts, and ammonia from urine?)or experience
relative to its removal?

S/Y Aletes SM#240

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