Catalina 34

General Activities => Main Message Board => Topic started by: Jeff Kaplan on June 14, 2017, 02:17:41 PM

Title: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jeff Kaplan on June 14, 2017, 02:17:41 PM
Last year, towards the end of our short season, I found it was hard to pump the head, manual Jabsco.  The head needed replacing so I bought a new manual Jabsco.  Just launched the boat and when I started to prime and pump the new head, found same problem.  Water is drawn in very easy but when handle pushed down, feel pressure resistance.  I can only think that the diverter valve, into holding tank or out to sea, is somehow defective. I don't think it could be the vented loop as water just goes thru it.  The thru hull is clear.  If anyone can shed some light on this matter, I would greatly appreciate it.  I need to get this fixed shortly, as the Tall Ships are parading intro Boston Harbor on Saturday and I have a crew to go and view.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Noah on June 14, 2017, 02:53:51 PM
Troubleshoot it in stages, a piece at a time, to isolate problem. 1. Disconnect the discharge hose from the diverter valve, stick it in a bucket or on towels, pump head, and see if it discharges from the hose. Then move down the line.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Stu Jackson on June 14, 2017, 04:53:23 PM
Also check the vent from the tank.

There are a number of head issues discussed in the 101 Topics that are worth a look.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Noah on June 14, 2017, 05:28:31 PM
If your holding tank is full or close to it, a clogged vent will definately cause hard pumping. Your tank may swell as well.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jeff Kaplan on June 14, 2017, 06:26:42 PM
holding tank is empty, vents clear.  I'm still thinking that it's the diverter valve, rubber shifted to close off some of the waterway, I'll be back on boat tomorrow to  test the advice given.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Ed Shankle on June 15, 2017, 07:18:01 AM
Jeff,
Sorry I don't have a definitive answer for you, but want to say that I had that same issue with my Jabsco and I don't have a diverter, always goes into the holding tank. I never solved it, just replaced it with a PHII, which I like much better. With the Jabsco I found that if I held some down pressure on the pump handle, after a few seconds it would eventually release the resistance and I'd be able to pump ok. Might work for you in a pinch until you get to the root cause.

regards,
Ed
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Bobg on June 15, 2017, 08:15:38 AM
I had a similar problem and it wound up being the valves on top of the handle area, those little brass round things, one side would open and the other would not when put in dry bowl.  I bought the entire plunger system, helped for awhile, now when I flush, air and "liquid" sometimes shoots back out of the bowl "ugh", or when I operate the plunger and hold it down, I get a big "sigh" sound.  I have done just about everything I can think of, (new joker valves, plunger, valves, checked all hoses, vent was momentarily taken off the tank to check that. soaked everything in vinegar, ect), I am in lake superior and the water is crystal clear, I think it is just that the jabsco is a really inferior toilet.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Stu Jackson on June 15, 2017, 11:33:03 AM
There is great merit in assigning the issue to the Jabsco mechanism.  Peggie has written repeatedly about this on other boating forums.  Why not here?  'Cuz we've repeatedly mentioned the advantages of the Raritan PHII assemblies and haven't had to repeat much about the Jabscos.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Noah on June 15, 2017, 12:26:03 PM
Jabscos are inexpensive and a bit flimsy, with lots of plastic parts that are easy to overtighten, causing leaks. However, I have never had any issues with them not pumping/clearing the bowl.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: mark_53 on June 15, 2017, 12:59:57 PM
Did someone put something they haven't first eaten into the head? 
Can you pump out with the through hull open and does is suck raw water?
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Ron Hill on June 15, 2017, 03:06:40 PM
All : I always wondered what the Chinese did to the type rubber used in the pump "O" ring they now supply.

25 years ago the pump slid up/down with ease.  Now it might need "head lube"!!

My solution is to take that "O" ring and soak it in silicone to make I more resilient.  It helps.

A few thoughts
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jeff Kaplan on June 16, 2017, 04:14:56 PM
I thank all for your replays. The situation has been resolved.  It turns out that years ago I installed an inline strainer in between seacock and head.. I took out the screen the year after, so just water would run thru.  Thru the years, the outlet munged up and caused pressure blockage as I was drawing in water.  The fix, I ran a new line from the seacock to head, and amazingly, no more problems. Going to see the Tall Ships tomorrow, weather is iffy. Thanks again
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: KWKloeber on June 19, 2017, 10:17:32 PM
I thank all for your replays. The situation has been resolved.  It turns out that years ago I installed an inline strainer in between seacock and head.. I took out the screen the year after, so just water would run thru.  Thru the years, the outlet munged up and caused pressure blockage as I was drawing in water.  The fix, I ran a new line from the seacock to head, and amazingly, no more problems. Going to see the Tall Ships tomorrow, weather is iffy. Thanks again

Jeff so the hard pump was on the intake stroke?  not the pump stroke?

ken
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jeff Kaplan on June 21, 2017, 06:11:12 AM
it was the pump stroke that was hard, all fixed now, I never should have installed an in line strainer.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: KWKloeber on June 21, 2017, 07:14:11 AM
it was the pump stroke that was hard, all fixed now, I never should have installed an in line strainer.

Strange, I don't see how a blockage on the inlet side would cause hard pumping on the pump stroke.  Seems it would cause a vacuum when pumping on the intake stroke.

k
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Dave Spencer on June 21, 2017, 10:36:36 AM
it was the pump stroke that was hard, all fixed now, I never should have installed an in line strainer.

Strange, I don't see how a blockage on the inlet side would cause hard pumping on the pump stroke.  Seems it would cause a vacuum when pumping on the intake stroke.

k

Jeff's answer makes sense to me Ken.  When pressing down on the pump handle, waste is being discharged from the pump to the tank on the piston side of the cylinder while fresh water is being drawn into the pump on the rod side of the cylinder.  Any restriction drawing in water like the clogged filter Jeff described would certainly cause a hard pumping head. 
The upward stroke (or intake stroke as you called it) pumps water from the rod side of the pump cylinder into the bowl while the piston side of the pump draws waste from the bowl into the pump.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: KWKloeber on June 21, 2017, 03:01:42 PM
Dave

My 30 has a Groco head w/HF series pump -  have no idea what you guys have. It's been many years since I had the pump apart to replace any guts, and the last time I simply replace the entire pump. But as far as I remember there is no water on the rod side of the plunger.

The intake stroke and outlet stroke to the bowl is controlled by basically check valve.   The seal at the top of the pump for the rod is basically just a tiny seal that would not hold any pressure, it's just meant to not let any blowby out. By blowby I mean blowby past the main cylinder plunger seal.

IIRC (it's been many years and CRS) that seal on the plunger is like a leather cup seal on an old hand well pump, that is, a cup meant to seal  primarily against pressure on one side (water in the cylinder on the underneath side the seal in our case.)

As  far as I can remember the pump is single action, not double action. i e., on one stroke water fills the cylinder below the main seal, on the next down stroke it pushes that water out to the bowl. Or if the lever is flipped, the upstroke pulls poopie from the bowl to the cylinder, and the down stroke pushes it out to the tank through the joker valve.

Am I miscorrectly misremembering the guts of the pump, or are your guys' pumps different?  i.e. double-action plungers?
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Dave Spencer on June 21, 2017, 03:42:12 PM
Jabscos are double acting. Sadly, I've had mine apart several times.  Good video explanation here:

https://youtu.be/BnQq4d-NmkE (https://youtu.be/BnQq4d-NmkE)
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: KWKloeber on June 21, 2017, 04:46:52 PM
Jabscos are double acting. Sadly, I've had mine apart several times.  Good video explanation here:

https://youtu.be/BnQq4d-NmkE (https://youtu.be/BnQq4d-NmkE)

Well, there yah go.  Another day, another "learn something new."

Thanks Dave!
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jeff Kaplan on June 22, 2017, 11:27:43 AM
Guys, what I found out was in the Jabsco, that on the pull up, the waste was being removed, the down stroke brought in sea water. As the strainer was on the down push, that's where the pressure was. As stated, removal of the inline solved the problem, pumping like a champ now.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Pgutierrez on June 23, 2017, 03:29:29 PM
Ahh, da crapper!!!
A few suggestions to all:
Every 2-3 years replace the guts (moving parts) of the pump interior cylinder (comes in a nice packet with spring, gaskets, etc).  Make sure the spring is in the right place, gaskets lined up exactly where they need to be, DON'T over tighten the screws holding cylinder camp.  Otherwise you will say "0h Crap"
Also dump 1/4 vegetable oil into the toilet and DON'T pump out in one cycle.  Pump 2X or 3X, have a beer or two, repeat 2-3 more times.  Might lubricate the pump cylinder.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Geoffreykwright on July 04, 2017, 08:59:03 AM
This has happened to me.  My holding tank vent is on a stanchion on the port side.  The vent gets blocked from time to time by spider webs.  I've found a small bottle brush works well followed by a splash of Bug-Tek.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: KWKloeber on July 05, 2017, 09:12:05 AM
This has happened to me.  My holding tank vent is on a stanchion on the port side.  The vent gets blocked from time to time by spider webs.  I've found a small bottle brush works well followed by a splash of Bug-Tek.

Good point on cleaning out speeders and other critters.
 
All, understand that (black water and potable water tank) vents are a "tube within a tube", that extends up inside the stanchion, to just below the lower life line.  The hole at the stanchion base may be open, while the vent tube inside can remain blocked.
In worst case, putting a LITTLE garden hose pressure/flow thru the vent line will back flush the stanchion and clean out the inside tube.

kk
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: WindyT on August 22, 2017, 04:11:20 PM
Hey folks,

Same deal, hard pumping head.  Have guaranteed the black water tank is evacuated both by macerator and pumping it out.  I'm afraid it is a blockage problem - either pipes or tank vent.  About to roll up the sleeves and confirm... that said, I swear to god that I cannot find the tank vent in the stanchion!  I believe it should be directly at base the midship stanchion.  Is there a C34 secret handshake I didn't receive upon purchase of vessel?  Would appreciate a tip


T
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Dave Spencer on August 22, 2017, 06:02:29 PM
Windy,
Here's a pic of my stanchion. Note that I'm holding I upside down in the picture to show the bent plate. It's right above the nav station. You might be able to trace the vent hose by removing the teak facing at the aft outboard cabinet with the sliding doors.

http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,7327.msg49862.html#msg49862 (http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,7327.msg49862.html#msg49862)
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: WindyT on August 22, 2017, 07:26:19 PM
Thanks for the pic!
Makes me think my stanchion has been replaced.  The starboard midship water tank has a similar vent that was quite easy to find.  I suppose I'll go hunting and will let you know what I find.

Regardless, I pumped the tank out and then simply removed the vent hose from the top and still had the same problem = it ain't the vent.  Going to cross my fingers its the pumping unit itself and not the tubing between the head and the tank.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jim Hardesty on August 23, 2017, 04:36:46 AM
Quote
Is there a C34 secret handshake

WindyT ,
There isn't a secret handshake.  But.  There is the signature you can add to your profile.  It helps the posters give better information.  Include things like homeport, hull number, year, model, engine, rig, keel etc.  Just look what others have added.
Jim
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Ron Hill on August 23, 2017, 01:30:10 PM
Windy : Instead of using "Head Lube" I found that spraying some silicone on the large "O" ring on the bottom of the pump handle helps the pump slide up/down inside the pump column -  much better.

A thought
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jim Hardesty on October 02, 2021, 09:31:48 AM
Quote
I had a similar problem and it wound up being the valves on top of the handle area, those little brass round things, one side would open and the other would not when put in dry bowl.  I bought the entire plunger system, helped for awhile, now when I flush, air and "liquid" sometimes shoots back out of the bowl "ugh", or when I operate the plunger and hold it down, I get a big "sigh" sound.

Exactly the same problem I'm having. With a pump replaced at the start of this season.  It goes away if some lube, vegetable oil, is pored into the bowl and pumped to the tank.  In the groups experience, will Jabsco help?  Who would be a good person to contact?
My original Jabsco worked well.

Jim
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Ron Hill on October 03, 2021, 01:18:26 PM
Jim : I complained about the hard pumping a number of years ago.  I also complained to Jabsco and accused them of changing the "rubber" composition of the large "O" ring that is at the bottom of the pump shaft.  They denied it, but I'm sure of it!!

My best fix is silicone grease (plumbers grease)  on that "O" ring.

A few thoughts
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: waughoo on October 03, 2021, 03:42:19 PM
I had that problem and decided to change to a raritan superflush residential bowl head.  MUCH better pumping action, larger bowl size and the super flush has the same mounting bolt layout so it was an easy change out.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: glennd3 on October 04, 2021, 05:11:51 PM
Looking to replace my Jabsco head. Can anyone tell me if the Household size is really noticeable over the compact size. Never really comfortable on the compact size I have. In fact hate the size.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jon W on October 04, 2021, 07:24:59 PM
Same here, might as well use a bucket  :shock:. I’m saving for the Raritan SuperFlush household size. Glad to hear from Alex it’s a better piece of equipment and the mounting bolts match the old Jabsco.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: waughoo on October 04, 2021, 09:35:54 PM
I too HATED the small size of the marine sized head.  The size of the household head is VERY noticable in use but fits VERY nicely in the space available.  The only modification I needed to make was in the hole in the bulkhead where the hose exits to the tank.  I had to oval out the hole a bit as the L fitting is a bit deeper than the 45° fitting on the jabsco.  The mounting holes of the superflush are an exact fit.  I bought mine from Marine Sanitation and the price was fantastic.  They are local to me in seattle, but their online store ships.  Do the swap.  You wont be dissappointed.

https://marinesan.com/raritan-superflush-p102-large-bowl-toilet/
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jon W on October 05, 2021, 06:59:28 AM
Good price! Did it come with the slow close toilet seat?
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: waughoo on October 05, 2021, 09:24:41 AM
Yes... slow close seat was included.  I can't say enough about how great this upgrade is.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jim Hardesty on October 05, 2021, 01:48:11 PM
I'm considering replacing the Jabsco with a new Raritan.  I was happy with the original Jabsco but not with the new twist n lock.  Has anyone with a MKll installed the full size bowl?  How did it work out?
Jim
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Ron Hill on October 05, 2021, 02:58:58 PM
Jim : It just occurred to me - go to an auto parts store and see if they might have a replacement "O" ring that is the same size as that large "O" ring at the bottom of the pump shaft.  Then cover it with plumbers grease (silicone based) and see if that doesn't make it easier to pump!!

An old time hardware store used to have "O" ring stock that you can cut and glue the ends - making your own "O" ring.  Another thought

A few thoughts
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Stu Jackson on October 05, 2021, 08:47:02 PM
Bowl sizes are usually posted on quality "toilet" (head) websites.  I'm sure Raritan has the dimensions.  Compare how much bigger they are than the "marine" size.  You'll no doubt find them not much larger and should fit easily.  Just compare that to the multiple photos of PHIIs installed in the 101 Topics head replacement posts.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jim Hardesty on October 06, 2021, 03:48:00 AM
Quote
  Then cover it with plumbers grease (silicone based) and see if that doesn't make it easier to pump!!

I did that every spring with the original and disassembled the new "twist n lock" found it to have been lubed at the factory.  The pump handle moves easily up but on the down stroke feels like a restriction to the water flow.  Putting some pressure on the handle holding it down can feel the water flowing slowly and a sighing sound.  Pumps harder pumping the usual ####.  I did email Jabsco with my problem, haven't received a reply yet. 
Shamrock is done for the season.  :cry4`  So will make decision to, repair original pump or maybe hear from Jabsco with a fix or replace with Raritan possibly with larger bowl.
Thanks to all for the good information.  Will get back if Jabsco responds.
Jim

Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Paulus on October 06, 2021, 06:33:41 AM
Jim, would appreciate your findings.  I have the same issue on the down stroke, but only occasionally.
Thanks,
Paul
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: KWKloeber on October 06, 2021, 07:07:58 AM
I don’t know
1) if this addresses the hard pumping issue or
2) if y’all have already tried this or
3) it applies to the model
But whenever I have a hard handle, I pump a couple ounces of mineral or baby oil thru the sink drain and 99-95/100% of the time it fixes it.  Just another idea that works for me.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jon W on October 06, 2021, 08:30:55 AM
FWIW - Next time when hard pushing down, check that the empty bowl lever has stayed all the way to the right. Mine sometimes drifts slightly back to the left when pumping. Can't tell it's moved by sight. Pushing the lever back to the right again solves the problem.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Roland Gendreau on October 07, 2021, 08:12:08 PM
I had this problem in the spring and silicone grease solved it.  Last winter , I had put about a half gallon of leftover pink antifreeze in the head.   I suspect the antifreeze impacted the O rings in the head pump  unit.  I won't do that again.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: glennd3 on October 08, 2021, 06:10:05 AM
 Maine Sailor explains the difference of the types of anti freeze. The cheap one is not good for seals. I did the same as you :cry4`



I had this problem in the spring and silicone grease solved it.  Last winter , I had put about a half gallon of leftover pink antifreeze in the head.   I suspect the antifreeze impacted the O rings in the head pump  unit.  I won't do that again.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Phil Spicer on October 08, 2021, 02:00:05 PM
Jon, thanks for the heads up on checking the empty bowl lever. We had the hard pumping problem. Checked the
lever today, problem solved! Lever was not all the way to the right. A little push to the right and all is well. Do not think the lever ever moved from vibration. Think our problem was a 5 year old grandson. He is all about exploring everything on the boat. Love it when he sails,he is as tall as the wheel so he needs a little help keeping a line. He is happiest calling out " Coming About." Really likes to turn. Straight line sailing ⛵️
isn't as much fun.
 Again, thank you Jon, saved me a lot of boat bucks.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jon W on October 08, 2021, 03:39:49 PM
Phil you’re very welcome, and glad it solved your problem.

Thanks to Alex, I just received my new Raritan Super Flush from Marine Sanitation and Supply. Next week’s project. I couldn’t pass on that price.

The willingness of so many, from so many different places, to share their experience and thoughts is why this forum is so great.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: waughoo on October 09, 2021, 12:36:44 PM
Jon,

Congrats on your new head!!  It was an easy afternoon project for me.  I used a dremmel sanding drum to enlarge the hole in the bulkhead to fit the slightly deeper head elbow.  Post a picture when you get it set up.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: Jon W on October 21, 2021, 01:53:43 PM
Alex, As requested, before and after photos.

The old hole pattern lined up like advertised, but the old head was too close to the FWD bulkhead for the new Raritan to fit so had to move it AFT 1"-1.25". That started a domino of changes. Done now and glad I did it.
Title: Re: Hard pumping head
Post by: waughoo on October 21, 2021, 07:12:35 PM
Thanks for posting. I was at my boat the other day using mine and wondered if you had gotten yours installed.  Sorry to hear it wasnt just a quick swap.  I mush have just been fortunate with where they mounted the Jabsco the day my boat was built.