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Author Topic: Holding Tank question by Jim Hamilton Missed in conversion  (Read 1432 times)

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Holding Tank question by Jim Hamilton Missed in conversion
« on: August 01, 2004, 09:06:56 AM »

<Jim Hamilton>

  posted July 04, 2004 05:37 PM  
It is possible to remove the holding tank? Has anyone done this? It appears that you have to remove the glassed in partion aft of the tank and then replace it.

We wish to remove the holding tank to give it a through cleaning, believing it does not empty when it is pumped out. Yes, this could be a very messy job, but we need to get rid of the smell and do not believe changing hoses will solve the entire problem.

Jim Hamilton
Sea Dream, #1053
C34 - 1990
Ron Hill
Registered User

  posted July 10, 2004 07:05 PM  
Jim : After changing out the large hoses from the head and the output of the holding tank, I'd definitely do as Randy suggests. The smallest white sanitary hose however is 5/8", so you'll need adapters for that vent hose.

I'd flush the tank with enzymes and baking soda - a couple of times. Remember don't put any toilet tissue into that holding tank. The tissue really never dissolves, floats and forms a barrier over time. We've always put used tissue (toilet paper) in a zip lock bag and dispose of it with the trash. A fresh water flush greatly helps - if you're in an situation that fresh water isn't a problem to resupply.

APACHE #788  

Posts: 1028 |  Registered: August 07, 2001  
Stu Jackson #224 1986 "Aquavite" SF Bay
Registered User

  posted July 07, 2004 10:00 PM  
Our hose doesn't have an anti siphon fitting in it. And it's even shorter. It goes forward from the base of the head (outlet's on the right side fo the base when facing the head looking to (and through!the) port, thus, forward), through the bulkhead, lowest part of the (for us, now shelves and former) hanging locker, under the nav station footrest and to the holding tank.

John, betcha it's even shorter than yours.

But for the way you started out, that's a great improvement.

Again, no anti siphon, but we keep the thru hulls closed.

Guess us older boats were built when the good old safety devices hadn't been invented yet.

Posts: 870 |  Registered: April 16, 2001  
John Langford, "Calypso", #1431
Registered User

  posted July 07, 2004 09:33 PM  
On my boat (#1431) the waste hose went aft from the base of the toilet pump, through the liner and then circled up behind the toilet paper dispenser door and then went past the hanging locker and down to the holding tank. I greatly shortened that long hose run by drilling a hole in the liner above and directly behind the toilet pump and leading the hose straight up and then across the back of the hanging locker. I cut the hose run down to 5' which means I pump less water and get the job done sooner.

I still want to replace the hose which I think is a bit polluted but at $8 per foot my new route will pay dividends.

Posts: 46 |  Registered: November 03, 2003  
<Mike Z.>

  posted July 06, 2004 07:06 PM  
Hi Jim,

I just replaced my tank and all of the hoses including the vent hose. As you see from the other replies, buy the best waste hose you can find. I used a heat gun on low to get the pipe flexable. My boat is a 1989 and I had to remove the aft wood holding the tank in place. After I installed the new tank I used west system epoxy to replace the wood. So far everything is working fine. This is my second boat that I have changed everything, and is has stop all odors inside the boats.

I bought the new tank from Catalina they had a much better price than the tank manufacturer, and they shipped it to my front door.

Mike Z.
Registered User

  posted July 06, 2004 12:24 PM  
I'll put my two cents in also...... Never put salt water in your holding tank, I fill the toilet bowl with the shower wand. there are some more sophisticated ways to put fresh water in the head on this web site........PAUL
Posts: 63 |  Registered: May 04, 2002  
Randy Davison "Gorbash" #1268 1994
Registered User

  posted July 06, 2004 11:39 AM  
My two bits - after flushing tank and replacing main hoses, the odor turned out to be the vent hose! We replace it every two years when the wipe and sniff test begins to show odor. It's always the problem now until the main hoses start to saturate again.

Randy Davison k7voe  
Posts: 65 |  Registered: April 16, 2001  
Jim Price, #1119 1991 "Lady Di" L Lanier
Registered User

  posted July 06, 2004 10:26 AM  
After dealing with tank oder last year , I can also support changing the stock hoses to the "best money can buy" hoses. I used Oder-Safe, about $8 a foot but a year later, only oder is from the stanchion vent when tank is full and day is hot. ADVISE --- Odor-Safe is VERY hard to work with, very stiff if cold (cold seems to be anything less than 100 degrees outside). Have pot of boiling water available to soak ends to soften or you will never get to fit barbs, especially the deck waste fitting - very tight. But once on, it seals extremely well with normal clamping.  
Posts: 111 |  Registered: December 18, 2001  
Mike Vaccaro, "Spirit," '88, #563
Registered User

  posted July 06, 2004 08:10 AM  
Recommend that you do a google for "head mistress" and you'll find out more about marine sanitation systems than you ever wanted to know!

Chances are, unless there is a leak, the tank is not the source of odor. In most cases, it's the hose. The stock Catalina 34 system is not an optimum design, and the factory-installed hose is adequate, but will eventually become a source of odor. In this case, the best option is to replace the hose. There are only one or two brands of high-quality hose that will do the job without permeating. Good hose is expensive and more difficult to work with that the inexpensive corrigated hose installed in the stock system.

Another possible source of odor, although less likely, is the vent hose.

A search/find on this site as well as finding the "head mistress" will provide plenty of bathroom reading material (sorry, could resist the pun).


Posts: 114 |  Registered: March 25, 2003  
John Langford, "Calypso", #1431
Registered User

  posted July 05, 2004 09:33 PM  
Why not try filling it up with fresh water and one of the enzyme based products like Candura and let the bugs do the work for you? Also, don't "sniff" at the possibility that changing the hose will fix the problem. I took off a 5 year old hose which still stinks after a month out in the sun drying out and baking.

Posts: 46 |  Registered: November 03, 2003  
Stu Jackson #224 1986 "Aquavite" SF Bay
Registered User

  posted July 04, 2004 06:14 PM  

Try this from a find on holding tank:

My suggestion (although you may have already considered it, and beyond the hoses) is to keep filling and slushing it with clean water. Beats trying to remove it.

If there's an inspection port, try using that for flush filling with a hose.

Obviously you can only do this if you can get off the coast and use a macerator. Unless you can connect directly to a pump out place to take it out, and one that has a hose for filling, and just keep flushing.

Good luck,


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