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Author Topic:   Bilge Pump Wiring
Dan posted 10-08-2006 10:53 PM ET (US)   Profile for Dan   Send Email to Dan  
I want to install a bilge pump on my 1990 Montauk., and I need advice on which pump to buy. My battery is in the transom. I have an accessory switch that curently is used for the gps--not my idea. I also will need to buy the [hose] to the splash well. I need to know how to wire it too--of course!


Chuck Tribolet posted 10-08-2006 11:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for Chuck Tribolet  Send Email to Chuck Tribolet     
The Rule 500 will fit down there. Get the automatic version
that will try for a couple of seconds, and if it doesn't
detect a load, stop.

Get tubing that is smooth on the inside -- it makes a
significant difference. I changed mine out a year or two
ago, and it made a visible difference. I wish I had run
before and after measurements.

Wiring. The pump will have two wires. One goes to ground
the other to the switch. You'll want a separate bilge
pump switch.

Accessory IS for stuff like GPS.

Be sure to use a fuse.

Be sure to use Ancor marine grade wire and connectors. The
actual connections to bilge pump will be wet, so you want
solder, and then put the Ancor hot melt glue lined heat
shrink tubing over it.

I'd put the switch on the console


Dan posted 10-09-2006 09:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for Dan  Send Email to Dan     
Thank you, Chuck.

Great advice, especially about the smooth tubing!

jimh posted 10-09-2006 10:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Usually the pump manufacturer will include a schematic diagram for the proper wiring of the pump and any associated float switches and control switches. There is also an article in the REFERENCE section which shows in detail how the typical sump pump was wired in classic Boston Whaler boats. See:

Cockpit Sump Pump

pglein posted 10-13-2006 03:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for pglein  Send Email to pglein     
It's not as important on an unsinkable boat, but a bilge pump should always be wired in such a way that it still has power even when the main battery switch is turned off, and should have a three position switch independently controlling it. This switch should have an off, auto, and intermittent on position. Since it is not run through the main power switch like everything else, it needs to be independently fused, (close to the source), and the wiring needs to be inspected regularly.

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