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Does anybody use a watermaker?

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    Red tide is finally gone from here so mine will be back on tomorrow. When the tide hit my prefilter turned BLACK (and I do mean solid black) overnight. It rinsed out fine but was ugly. And the stench when I first kicked on the watermaker was horrendous. My discharge is in the sink -- usually it smells salty, but this was entirely different. The smell cleared after a few minutes.

    Anyway, during the red tide fiasco, I stopped running Katy. The remove filter/rinse and dry overnight was just too much hassle. I admit I am totally spoilt by Katy, and am SO GRATEFUL to finally no longer have to haul water. It has made a huge difference in my happiness quotient.

    I'm glad the tide is over here too. We lost all three of our anhinga water birds (saw one floating in the canal yesterday and the other two disappeared. The night herons are skinny.

    Now that I've got Katy, having water has changed my life. Literally!!! Long showers, doing laundry (using the machine versus hand washing) and just everything is easier with plenty of water. I don't want to go back to the no-watermaker life. It has changed my life.


      Centek has a prefilter cartridge and filter that will remove petroleum before it gets to the membrane. I tell you it sure does look interesting. A friend though has a Spectra said "that sounds like a solution looking for a problem" which struck me as quite true. Centek also has a small filter (like the little ones that West Marine sells for under your sink (about 6" high) that is supposed to go on your bilge discharge that might be useful too.

      I'm lucky -- the only think in my bilge is salt water, fur, and my hair. It's long, so that's why I clear the 800gph pump screen every Monday.


        Deleted post


          Bring this thread back up. I have a specific question about running the watermaker in fresh water.
          ibhave been doing that with mine in lake union Seattle. And have not had problems. I turn the pressure down to about 320psi and watch the water flow so it’s at the max. (Mine is only 20gph)
          I don’t have any issues.
          i am a little concerned that I only have 1 x 5 micron filter between the input and watermaker. And feel like I should have 2 maybe a 20 then 5 micron.

          BUT My question is about using in fresh. A pretty technical marine engineer heard I was using mine in fresh a couple of weeks back and told me not too. His point was the reverse osmosis is not designed for fresh. Which of course makes sense. But his point was:
          1. The only real filtration is that 1x 5 micron filter
          2. the membrane is not helping in any way with fresh water
          3. I will likely damage the membrane without any salt in the water.

          yet this thread and others show people using in the fresh. Sounds like I might be wise to add another pre-filter. But am I causing harm by using in the fresh?
          its an AMI maritime 400
          BLOG ABOUT MY BOAT...
          5788 Man 610's- Love Her !
          Sold:Bayliner 3587 | Extended Hull


            Think of the membrane as a filter, and salt water as a medium that has particles you want to filter out suspended in it.

            If you ran a medium with no or few suspended particles in it, it does not harm the filter.

            Also think of your membranes not as something permanent, but as a replaceable item. They have a lifespan. My 40 GPH watermaker uses two dow membranes. I just replaced them for approx $320 each, I produced thousands of gallons of water over a 4 year lifespan.

            My best advice is to use your watermaker and enjoy it, yes in fresh water. Replace the membranes as needed. Adding a 20 micron prefilter will help extend the life of the 5 micron. I replace my 20 micron 2-3 times before my 5 micron needs replacing.

            KEVIN SANDERS
            4788 LISAS WAY - SEWARD ALASKA

            where are we right now?



              Great Kevin. That was exactly what I thought and same sentiment. If I have to change the membrane a little earlier but it gives me water when I use it. So be it.
              BLOG ABOUT MY BOAT...
              5788 Man 610's- Love Her !
              Sold:Bayliner 3587 | Extended Hull