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Macerator Pros, Cons

iinstalling macerator sani-con flo-jet

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#1 deenalholmes

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 06:04 PM

I know some of the newer motorhomes come standard with these but mine didn't (2006 Country Coach Intrigue).

I'm thinking of adding this.

I'm curious to know of experiences both pro and con and how hard to install one.
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#2 wolfe10

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 06:25 PM

Welcome to the FMCA Forum.

For a good start on getting information on macerators, click on "Search" above.

Then type in: macerator.

They are mentioned in several different threads.

Brett
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#3 deenalholmes

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 06:49 PM

Brett:

That helped a lot. Still didn't see anywhere about how hard to install or how satisfied people generally are. Just curious. I think I will also try googling. I will be in Indio for the rally. There will probably be information there along with other RVers with experience.
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#4 deenalholmes

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 07:27 PM

I should have googled it first. It looks easy to install and good reviews on it. Sorry to have wasted anyone's time.
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#5 garykd

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 07:53 PM

Hi deenalholmes,
Welcome to the FMCA forum. I doubt anyone can waste anybodies time on an RV forum. I have the Sani-Con macerator with the grey water bypass. It was very easy to install. It hasn't been off the coach in over 2 years. For me, I will not go back to the 3" hose. The SaniCon works as advertised and I would make the same purchase again. Once mounted it is pretty much a closed system. There is one small cap to be remove and replaced when in travel mode. I did purchase an extra length of hose. I have had to use it only once or twice. The grey water bypass is a must feature, for me. It allows one to leave the grey tank valve open, while the black tank fills.
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#6 lpfdon

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Posted 23 December 2010 - 09:36 PM

Of all the extras on a coach the Sani-Con system (macertator) is one of the best add ons. It is an easy and glove-free system of handling your sewage. A simple( 20 foot) 1 and 1/4 inch hose that is flexible and easy to maneuver. What is surprising is that we seldom see other coaches with the system. I have had two problems with it over the last couple of years-a screw was caught in the blades of the macerator, and my grey water bypass has blocked up briefly. The grey water tank empties on its own through the bypass and we pump the black every four days or so.
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#7 zaferde

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 11:27 AM

My coach came with a Sani-Con installed, after using the old 3" hose on my other units, I wouldn't want to go back to them. With that said, the ONLY drawback I can see is that it does take a little long to dump your tanks, othe than that, og for it.

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#8 TBUTLER

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 12:27 PM

I installed a Flo-Jet in our 2004 Windsor shortly after we got it. The install was relatively simple. Positioning the unit so it will feed well from the sewage outlet took some consideration. Being entirely a d-i-y project, I had to do some searching to find a suitable outlet hose. I chose to get a transparent reinforced hose and cut it in sections of varying length so I could use only as much as I wanted. A friend (sailor type) directed me to a farm supply store where I obtained quick connect endings for my hose sections so they snap together easily. Look in the pump section for hose fittings. They come in sizes from 3/4 inch hose to 2 or three inch hose. When we visited my mother, her sewage clean-out for the house was 80 feet from where we parked. I had enough hose to handle that run and carried it with me. It paid off several times being able to take a site with no sewer hook-up but being able to dump at a nearby site (with permission) without having to relocate. I also had several sites where it was more convenient to park backward in the site and then run the hose under the MH to the dump on the other side.

You will have to wire in an electrical supply, switch and fuse for the unit. I was able to tap into the DC wiring to the inverter for a short run of #10 wire. The wire, switch and fuse were standard auto store items.

We do not have a gray water bypass so we just have to run the macerator more often. I don't consider that a great inconvenience. I installed the feed line to the macerator so it could be unhooked from the sewage outlet. I can and do use the 3" line when we are parked in one place for an extended period of time. I'll also use the 3" line if Louise has a large amount of laundry to wash.

Finally, I purchased a second Flo-Jet when they were on sale at Camping World. The pump uses an impeller with flexible rubber vanes which will wear out in time. When a vane breaks off or becomes ineffective then the pump takes longer to empty, evenutally becoming veerrryyy slow. I rebuild one pump after it has dried out good and then keep it in storage waiting for the other pump to wear out. I have to rebuild a pump (full time living) about every two years. Rebuild kits for our pump are available from West Marine. I talked to one person who gave up on their macerator because it had become so slow. He didn't know that they required an occasional replacement of the impeller.

For an on-the-road dump site (Flying J, etc.), you can't beat the convenience and cleanliness of the macerator.
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#9 Guest_BillAdams_*

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Posted 24 December 2010 - 08:18 PM

I am always interested when people say you can't beat the cleanliness of a macerator type setup. How much cleaner can you get than perfectly clean? I use a 3" hose, never see a drop of waste and I am done dumping in a minute or so (while the macerator based units are just getting started). I have never had to pump my poop 20' uphill so that's not really an issue for me either and I have been on the road full time since 1997. You mention Flying J. My worse nightmare is pulling into the "J" only to find that the guy in front of me has a little 5/8" hose running to the dump. I could be there forever waiting for him to finish up!

#10 bthomforde

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Posted 25 December 2010 - 10:22 PM

I've been reading the pro's and con's of macerators for quite a while to see if I should get one and so far haven't seen any reason to get one.
We full time and the only time I can see a macerator would be preferred over a 3" hose is if you have to pump/dump up hill or a great distance, neither has been an issue for us in over 2 years of full timing.
Like Bill I've never had a mess (maybe my time will come) with the 3" hose.
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#11 LARRYANelson

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Posted 12 December 2011 - 06:47 PM

In our travel group, some of the members have purchased and installed macerators that are operated by water pressure. They connect another hose to the water hydrant with a Wye connection at the park and/or have the mecerator mounted so they can just open or close ball valves to operate.

I have reviewed the installation instructions and it states that an approved backflow assembly is required to be installed on the water source to the mecerator, An approved backflow assembly is either a Reduced Pressure Principle Assembly or an approved Air-Gap. This installations have a direct connection from the potable water supply to the sewer. If the conditions are correct, there is a possibility of backsiphonage of sewerage into the portable water system of the park that you are at. Some of the diseases that could be caused by this is really bad.

There is one rig in our travel group, that I know of, has a mecerator that is operated with a 12 volt motor, he is very pleases with the operation.
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#12 JMGOLDEN

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Posted 13 December 2011 - 07:55 AM

Bthomforde :

What you said brought back memories of the time my wife JJ & I were in Mountain Home, Arkansas. It was a nice coast to coast at that time. The site I was given was great except for one small issue. The dump was somewhere between 30 to 40 feet away from the pad. I tried to get another site but it was the last one? 4 hoses to hook up and very little drop in elevation from the rig to the dump hole. I am sure I would have made Funniest Home Videos if someone put a camera on me as I tried to "snake" my waste to the dump. Boy could I have used a macerator then.

And you are right, it's just a matter of time before you will have that "unique" experience with the 3" hose. It won't be fun then, but you will eventually laugh down the road. Now that you bring it up, I wonder how many stories there are out there on "dumping".
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#13 chucknewman

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 01:03 PM

I have to agree with Bill. The macerator is another marketing push to convince you that you can't live without it. We've been RVing since 1977 and full timing for two years, and I haven't found a valid reason for one yet. But I've found many reasons not to have one. As Tom pointed out the pump impellers don't last forever. And ask anyone who works for a sewer district. Waste is waste whether it is wet or dry. If a campground doesn't have the common sense to install sewer outlets at an appropriate grade, we move to one that does. Paying for a stupid design just perpetuates mediocrity.

Larry posted "An approved backflow assembly is either a Reduced Pressure Principle Assembly or an approved Air-Gap." Actually, having worked for a water & power agency for 25 years, an approved back flow assembly is whatever the individual State dictates. And that varies from state to state. In today's environmental atmosphere, if you have any locally non-approved direct connection between potable water supply and a sewer system, you're asking for major legal trouble. I don't care what the marketing literature says. And if I see anyone with this configuration I will be calling the local health department and code enforcement agency. In California, even a private potable well water system directly connected to a public potable water system is illegal.

Jmgolden posted "...it's just a matter of time before you will have that "unique" experience with the 3" hose." In 30+ years I haven't had any "unique" experiences with 3" hoses. If the macerator pundits are saying 3/4" or 1" hoses don't leak, or don't break, or don't require care and periodic replacement; that just is pure fantasy.

As in Tom's case, if we had a need due to specific "up hill" circumstances from time to time, I would get the portable version macerator that comes in a case with hose and pump for those few occasions. But to pay around $500. when all is said and done to have another maintenance intensive mechanical item that requires several times longer dumping periods, is not a choice for me.

Chuck
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#14 Guest_BillAdams_*

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 09:37 PM

Marketing is all about convincing us that we can't live without the stuff we don't need.
My 1988 coach had a built in macerator that was connected to a dump valve and fed through a 1 1/2" pipe to the passenger side. Why you might ask? Well, with that setup you could be driving down the road and hit the "on" switch from the drivers seat. The sewage would be ground and pumped at high speed into the ditches along the road side. You really did not want to be a hitch hiker when this coach drove by!
What are folks with macerators doing with their sewage? Hard to tell, but it sure gives the user a lot more options to dump their sewage where it does not belong that those who use the standard 3" gravity feed.

#15 nalcon

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 10:56 PM

I installed a Clean Dump the weekend I bought my MH. Very easy to install. Great thing. I've never used a 3" and hope I never have to. I also pump 75 feet at the house to a cleanout. As far as convienience, it can't be beat. I really don't think it takes me much longer to dump than others I've watched using the slinky. I drive a little faster so it all equals out. Besides, what's your hurry? I think you'll find most that have used macerators like em.
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#16 Guest_BillAdams_*

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Posted 21 December 2011 - 08:46 PM

Hey, if I thought I would ever need to pump my poop 75' from my coach I would own just such a system. In over 12 years of full-timing I haven't run into this kind of a situation even once so "for me" there is no motivation to spend money to fix a problem that does not exist.
YMMV.

#17 chucknewman

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Posted 24 December 2011 - 01:16 PM

"Besides, what's your hurry?" Actually, it is not to rush or hurry. It is called common courtesy or consideration for others. Kind of like not driving slow in the fast lane.
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#18 Brucegreen

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 01:10 PM

I have been RVing for more than 45 years, starting with trailers and then to a 40 Ft Diesel Pusher with "toad" for 10 years and have recently downsized to a 25 ft B+ (Leisure Van Libero and love it). I must say I have had mishaps with a 3" hose. (What a Mess.) - but since I got a macerator on my Class A (7 years ago) as an add on and now have a factory installed one on my Libero, I never want to go back to the messy 3" hose. By using a Macerator there is absolutley less potential for mess and the dumping options increase marketly. I have dumped in many toilets directly and in most cases I had to push the effluent up hill and at times as far away as 60ft. At my house I have a permanent dump setup but I could not do this in my situation without the use of a Macerator. It works like a charm and do not have to worry about taking a dumping trip upon return home. (must pump uphill.)

The hose with my Macerator is 21ft, but I carry an extension 50ft 1in heavy duty rubber hose and use as required. I don't find it takes so much longer to dump with the Macerator but I would never use anything less than a 1" hose for this purpose. (Smaller hose = more time.) Like everything, systems have to be maintained. I purchased a spares kit for my Macerator just in case - as Murphy says "if something can go wrong it will."
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#19 nalcon

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 01:39 PM

"Besides, what's your hurry?" Actually, it is not to rush or hurry. It is called common courtesy or consideration for others. Kind of like not driving slow in the fast lane.


Common courtesy and consideration for others also applies to the people waiting.
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#20 my86gw

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 02:04 PM

Our coach came with macerator, after 3 years of using, I have removed it, worked good but it never totally emptied attachment hose. Summers were very "smelly", until disconnecting and storing macerator away.
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