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Marine Sanitation Device

Boat Maintenance Special:

By Capt. Bill Pike

Adding water to your head before leaving your boat will help keep the internal components from drying out.
Adding water to your head before leaving your boat will help keep the internal components from drying out.

Summertime Deluge

During the summer I visit Betty Jane about once a week. Lord knows what the temperature rises to inside during my absence with the Florida sun beating down. To preserve the gaskets and other interior components in Betty’s MSD (a pricey Groco Model K manual type that’s been working like clockwork for more than ten years without a rebuild), I add several 8-ounce cups of fresh water (typically from the sink in the head) to the bowl at the end of each visit. Why? The small amount of water that resides in the bowls of most abbr title="Marine Sanitation Device">MSDs after that final flush, whether the abbr title="Marine Sanitation Device">MSDs be manual, vacuum, or jet, will evaporate in just a few days, either due to sun-driven heat or the effects of permanent or semi-permanent air-conditioning. What I call my “summertime deluge” keeps gaskets and other rubbery components from drying out, a sure way to destroy them prematurely.