So there I was, a few weeks later, staring at the standing water. Slow? It isn't draining at all. Ok, maybe a little. 15 minutes for 4 inches of dirty dish water to disappear can break your heart. There isn't but six inches of drop between the sink and thru hull but 15 minutes? To add insult to injury some runaway coffee grounds brought that trickle to a halt.
This post isn't about the comedy that ensued with the diagnosis and repeated failures of fixes, cuts and curses. I will tell you I took everything apart twice, poked and prodded, then re-installed to no avail.
The check valve wasn't working correctly because I could open the seacock and some seawater would come out of it. (Yes, I checked to make sure it was installed the right way). But that also meant that it was at least a little open right?
I figured that with so little head and such a big valve even a little resistance could hold things up. The solution? Install a pump of course. After a little google search I found other's have had this same problem and used a macerator pump to solve it. Perfect! And the check valve wouldn't even mater.
Several boat bucks and two days later, with additional cuts, scrapes and bruises, the pump was installed and wired. I had to use the breaker from the head macerator as there wasn't any spare breakers. We don't intend to pump overboard so not really a problem.
The moment of truth came and went so quickly I reenacted it several times just to be sure. Start pump, pump runs, sink water doesn't move, pump kicks off the breaker. Well bother, I'm guessing the check valve does matter. Maybe the gate is stuck? I run off to Ace, where by now it's like Norm walking into Cheers, and pick up a cheep wire snake. Back at the boat I pull the hose off again (i'm an expert) and quickly realize the business end of the snake would get stuck in the check valve if I was successful in getting it loosened up, so I used the plain end and jammed it in. And jammed and jammed. Stuck check valve for sure. So I did the only sane thing I could think of, I leaned in, gritted my teeth, and continued to shove that wire hard like a mad man stabbing his demons. I used all the curses I knew, and made up a few new ones. Then pop! Yup, something broke free.
With a big silly grin I hooked everything back up, refilled the sink, reset the breaker and hit the switch. For at least five seconds the water drained, then the breaker tripped again. Damn, what could be wrong now? It wasn't possible that it was still plugged.
Long story short, I installed a spade fuse block and put the pump on a 15 amp fuse. Low and behold the system worked perfectly. It makes a racket like a garbage disposal (and works like one too, blades and all). The sink drains in seconds and whatever fits through the strainer will be pumped out, no questions asked. I felt like Tim Taylor scavenging for things to test the system. Noodles, peals, coffee grounds, all was fair game. I just mite have to do dishes more often!