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Best bilge pump setup?

Old 03-21-2019, 02:24 PM
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Default Best bilge pump setup?

I'm designing a new panel for the boat. Going through the switches and thinking about the two bilge pumps and wondering if I need an auto-off-man switch (DPDT) or on-off (SPST).

What is the best bilge pump setup these days and what switch does it need?

Scenarios I am aware of, maybe more.
1. Pump with external float
2. Pump with internal float
3. Pump that runs on a timer or senses (?) every few minutes

edited where I had called the floats a switch

Last edited by silverg; 03-21-2019 at 05:22 PM.
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:51 PM
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I like two pumps on one external switch and a separate float for each pump.
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Old 03-21-2019, 03:21 PM
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I prefer 2 pumps with seperate switches/ ON-OFF and water witch bilge switchs wired direct to my house battery....this way I can pump manually if needed with my dash switches and auto if my battery switch is on or off. This way I still have ability to pump if the water witch detects high water levels for any reason....
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Old 03-21-2019, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by fishingfun View Post
I like two pumps on one external switch and a separate float for each pump.
this is my setup as well. Lowest lump/switch wired to my house battery. It is a smaller pump for dewatering the inevitable drips. Backup pump on a seporate switch/float, wired to starting battery. Both are fused, and wired so that the float side of the wiring works even if the battery switch is turned off. The secondary pump has much more capacity and is mounted slightly above the other, and it’s float switch is a decent amount higher in the bilge (about 6”) in theory it should never run. Both have independent discharge hoses.
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Old 03-21-2019, 04:07 PM
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2 pumps of your choice.
2 Ultra Safety Systems float switches
wire direct floats to battery, wire manual on/off switches at dash.
add high water alarm if so desired.
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Old 03-21-2019, 05:24 PM
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I will be using carling style switches with etched labeling Edited op where I had called the floats switches
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Old 03-21-2019, 08:31 PM
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Definitely ultra float switches if you want to do it right....
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Old 03-21-2019, 08:42 PM
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I had a Water Witch go bad some how. Switched to an Ultra and haven’t had any issues.
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Old 03-22-2019, 04:20 AM
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I watched the install video of the ultra switch. They say to run one wire to the auto side of a DPDT switch. I guess this wire would instead go straight to the positive post on a battery or a power post/terminal strip followed by a fuse? The pump would then only run when the float rises.
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Old 03-22-2019, 04:30 AM
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Originally Posted by silverg View Post
I watched the install video of the ultra switch. They say to run one wire to the auto side of a DPDT switch. I guess this wire would instead go straight to the positive post on a battery or a power post/terminal strip followed by a fuse? The pump would then only run when the float rises.

Sounds right but it's best to refer to or draw a diagram to make sure your circuits are completed in the conditions you want.

Last edited by LeakinLena; 03-22-2019 at 04:37 AM.
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Old 03-22-2019, 09:15 AM
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Originally Posted by silverg View Post
I watched the install video of the ultra switch. They say to run one wire to the auto side of a DPDT switch. I guess this wire would instead go straight to the positive post on a battery or a power post/terminal strip followed by a fuse? The pump would then only run when the float rises.
Both of my bilge auto position switches are wired direct to the house battery.... so as they say around here, 6 to one half a dozen to the other.......as long as youre auto position on your switch is always hot..
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Old 03-22-2019, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Weekend-Hooker View Post
Both of my bilge auto position switches are wired direct to the house battery.... so as they say around here, 6 to one half a dozen to the other.......as long as youre auto position on your switch is always hot..
Why wire the switches directly to the battery. The floats should be wired directly to the battery and the exterior switched wired so it cuts off when the batteries are cut off. This way the floats work when everything is shut off and your switch is wired so it can't be left on by accident running down the battery.
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