We decided to upgrade our watermaker, taking a big leap in volume delivered in less time, while using the same absolute power.  Reverse osmosis (RO) desalinators perform wonderful feats by taking in the plentiful salt water of the ocean, passing it through a membrane under high pressure to remove salt and minerals and produce pure, fresh water into our 100 gallon water tank.  

RO water turns out to be quite tasteless, but refreshing.  Interestingly, once you develop a "taste" for this water you can quickly detect chlorine or other additives in municipal water supplies.  Fresh water is also our source for washing dishes, laundry and showers.  An increase in production should allow us to even rinse off the boat on occasion to battle degradation by the elements.

Previously, our Village Marine Little Wonder unit produced 5-6 gal/hr and was well-designed & reliable, but used quite a lot of power at about 17 amps/hr.  

We have 675 amp-hours stored in our battery bank so this draw is not negligible, not to mention all of our other power needs (batteries don't like to go below 50% full).  In practice, we'd often run our 5.5 kW diesel generator for an hour to charge our batteries and start to make water, followed by a few more hours running under solar power to make about 10-15 gallons every other day to replenish our water usage.  

Our new unit is a CruiseRO AC watermaker with 30 gal/hr productivity.  It only runs on AC (110V) power and can be run directly by our generator.  

Now that same hour of generator run can make 30 gallons of water directly, while charging our house batteries instead of depleting them.  

Otherwise, we can make water using battery power via the inverter.   The power cost to the batteries is the same per gallon of water as our old system.  But we now make more water faster!

When when motoring the power is "free" because the alternators will provide the ~80 amps/hr needed. 


Now how to fit this unit into our starboard bow under the bunk where the old unit used to sit..?  


This space is shared by our hot water heater and required a little shimmying and creative shelf-work.

Mark did an excellent job installing the new unit with its 2x 40" membranes, high pressure pump and boost pump, three filter units and all of the wiring and plumbing required.

Most cruisers are excellent at conserving water, some are amazing.  We are conscientious about water usage and we highly value having a watermaker.  We used to have to gear up for a heavy use day such as laundry day.  This new water availability should turn out to be quite the luxury.


© M&M 2019