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Specifications: Plumbing Systems


The plumbing systems consist of fresh water, manual and electrical pumps, and the heads (toilets). This section will describe their location and how they operate.

Fresh Water System

Water Tanks: are made of rotationally molded polyethylene. Connected to them are the following hoses: a) fill hose is located on the tank top and connects to the deck water fill pipe; b) feed hose located along the tank bottom connects to the water system at the water selection Y valve; c) air vent hose is internal and leads under the sheerline into the bow compartment.

Water Fills: are located on the deck. Be sure the water cap threads are cleansed of dirt for a better seal. The water may develop a “taste: after a long period of time. Instead of flushing it out you can add a commercial water preservation agent, such as Sudbury Aqua Fresh crystals, to greatly improve the taste.

Water Tank Selection Y-Valve: is located on centerline below the cabin sole just beside the gallery sink island. After the tank is changed, open a water faucet to allow air to escape. When the water trickles out, close the faucet momentarily to allow the pump to build up pressure (check that it’s turned on!); then open the faucet until a steady stream flows. It may be necessary to repeat the process several times to bleed all the air from the system.

Water Pressure Pump: is located beneath the sink in the head. The pump operates off the DC electrical system and pressurizes the entire water system. Should any problems arise, read its manual. If the system is not pressurizing, first check that the pump is working correctly, ie. It’s pumping water. Secondly, check that all hoses are securely connected to their fittings. Thirdly, ensure all air pockets are eliminated as outlined above. If there is still a problem, consult your dealer.

Water Heater: is located below the sink the head. Water is heated by either the engine or optional shore 110VAC power. If the water heater is on shore power ensure a continuous supply of water is available to it, otherwise the electrical element within it will burn out. Due to this potential risk, water heater elements are excluded from warranty. Thus, be certain the water pressure pump is always on while hooked up to the shore power.


All thru-hull fittings are of glass reinforced nylon or bronze. For safety reasons, we recommend that you tape a soft wooden plug adjacent to all thru-hull fittings in the event of a hose or valve failure. These fittings each have valve-handles. To reduce confusion, remember the long end of the handle indicates the direction of flow.

Pump Systems

Pumps are easy to maintain and just as easily forgotten…they always happen to seize up when you need them most. Consequently, take care to keep their screens clean and rubber gaskets/bellows working correctly.

  • Sink Drains empty directly overboard through a thru-hull fitting beneath each sink.
  • Shower Sump Pumps empty into head sinks
  • Icebox Drain valve is located under the bilge board and should be closed to keep in the cold air except when draining.
  • Bilge Pumps both electrical and manual. Both pump intakes are located in the keel stub under the main cabin floor.
    • Manual pump is operated utilized from the cockpit.
    • Electrical Bilge Pump is wired to a switch on the electrical panel.

Head System

The J/42 is equipped with two certified marine heads which are capable of discharging effluents into a holding tank or overboard. Both systems are easy to operate and with correct usage and proper maintenance, will provide many years of use.

Before operating the HEAD, ensure you have read its manual thoroughly and understand the proper procedures. Silly mistakes can cause sever “head”-aches at the worst possible time! And a word to the wise


The head is a large pump which takes in seawater and flushes wasted into the holding tank or overboard. The salt-water intake thru-hull is underneath the head sink and the discharge is in the port aft locker. Remember open/closed position on these thru-hulls. It is good seamanship to close the intake and discharge seacock for the head when not in use.

When seawater and effluent are pumped through the head, they’re pumped into the holding tank action of pumping the toilet handle. The waste discharge fitting on deck is provided so a shoreside pump-out station (ie.vacuum cleaner) can empty the tank. Care should be taken not to overfill the holding tank as effluent can block the vent hose and may damage the tank…or worse, burst the hose. If the toilet is difficult to pump, check to see if the holding tank is overfilled. “When in doubt, pump it out!”

The holding tank must be pumped out before winter storage. Dumping a quart of anti-freeze through the heads will prevent the seals and equipment from cracking. For your information, the following hoses are connected to the tank.

  • Waste Discharge Hose from the head
  • Pump-out Hose leading to the deck fitting
  • Vent Hose to vent the tank overboard.

Be certain the pump on the toilet is pumped 15 to 20 strokes after waste is emptied from the toilet bowl to insure the waste is pumped fully through the hoses.

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