Grey water in Marinas?

MYCBC – Why Join Us Forums General Discussion Grey water in Marinas?

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      Grey water in Marinas?
      Windspiration, Tue May 15 2012, 01:10PM

      When in a Marina is it ok to discharge tooth brush water?
      How about water from cleaning dishes (enviro friendly soap of course).
      You know what I mean, general water from the sink.

      I googled and it seems like most people do discharge grey water (including shower water for boats that have them) in Marinas but it does not seem quite right to me so I wanted to get a local opinion.


      Re: Grey water in Marinas?
      Windchime, Tue May 15 2012, 03:38PM

      Great post Windspiration!

      As you know, “Leave Only Wake” is one of our club slogans, and it means exactly what you are talking about in this post.

      Basically – Leave the areas we visit in the same condition, or better, than when we arrived.

      Marine etiquette is something that we all need to be conscious of whenever we are out sharing aquatic environment with others. And etiquette includes all things like: water discharge, noise, untidy/unsafe dock and power lines, halyards left untied to rattle against the mast at night, dock clutter, pets, tender moored properly, amount of anchor scope payed out, etc.

      As you have probably found on your Google searching, there are many versions of “good etiquette”. And when speaking of “gray water”, it can be a very gray topic (pardon the pun).

      In general, I think common courtesy prevails. Doing what’s right because it’s the right thing to do, even if your slip neighbour does not.

      We have been slipped and enjoying the beautiful serenity of the morning, only to have it interrupted by the big-boat next to us regurgitating gray water from the side of their though hull. In a matter of seconds the entire fairways is covered in soapy bubbles, and god knows what is now making its way over towards everyone’s boat hulls. We’ll just look at each other and say “takes all kinds” and then go for a walk rolleyes.png

      Regarding “Gray Water”

      Because trailer sailboats are made light for towing, there is rarely a gray water holding tank. And we don’t have factory showers, so the amount of gray water we make is as you say” “from brushing out teeth or doing the dishes”.

      Here is what we do:
      – We always inquire with the marina when checking-in, as to whether they have local
      rules governing marina etiquette. Some marinas may even have a “No BBQ” policy.
      – Because we have an “X” with the galley on the port side, we always try to get a “bow-
      in/port-tie” slip. This way, if we discharge our small amount of environmentaly friendly
      dishwater at the slip, it gets trapped and goes between us and the slip finger and
      dissipates quickly. Rarely has it ran out into the fairway. If it does make a tiny mess,
      we just look at each other and say “Oops, takes all kinds” and then go for a walk frown.png

      We installed a shower last year for use at anchor and have only used it once so far, and just politely poured the water out the head through-hull in the early am. But I do have a 5 gallon container for catching this if need be, and releasing it at a more appropriate time and place.

      If you are really concerned, there are a few things you can do:
      – create a boat mod with a 2-way valve, and a line leading to a 5 gallon collapsible jug
      to collect the dishwater from the sink for discharge later.
      – do not use the factory sink and use a wash basin, and take the water up to the dock
      – leave the water in the sink and wait until out of the slip and discharge in the channel.

      Regarding Brown Water (head)
      This is of course a horse of a different color, and a very different topic. ill.png

      We never discharge this overboard, at any time, for any reason. We always use the porta-potty pump-out station at the dock, or if the marina does not have a pump-out we take it to the washroom to empty late at night.

      I hope other members will add to this important post.

      Also check out the “Georgia Strait Alliance” for more info on how to protect and care for our coastal waters, our natural and beautiful marine backyard!

      Re: Grey water in Marinas?
      Windspiration, Wed May 16 2012, 05:58AM

      Thanks for the info Windchime. I really appreciate getting the perspective and advice of a local with experience.

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