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Vetus vacu flush toilet blockage


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I think our toilet is blocked from the leaving the bowl to the macerator, the macerator runs, but there is no forward motion, so I think it’s a big log poo stuck in the pipe this end of the macerator most of it went when I was flushing it, but then not all the water disappeared as is usual if you just use the macerator button.

, I am leaving it overnight, hopefully to down grade with the water in pan. But if it won’t flush tomorrow, what can I do, can I get a stick down there to mix things up, or is that not advised.

The tank should not be full for a few days yet, and although the canal is frozen at the moment, can’t see that being a reason.

Edited by Timx
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Whatever it is, Dometic or something else if it is a vacuum thing then you will probably need a straightened wire coat hanger.  Does the vacuum generator actually build a vacuum? if so then poke the end down the bowl and try to bend it to go along the outlet pipe. That's a start anyway. Vacuflush loos are prone to block. We have a great big screwdriver that lives alongside the loo, Anything that looks as though it might block the blasted thing gets manually macerated  before flushing. Sorry about the unsavoury details but these things are only OK when they are working perfectly which is seldom.

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2 hours ago, Bee said:

Whatever it is, Dometic or something else if it is a vacuum thing then you will probably need a straightened wire coat hanger.  Does the vacuum generator actually build a vacuum? if so then poke the end down the bowl and try to bend it to go along the outlet pipe. That's a start anyway. Vacuflush loos are prone to block. We have a great big screwdriver that lives alongside the loo, Anything that looks as though it might block the blasted thing gets manually macerated  before flushing. Sorry about the unsavoury details but these things are only OK when they are working perfectly which is seldom.

Really? On what basis are you saying that? I've had mine for 15 years and only once had a blockage. In that case the troublemaker was a particularly massive shit which would have been a problem for most toilets. Other than that it's worked pretty well and only fully serviced after 12 years of liveaboard use. Perhaps I've just been lucky. 

Edited by blackrose
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Not being an expert on these things, does a vac flush have a Macerator?

 

 

11 hours ago, Timx said:

I think our toilet is blocked from the leaving the bowl to the macerator, the macerator runs, but there is no forward motion,  

 

Edited by ditchcrawler
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Sounds like a Vertus macerator, not a Dometic Vacuflush.

But for what it's worth our Vacuflush has bocked in three different places during its 15 year life:

1. At the bottom of the pan. Under the ball valve there's a one inch hole where all the solids are broken up by being sucked through. Wipes don't break up and so block the hole. Solution is to hold the valve open with the flush lever and either retrieve the blocking wipe or poke the blocked through with a screwdriver.

2. In the pipe from the toilet to the vacuum/cassette unit. Solution was to replace the pipe as the blockage was limescale. Be sure to leave the pipe filled with vinegar occasionally to dissolve limescale to prevent this happening. Flexible pipe should be replaced every now and then anyway as it becomes porous over time and lets smells out.

3. At the spigot that joins the cassette to the docking station there is a 90 degree bend. Solution is to remove the cassette, pull back the spring loaded sleeve and clear the hole in the bottom of the pipe. The cassette in this instance was difficult to remove as the blockage prevented the spigot from sliding out of the cassette. You can get at the other side of the blockage by removing the end of the pipe from the toilet and poking at the other end of the blockage.

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1 hour ago, ditchcrawler said:

Not being an expert on these things, does a vac flush have a Macerator?

 

 

 

Not as such. It uses vacuum pressure to break up the waste by passing it through a funnel. It does macerate, but I'm not sure if that counts as a macerator?

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41 minutes ago, aread2 said:

Sounds like a Vertus macerator, not a Dometic Vacuflush.

But for what it's worth our Vacuflush has bocked in three different places during its 15 year life:

1. At the bottom of the pan. Under the ball valve there's a one inch hole where all the solids are broken up by being sucked through. Wipes don't break up and so block the hole. Solution is to hold the valve open with the flush lever and either retrieve the blocking wipe or poke the blocked through with a screwdriver.

2. In the pipe from the toilet to the vacuum/cassette unit. Solution was to replace the pipe as the blockage was limescale. Be sure to leave the pipe filled with vinegar occasionally to dissolve limescale to prevent this happening. Flexible pipe should be replaced every now and then anyway as it becomes porous over time and lets smells out.

3. At the spigot that joins the cassette to the docking station there is a 90 degree bend. Solution is to remove the cassette, pull back the spring loaded sleeve and clear the hole in the bottom of the pipe. The cassette in this instance was difficult to remove as the blockage prevented the spigot from sliding out of the cassette. You can get at the other side of the blockage by removing the end of the pipe from the toilet and poking at the other end of the blockage.

 

1. Alternative solution is not to put wipes down the toilet in the first place. I didn't think you were supposed to flush wipes anyway?

 

2. I'm still using the same Vetus flexible barrier hose that I installed the toilet with 15 years ago. No smells coming through and it's never been blocked. I've always lived in hard water areas since living on this boat.

 

3. I've never had any blockages at the spigot from the base unit to the cassette either.

 

As I said, perhaps I've just been very lucky. I don't throw toilet paper down my toilet either so perhaps that's the difference. I adopt the approach used in many developing countries and put the paper in a separate bin. I'd did the same thing on a previous boat with a pump out toilet so just carried on doing the same thing with this one. I'd do that on any boat toilet to avoid the potential of having to clear blockages. The one blockage I did have recently that I mentioned was just under the ball and was very easy to clear. 

Edited by blackrose
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I had a vacuflush system prior to changing for a macerator. Had to change the pipe from the bowl to vacuum unit and Leesan wanted to keep it as it was totally blocked with calcium and uric acid.  Good plan is to use descaler regularly

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2 hours ago, blackrose said:

Switch the toilet off and isolate the water feed to the toilet first.

Didn't think it necessary to say the obvious.

2 hours ago, blackrose said:

Really? On what basis are you saying that? I've had mine for 15 years and only once had a blockage. In that case the troublemaker was a particularly massive shit which would have been a problem for most toilets. Other than that it's worked pretty well and only fully serviced after 12 years of liveaboard use. Perhaps I've just been lucky. 

Ours blocked once through sons partner putting in something that she hadn't eaten first. Quick poke with screwdriver sorted that.

 

Then about 3 years ago, at 10 years old, it would block at odd times and require rodding through. I replaced the pipe between WC and docking station and no more problems. When I cut the old pipe open the internal diameter was down to about 20mm due to limescale andvuric acid.

 

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3 hours ago, blackrose said:

Really? On what basis are you saying that? I've had mine for 15 years and only once had a blockage. In that case the troublemaker was a particularly massive shit which would have been a problem for most toilets. Other than that it's worked pretty well and only fully serviced after 12 years of liveaboard use. Perhaps I've just been lucky. 

We've had ours for about the same length of time and I suppose I only remember the times it didn't work. To be honest it is mostly a problem with visitors. The main problem is scale and that accumulates on the 'ball' and then the rubber thingy doesn't seal. I'm still slightly surprised when it works though.

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3 hours ago, blackrose said:

Not as such. It uses vacuum pressure to break up the waste by passing it through a funnel. It does macerate, but I'm not sure if that counts as a macerator?

So are we discussing a macerator toilet of a Vac Flush one?  Reversing a macerator sometimes works but I can't imagine reversing a vac flush

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3 hours ago, blackrose said:

 

1. Alternative solution is not to put wipes down the toilet in the first place. I didn't think you were supposed to flush wipes anyway?

 

2. I'm still using the same Vetus flexible barrier hose that I installed the toilet with 15 years ago. No smells coming through and it's never been blocked. I've always lived in hard water areas since living on this boat.

 

3. I've never had any blockages at the spigot from the base unit to the cassette either.

 

As I said, perhaps I've just been very lucky. I don't throw toilet paper down my toilet either so perhaps that's the difference. I adopt the approach used in many developing countries and put the paper in a separate bin. I'd did the same thing on a previous boat with a pump out toilet so just carried on doing the same thing with this one. I'd do that on any boat toilet to avoid the potential of having to clear blockages. The one blockage I did have recently that I mentioned was just under the ball and was very easy to clear. 

All but the pipe blockage with scale occurred when friends had the boat. The family are well trained in what not to put down the loo.

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No word yet from the OP if it is a vacuum system or a macerator!

It sounds like it must be a macerator otherwise the OP would have mentioned the vacuum pump pumping or not.

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9 hours ago, pearley said:

Didn't think it necessary to say the obvious.

 

I thought it was necessary. What's obvious to you and me isn't necessarily obvious to everyone.

Edited by blackrose
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Hi thanks for answers, it’s a vetus vacu flush to remote tank with a macerator, I did ring a man who advised me not to poke things down the bowl in case I ruptured something, advised filling the bowl with water and leave for a few hours, which I have done, and tried a plunger but with no luck. So I will empty water out of bowl tomorrow, and poke a wooden stick down there tomorrow,maybe with some hot water first, if that’s the advice. 

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So it's a vacuum flush AND a macerator!

Our Leesan vacuflush only ever failed due to blockages causing loss of vacuum i.e. The duck valves or the bottom of toilet ball valve. In those cases the vacuum pump ran continuously. You don't mention the vacuum pump running so perhaps the system is still under vacuum...hence a blockage down the pipe somewhere. Sounds a daft design to have a macerator in the line. The vacuum should be able to deal with breaking poo down!

Looks like you need to get at the macerator and clean it out/check for a vacuum. Not a clue for the details as I don't know the system.

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