Every year we hear of boats sinking, most of them at the dock. The usual method of dealing with ingress of water is to install a bilge pump, driven by a float switch that is activated when water in the bilge reaches a certain level. While this sounds sufficient, there are many factors that may prevent the bilge pump from operating correctly, such as loss of power due to corroded wiring, or debris which blocks the pump or prevents the float switch from operating. Because of the catastrophic results of this kind of failure a simple system to monitor the operation of the bilge pump should be installed in every boat, no matter what size.
This comprehensive bilge monitoring system will monitor voltages at certain points, displaying their status on a small sunlight viewable display, and sounding a loud buzzer if there is a problem. The high bilge water detector is a sensitive detector that has no moving parts to foul, and the texting module will send an SMS to your phone if there is a problem. If there is an Internet connection onboard and you are away from the boat, you can use N2KView or N2KView Mobile to manually turn on the bilge pump through Maretron’s DC solid-state Relay (DCR100). And with the included accessories, you will be forewarned if the boat starts to move, a door or hatch has been opened, carbon monoxide or smoke is detected.
The following table shows the products included within this example system plus a list of the information or data available for display.
|Product||Description||Available Data List|
|DSM410||Helm pod display||4.1” display shows data in this list, monitors the data and if there is a problem will sound internal or external buzzer and send a text message to the SMS100.|
|SMS100||Texting module||Sends text messages to one or more phone numbers when any monitored data in this list goes outside programmed limits|
|GPS200||Cabin top GPS||Position, speed over ground, course over ground, time, date, magnetic variation and more|
|SIM100||Switch indicator||3 high bilge water indicators, magnetic door switch, smoke/heat detector, CO detector|
|ALM100||Alarm buzzer||Sounds a loud buzzer when any monitored data in this list goes outside programmed limit|
|RIM100||Run indicator||Monitors pump breaker status, pump run status, counts and times pump runs|
|DCR100||DC Relay||Switching DC circuits with current measurement|
|N2KView||Vessel montoring and control software||PC onboard, at home, or at office monitors and displays data in this list|
|IPG100||N2K to ethernet||NMEA 2000 to ethernet gateway|
|E2500||Wifi router||Allows monitoring wirelessly or wired onboard, or remotely with internet connection|
|MCS-25GB||Maretron Real Time Cloud Service||Subscription service that allows real time access to the vessel from anywhere in the world with internet connection|
The following screenshots (click to enlarge) are examples of Text Messages you can receive when monitoring bilge status.
Bilge Pump Power Loss
Bilge Pump Running
High Bilge Water Alarm
In addition to the bilge text messages, the following text messages (click to enlarge) are also available with this intermediate system.
Boat Moving Alarm
Door Open Alarm
The following screenshots (click to enlarge) are examples of how the bilge status will be displayed on the DSM410.
Bilge Override Switches
Bilge Pump Not Powered
Bilge Pump Powered
Bilge Pump Running
Bilge Switch and Currents
High Bilge Water
Pump Powered Running with Count and Time
Run Counter Timer
In addition to the bilge monitoring screenshots shown above, you also have the ability to display these example screenshots (click to enlarge).
COG Course Up Rose
Local Time and Date
SOG and COG
Sunrise and Sunset
Switch Indicators Off
Switch Indicators Off Color
Switch Indicators On
Switch Indicators On Color
UTC Date and Time
The following components (click to enlarge) are examples of how monitored data can be displayed on a PC, tablet or smartphone using N2KView or N2KView Mobile. The components are arranged on favourite screens at positions and sizes to suit the user's needs. See N2KView web page for exampes of full screenshots.
Bilge Pump Off
Bilge Pump Run Counter
Bilge Pump Running
Bilge Pump Run Timer
Bilge Pump Switch Off
Bilge Pump Switch On
COG Head Up Rose
COG North Up Rose
Course Over Ground Digital
Lat and Long
Lat and Long Degrees
Lat and Long DMS
Local Date DMY
Local Date MDY
You can set an alert for any monitored parameter in this example system, which will flash on the display, sound the display’s internal buzzer, sound the stand-alone buzzer (ALM100), and send a text message to your phone. Shown below are few examples of the alerts that can be set for this system.