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Fresh Water System Commissioning & Sanitizing


You should sanitize your fresh water tank, hot water tank and the entire fresh water system at the start of each season. This is especially important if your water has a bad taste or strange odor. A clean sanitized system will greatly reduce the risk of developing coliform bacteria and will help protect the health of everyone onboard.

To sanitize the fresh water system and kill bacteria that may be present do the following:

  • Fill the fresh water tank half way with fresh water.

  • Prepare a chlorine solution:
    1. In a container with a gallon of fresh water mix 1/4 cup of household bleach, (5% sodium hypochlorite solution) such as Clorox or Purex, for every 15 gallons of tank capacity.

    2. Pour this mixture into the water tank.

    3. Complete filling of tank with fresh water.

CAUTION: Notify all persons aboard that the fresh water system is being sanitized. Do not allow anyone to drink from the fresh water system during the sanitizing process.


  • Go for a drive to mix the solution.

  • Turn on the fresh water pump.

  • Pump water through each faucet so that the feed lines are filled with the water and bleach mixture from the tank.

  • Run a quart of water out each faucet. You should be able to smell chlorine strongly at each faucet.

  • The hot-water tank also holds water. Run the hot water faucets until the capacity of the hot water tank has passed through the system to insure that the old water has been purged from the hot-water tank, and it is now filled with the water and bleach solution from the water tank.

  • Allow the water and bleach solution to stand in the system for three hours

  • Drain the entire system, hot water tank included, and then flushes the system with new fresh water.

  • To remove any excessive chlorine taste or odor that might remain, prepare a solution of one-quart vinegar to five gallons water.

  • Pump the vinegar solution through the water system and allow this solution to remain overnight.

  • Drain the system again and flush with fresh water.



Contributed by Capt. Tom Kenny. More can be found on his Chris Craft Constellation website.

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