Per Day vs Per Hour: Common Misconceptions when Purchasing a Watermaker

Become dockside independent


If you’re a boat enthusiast shopping for a reliable reverse osmosis watermaker to make life aboard more comfortable and create dockside independence, you have probably seen a host of systems being offered with production capabilities of 1,800 Gallons Per Day or more. It’s natural to fixate on the per-day number and think, “if I have a 250-gallon water tank, why would I need a system that makes 1,800 Gallons Per Day? That is way more than I need!”. But, much like your generator, you will more than likely only run your watermaker for a few hours at a time, not 24/7.

The truth is, once you get a watermaker, you’ll use water more than you think. Whether you’re crossing the Atlantic for two months or anchoring in a beautiful cove for the weekend, with freshwater at your fingertips, you will do everything from wash your hands more frequently and take longer showers, to cook and clean your dishes more, wash down your deck, and carry less bottled water! For all these reasons, choosing a marine watermaker based on how many gallons of water it can produce per hour is the key to making the right purchase decision the first time. All too often, boaters start off with a smaller system and come to regret it.

Most marine watermakers’ available output is rated on a per-day basis, but you can easily determine the per-hour production that suits you.

-Determine the size of freshwater storage you have.

-Determine how many hours per day you want to operate the watermaker per run cycle.

-Compute how many gallons of water you need to make per hour in order to refill your water tank.

Example: If you have a freshwater tank that holds 120 gallons of water and you want to run your watermaker for two hours, then you should buy a watermaker that is capable of producing 60 gallons of water per hour.

Watermakers for sailing, power, fishing, and pleasure boats are offered in a wide array of sizes, some as small as 2 Gallons Per Hour and some as large as 150 Gallons per hour or more! There is no one-size-fits-all system, so finding the right one takes into account the size of your freshwater storage, the number of people onboard, the power available, and how often you are running the generator.

Unless you are operating a commercial vessel that runs 24/7, you want to calculate your gallons per hour instead of per day to make sure you get the right watermaker—the first time.

Of course, having a marine watermaker isn’t just about being able to use more water onboard. You become dockside independent, which is especially important during the pandemic as the ability to dock in many locations has been reduced. Having a watermaker onboard, you can save money with no more slip fees and water charges and enjoy freshwater with the touch of a button!

Water output isn’t the only consideration when shopping for a reliable quality watermaker.

What you need to look at when shopping for a watermaker:

-The open frame or modular configuration

-High-grade materials

-Nonproprietary parts

-Low RPM components

-Necessary parts and features are included

-Customized operation

-Automatic alerts and data

-Solid warranty coverage

Our watermaker experts are ready to answer any questions you have to ensure you find the right FCI Watermaker. Consult with us today!