10 Best Bilge Pumps: Buyer’s Guide & Reviews
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No matter how well designed your boat or kayak is, it's not uncommon for water to find its way into the cockpit and storage areas. If left unattended to, the water can significantly damage your watercraft and affect your safety. Therefore, investing in a bilge pump is no longer something one can overlook. And while we all hope that we don't end up needing it, this kind of pump is a must-have for emergency purposes.
Some common types of bilge pumps include the integral automatic switches, separate float switches, and electronic water-sensing switches. Basically, electric switches are pretty popular as they can automatically sense spillages and splashes. So, whether you're looking for convenience or functionality, you're definitely bound to be spoilt for choice. And to make the deal even sweeter for you, we have the latest run-down of the top bilge pumps on the markets currently.
A bilge pump can end up being your last resort safety equipment at the hour of need. The following comparison chart will come in handy in helping you make a safe bet.
6.5 x 3.27 x 4.13 inches
Seaflo 2000 GPH 12v
6.4 x 5.2 x 4.5 inches
8.2 x 5.7 x 3.4 inches
Attwood 4606-7 Tsunami
6.1 x 8.1 x 7.8 inches
Seattle Sports Paddlers
21 x 1.75 inches
Attwood Sahara S1100
7.4 x 10.9 x 8.6 inches
3.5 x 6 x 7.5 inches
Rule 10 Marine
5.2 x 6 x 4.5 inches
AURELIO TECH 12V
4.5 x 3.5 inches
10 Best Bilge Pumps Reviewed
The Seaflo-Automatic 750GPH pump is one of the few pumps that balance functionality with practicality. For instance, besides packing a huge flow rate, it also features a built-in sensor switch. This switch is automatically activated when the water levels rise. And thanks to its generous flow rate, you can count on it to drain out the water fast and efficiently.
Besides the well thought out mechanism, the Seaflo is pretty durable. A closer look at its components reveals that they're made of high-quality, rust and corrosion resistant stainless-steel parts. It's housing is also pretty well-made as it comes with a tough plastic which is capable of withstanding all kinds of torture.
In addition, it is energy saving, because power is only used when water levels rise. That’s when the internal float switch activates the pump. The unit has an ignition mechanism to protect it against high currents.
- Flow capacity: 2000 Gallons per hour (...
- Heavy duty motors with stainless steel...
- Totally submersible and ignition...
- To all existing safety standards ( CE,...
Seaflo-2000 works fast in removing accumulated water. It comes with a heavy-duty motor, a stainless steel shaft, and an impact resistant housing. The unit is totally submersible and ignition protected. It has moisture tight seals and anti-airlock systems. In addition, it has a water cooled motor design for long life.
The heavy-duty motor provides more power than the 1100 series models. It uses 12 volts of power. It is designed for easy installation and removal. Besides that, it works silently without vibration.
3. Shoreline Marine-Water
- The Shoreline Marine 600 GPH bilge pump...
- This universal mounting base is designed...
- The bilge pump is fully submersible with...
- The ¾” O.D. outlet hose barb is...
Shoreline Marine is a manual pump that works very fast like a garden hose. It is submersible and sucks everything. In addition, it is quite easy to install. However, it is not automatic, and it needs to be turned on when the water level gets too high, to pump water out.
It is universal and can run in a manual or battery boat system. It is also a quite affordable pump. There are three models to choose from, namely 600GPH,800GPH and 1100GPH. The price depends on the line you choose. A purchase includes stainless steel hardware and a mounting bracket
4. Attwood Tsunami Manual
- Innovative engineering and compact...
- Powerful and reliable pump is rated for...
- Features premium-quality bearings and...
- Patented shaft seal prevents leaks...
The Attwood Tsunami is a great pump if you know how to maintain units. It is easy to repair and service this unit to give you many years of service. The water pump uses a double filter base, which resists clogging.
It is a manual pump that uses 12 volts. The units are designed to pump fast and efficiently. The pump is easy to maintain because it uses replacement cartilages and interchangeable motor cores. There are three models to choose from, 500, 800 and 1200GPH with 1200 GPH being the most powerful unit.
5. Seattle Sports-Paddlers
- Ergonomic - comfortable, easy-grip...
- Visible - high visibility neon yellow...
- Floating - foam collar adds buoyancy in...
- Manual pump - sucks water with a pull...
Seattle Sports-Paddlers is manually operated by hand pumping and is designed for small vessels, like a kayak. It works really fast and clears any floods in a small vessel.
It comes with an easy to grip handle. In addition, it is light and therefore very portable and quite easy to store it. It is also quite hard to lose it while out in the waters because it floats on water and it has a bright color for easy visibility. Unfortunately, attaching it to a hose makes the pumping task more daunting, and the unit less portable.
6. Attwood-Sahara Automatic
- Reliably provides bilge water pumping...
- Meets automatic switch pump requirements...
- High capacity for larger boats and...
- Compact and durable package includes...
The Attwood-Sahara is an automatic pump that starts pumping when water gets into it to clear out all the waters quickly. It works with 12 volts of power. It has a stainless steel shaft and a permanent magnet motor for durability.
The order comes with 16-gauge tinned copper wire of 36” for easy installation in your electric components. You have a choice of three models to choose from, depending on the power your boat needs, namely, 500, 750 and 1100 GPH.
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7. Rule-25D Submersible
- More pumping capacity and more exclusive...
- 3/4'' (19mm) discharge outlet hose barb...
- Silent and vibrationless operation
- Compact, efficient, long-life motors,...
Rule-25D is a submersible manual pump that works silently without any vibration. It pumps 500GPH with 12 volts of power. It is made to last, and the unit comes with a three-year warranty backing from its manufacturer. The motor is efficient and compact, and the shaft is stainless steel, rust and corrosion resistant. The snap-lock strainer makes it easy to install in your boat. The unit has ignition protection. In addition, it can run dry for short periods without getting spoilt.
8. SeaSense-Hand Pump
SeaSense-Hand Pump comes with a detachable hose and an easy to grip handle for easy use. It is ideal for use in runabouts, canoes, kayaks and other small vessels. It pumps very fast and accesses hard to reach areas. There are five sizes to choose from to suit your needs.
Although hand pipes can be quite difficult to operate, they come in handy especially when there is a heavy downpour or other emergency water getting into a small vessel. You can fix any leakage in the outflow pump, easily using a quality tape.
9. Rule-Marine Non-Automatic
Rule-Marine 2000 is a non-automatic pump activated by a switch, designed for big boats. There are three models to choose from, with different voltages, 12, 24 and 32 volts. The unit works with a 1-1/8 inch hose barb discharge. It is smaller in size compared to other 2000GPH brands, and therefore easier to install.
It is a durable product that comes with a three-year manufacturer’s warranty. The pump can run dry without getting damaged. It is quite easy to maintain it. The motor cartridge can be removed to clean the pump and remove any clogs.
10. Aurelio Tech
- ⛵Strong and Long-life Motor - The high...
- ⛵Waterproof Material and Safety...
- ⛵Wide Application - Our bilge pump can...
- ⛵Quick to Install - With the compact...
Aurelio Tech-1100GPH is a budget-friendly non-automatic submersible pump. The unit can be used in fishing boats, fountains, runabouts, aquariums among other water systems.
It is a quite easy to install pump, thanks to its universal mounting hole system. The unit is made from corrosion-resistant materials and has a strong motor to give you a long lasting unit. In addition, the sensitive components are insulated from water and the pump casing is made of ABS. Maintaining the pump is easy, it is easily cleaned to remove clogs in the unit.
The Bilge Pump Buying Guide
Much as this is an important accessory, you want to be sure that you only work with the best there is. That's precisely what this guide is meant to help you do - find the best pump for your needs.
Normally, the bigger your pump is, in terms of capacity, the better. A big pump will, no doubt, be in a position to lift the water to a greater height. What's more? It should be able to help you drain the water as fast as possible.
While it's recommended to have a professional install it for you, finding one that's easy to install can be a major plus. Most importantly, the pump should be installed in a position that's easily accessible. That way, you can have an easier time removing the debris and cleaning its intake at all time.
The Flow Rate
Basically, the higher the flow rate, the more effective a bilge pump is likely to be especially during emergencies. If you own a small boat and typically tour rivers and small lakes, a 600 GPH pump would suffice. However, if you like visiting choppy waters and oceans, it's important to get a 2000GPH or thereabouts.
Usable in Saltwater Usability
It goes without saying that you need to use a pump that's well-made. Ideally, it should come with non-corrosive parts especially if you tend to tour saltwater surfaces frequently. Ideally, it should have stainless steel shafts.
The Ability To Operate Quietly
Because these pumps are motor-powered, some of them tend to be extraordinarily noisy when in use. If you value quietness, make sure the bilge pump you opt for is capable of delivering a vibrationless and silent operation.
Some water leaks may occur even without you knowing it. And in that case, it makes perfect sense to have an automated, electric pump. Such a pump should have an internal float which is automatically activated as the water level rises.
The following basic installation tips for bilge pumps will help you ensure that the entire system is properly set up. They include:
Which One Is The Best?
If you have a large capacity boat and typically frequent choppy waters and volatile oceans, we'd recommend the Seaflo 2000 GPH for you. It comes with heavy-duty motors and is capable of delivering a high capacity output.
Otherwise, if you're scouting for the best bilge pump for kayaking, we'd vouch for the Seaflo Automatic Submersible pump. With a 750GPH flow rate and a built-in float switch, this is, no doubt, a great pump for the price.
The perfect bilge pump doesn't exist. Different kinds of water environments mean that there's no one-size-fits-all system. And that's why you need to pick one that seems to meet your needs in line with your style of fishing.