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Marina eWof requirements


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I have just received the latest Tosh from Westhaven about increased "electrical safety" requirements.

The upshot is, that unless you have an electrical warrant of Fitness, you will not be able to leave your dehumidifier and battery charger running while you are away. This is whether you have your lead tagged or not. Ewofs are not the same as lead testing. They are designed for boats that have a full AC system fitted and are hard wired. They also cover your DC system.

 

As per usual, the Marina operators association mention no electrical standards and do not mention who is qualified to issue an eWof or what tests are involved. They also say that they themselves have no idea about electrickery, therefore putting themselves outside the loop of any discussion. That's handy!

 

The pretty brochure is attached.

 

I suggest the Marina Operator's association familiarises themselves with AS/NZS 3004 to see what they are lumbering their customers with and also to check whether any inspectors know what they are inspecting.. At a bare minimum I would expect any person inspecting the boat to have a copy of this documentation.

Everyone needs to be aware that to obtain a real Ewof, the boat's entire electrical systems, AC and DC require to be inspected, and all metal parts need to be bonded to the boat's earth with a resistance of less than 0.5 Ohms.

 

This is a real pain in the arse and if done correctly, will cost $$$$. I am also not sure that I want an MEN system on my boat, as it is not always the best idea. I will also have to do some reading about galvanic action created by connecting my boat's earth to the marina, and therefore every other boat in the marina. Any stray earth leakage currents created by these other vessels will end up sitting in my keel and rig and looking for a path to earth if for any reason the marina's earth is disrupted. I don't like that much.

 

Might be a good market for Galvanic isolators in the near future!

 

I will be interested to hear from Westhaven as to what calamitous events involving shore power have brought about this change in marina regulations..

 

Shore_Power.pdf

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I have looked into this myself quite a bit. It is unclear in the regs exactly what permanent connection is. A boat by it very nature is a "Temporary" connection.

 

No one really knows what is required on a boat, and every "expert" I talk to about it has a different story, although often only slightly.

 

Some say testing the DC install is all that is required. Some say that screwing the ebox to the wall and installing a proper 16a plug/socket on the boat is all that is needed and you can have an ewof.

 

It's a real PITA if the 12v systems are required to be inspected  as well, there is a real shortage of competent people let alone certified, that understand the electrical side AND the potential consequences re galvanic corrosion.

 

If the 12v side is to be enforced, they are basically making it impossible to plug in to shore power.  :roll:

 

Finally there has not been a single incidence in NZ that I can find that any of this would have prevented. More bureaucratic nonsense.

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I went through this a couple of years ago and elected to go down the eWOF route with attached cord as I figured that they would change the rules a few times and go down this route anyways, given nobody knew what they were requiring.

 

Gavin at Marine Electrics did a pretty good job.

 

But what a complete pain in the arse.

Had to coil up the attached lead and stow on the boat, which cruising was a pain in the arse as it took room, and racing it was a pain in the arse as it got wet a couple of times when racing in some seriously heavy sh*t....salt just loves this kind of sh*t...

 

I then started burning through anodes at an alarming rate, which meant replacing, and that was a complete pain in the arse....So then had to add an anode to the engine and dangle over the side, which was also a pain in the arse as I then had to stow it with the engine...

 

Can understand if was for boats that plug everything in, but for just a dehumidifer I think its overkill.

 

Guess you could coil it next to the hose you now need to carry as these arent dock supplied anymore as well.....

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Why not just rely on your 12V system and solar to maintain it so you can run your equipment without shorepower.

 

 

Dehumidification is easy to do yourself:  simply run a hose below your boat but above the low tide mark to draw water through a coil of copper tubing, pumped with a 12V pump slowly.  Run a 12V fan to blow air through the coil and drain the condensed water into a bilge to be pumped out by your bilge pump.  The whole system uses a LOT less energy than a commercially availble dehumidifier, and it will only function when it will do any good: when the air temperature is above the dew point - when the sun is shining.

 

 

If you don't have a solar system to charge your batteries...well, get one.

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The electrical inspector from Warkworth checking boats at Sandspit has been getting stuck in on the DC side, I know of a couple of people who had to change wet batteries to sealed  ones due their not complying with the ventilation requirements.

Galvanic isolators help to maintain isolation from other boats or marina leakage, but they can fail periodically and with most you only know if you test them. Only sure way for protection/isolation is an isolating transformer, either traditional windings type or an electronic type such as

http://www.enertecmarinesystems.com/product/mastervolt-gi-3-5/

 

might be an interesting question to ask your respective marina to provide their own certificate of compliance to ANZS3004 part 1.

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Yep, I just confirmed with them that I am not allowed to use my expensive ebox anymore.... well I can use it if I am on the boat but I can't leave it.

This is rediculous. Did the explain why? As in, what trouble it may cause?

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I called up Beacon (they were very helpful) and to get an ewof for Deeds I need to have the boat out of the water to fit an through hull (both hulls?!) earthing strap, fit a 240v plug, shore power plug and fitted ebox thingy.. 

 

As I am on the boat a lot I'll just leave the shore power lead ready to plug in when I am down there.

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This is rediculous. Did the explain why? As in, what trouble it may cause?

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Hi Craig

Like nearly all marinas in New Zealand, Westhaven Marina now requires that customers comply with WorkSafe standards with regards to marina electrical connections. 

 

There are generally two ways that you may connect:

1.     You may connect to shore power temporarily at Westhaven using an eBox with current tag and test. A responsible adult must be on board while the boat is connected. 

2.     If you wish to connect your vessel's AC system to shore power and leave your vessel unattended, you will require an EWoF (Electrical Warrant of Fitness).

These are detailed in a leaflet produced by the New Zealand Marina Operators Association which you can download here

 

Westhaven will expect all connections to conform with the standards as described in this leaflet by Easter 2017 in order to continue to provide your berth with power.

 

There are a number of electrical service providers that can help install a shore power system for you, and provide you with an EWoF. A list of these is in our contractor’s directory.

 

This leaflet can always be accessed from our website - click ‘Using the Marina’  and then select ‘Your Berth’ 

 

We appreciate these standards are more strict than those previously advised and will require changes on some boats and that some of these may be inconvenient. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

 

The Westhaven Team

 

 

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This is rediculous. Did the explain why? As in, what trouble it may cause?

New rules... must admit I thought the ebox was the way to go for small boats as they are very safe.

Mine is a Jackson one that they use on building sites ... unattended building sites too ... not sure how that works if our rules are the same as theirs. 

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I then started burning through anodes at an alarming rate, which meant replacing, and that was a complete pain in the arse....So then had to add an anode to the engine and dangle over the side, which was also a pain in the arse as I then had to stow it with the engine...

 

Can understand if was for boats that plug everything in, but for just a dehumidifer I think its overkill.

 

Guess you could coil it next to the hose you now need to carry as these arent dock supplied anymore as well.....

My fears exactly (anodes). What I would really like to know is WHY? For a hard wired 240Vac system, I completely understand, but for a DC system with an extension lead for a dehumidifier and battery charger????

I would also like to see some standards quoted, ie "conforms to NZS XXXX" and also What the eWof tests entail. I would also want the tester to have a copy of the standard (I do) and tell me exactly what he is going to test and why.

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If you are considering being wired up permanently I would have thought a galvanic isolator is a must, to protect you first and the marina second, not sure why beacon want earth straps through the hull of a light multi though?

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I thought the marina connection had a residual current device in it?  In any event the box we now have to have does have a residual current device.  It is in many respects a safer connection than most houses in NZ which a suitable to be connected 24 hours per day!

 

 Mine is running my battery charger and I have always taken some comfort from the thought that the connection could keep the bilge pumps running should anything happen in the marina.  Funny as I was just looking at a flexible solar panel in the weekend, maybe that will be a purchase soon.

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Our boat just has a caravan plug with lead connected to a MCB breaker box and a power point for the battery charger and dehumidifier. No flash earthing required and it has a ewof. Everything is double insulated so no galvanic corrosion issues as far as i'm aware. I'm not sure why it would need to get more complicated than that for 90% of nz yachties?

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AC and DC. I have said this at Day one and no body believed me. In fact the inspector here has actually been telling people that they are not interested in inspecting DC system. Right from day one of that Reg coming out, I said the DC system MUST be inspected and there MUST be a Bronze earthing plate fitted to the bottom of the Hull and seeing as no one has one, no one would comply. And if you don't comply and something happens to your Boat, I would really be worried about the Insurance company wriggling out...as we all know they try very hard at these days. So all I could see was a possible major problem developing.
Plus these earth plates are damn expensive. They are a special Cintered Bronze Plate and I bet there will be many Racers not wanting one bolted to the Hull.
Once you go down this route, you have to have a perfectly installed system. Everything MUST be bonded and bonded correctly. If you have a properly installed system, you will not have issues with Anodes going any faster. That means something is wrong somewhere. And that is the issue. One problem somewhere and you have one big problem that eats anodes.

There are two schools of thought with Bonding. To bond everything, or bond nothing. Neither are wrong or right, just different views. For us who use plastic through hull fittings, there is not a lot left that is not protected by the anodes we fit. Where as a commercial vessel  has to use Bronze through Hull fittings and if the vessel hull is timber, then bonding them was the usual method. Glass Hulls are not so critical and isolated is just as acceptable.

To help with understanding the regs. First off, an eWOF is required for any installed electrical system. Installed means if you have any wiring permanently installed into the Boat.This is NOT a flexible extension Cable.
If you have an extension cable, you are, or had been, allowed to have one appliance plugged into it. Such as a battery charger. That Lead must be tested and tagged every 12months. However, the Marina themselves may have their own rule as to whether extension leads are allowed.
Dehumidifiers have caused fires in the past and I know the Marina here did voice at one stage about not being allowed to use them unattended. But I am not sure if anything ever became of that.
 

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Our boat just has a caravan plug with lead connected to a MCB breaker box and a power point for the battery charger and dehumidifier. No flash earthing required and it has a ewof. Everything is double insulated so no galvanic corrosion issues as far as i'm aware. I'm not sure why it would need to get more complicated than that for 90% of nz yachties?

Yes, this is where it gets murky. This ewof you have CANNOT be to NZS 3004 which is the appropriate electrical standard. The boat has to be earthed. I would like to talk to your Sparky!! Sounds like a great solution as that is the same set up as the Marshall, except I have a combo RCD/MCB. Would you care to PM me his details? Thanks.

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