Hose, clamps, tubing - oh my! Marine hose is an unglamorous workhorse of any boat. You also get what you pay for. Because hose and tubing often go unseen, it’s hard to impress your friends by telling them how much you paid per foot. But, if you want your system to function safely, take the time to select and install the right hose.
Here’s a quick primer:
Bilge / Livewell Hose - Works with bilge pumps, as you would expect. If you can sacrifice flexibility, smooth-walled bilge hose is preferable for its durability. It also doesn’t attract fuel, dirt, and oil into the bilge.
Marine Water/Exhaust Hose - Ideal for connections to through-hulls under the waterline and for carrying hot exhaust gases and cooling water overboard.
Freshwater System Hose - A good general purpose hose for freshwater applications and raw water wash down systems. Look for FDA-approved when shopping for this type marine hose.
Fuel Hose - Look for a fuel rating referencing permeability. Because fuel is so combustible, we recommend you buy an A1-rated hose for both gasoline and diesel applications.
Sanitation Hose - Don’t sacrifice functionality for looks. While white sanitation hose looks cleaner when exposed, the thicker black rubber sanitation hose is engineered not to absorb effluent odors. It’s expensive but worth it in the long run.
Marine hose may not be as sexy as Eclipse fuel gauges or Faria Dress White and Euro gauge sets. But if you scrimp on it, you won’t be able to put a good face on the problems you created. Don’t be ‘penny wise and pound foolish’.
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