I got pumped!

Moving aboard raised a number of issues to resolve, including internet connectivity, laundry, mail and pump-out. For pump-out, we initially planned to use Bell Harbor Marina’s portable pump-out cart. You wheel the cart to the boat, pump out the boat into the cart, then wheel it back and pump the cart into the plumbed sewage pipe. The only problem was that the cart wasn’t working when we arrived, and it sounded like it might take a while before it was.

Bell Harbor does have a pump-out dock also. Our two 30-gallon holding tanks wouldn’t last 2 weeks, however, and moving the boat to the pump-out dock eash week wasn’t very appealing. One solution would have been to just use the marina’s well-maintained bathrooms to reduce our holding tank requirements. But we would have found that almost more hassle than moving the boat to the pump-out dock.

We searched online for a solution and came across PumpMeOut.com—a mobile pump-out service. We loved their website—in describing the various options for dealing with a full holding tank, one was “Stop at the pumpout station. (Everyone could use more practice docking.)” They work between Tacoma and Point Roberts, including the San Juan Islands, and will service boats in their slip or on the water. The prices looked great, and they had a live-aboard plan of unlimited pumpouts for $65/mo. They came out that day and have been servicing our boat ever since. The service has been professional, reliable and hassle-free. And we like their creativity and approach. After their first regular visit, we found a small gift of environmental toilet paper thanking us for their business.


The portable pump-out at Bell Harbor has long since been operational, but we’re much happier coming home to find the little removable tag on our railing announcing “I got pumped!”.


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