Guzzler Foot-Operated Bilge Pumps

Several of Bosworth’s Guzzler foot pumps are ideally suited for use as onboard bilge pumps in kayaks. Attached to the bulkhead, the pump remains securely with the kayak, so that you never have to worry about retrieving a lost pump from the water.

Each of the pumps recommended below is manufactured from rugged but lightweight Delrin plastic, and weighs less than 2 lbs. Designed for efficiency, these foot-operated Guzzlers can transfer a quart of water every 5 strokes. Equipped with a lightweight spring, they are easy to operate from a sitting position.

The video links below show how some of our customers have mounted these Guzzlers in their kayaks as well as what it’s like to operate them. Additionally, you can read the Sea Kayaker magazine article Foot Powered Bilge Pump , to see details of how one user installed a Guzzler in his kayak. Click on the pump models below to see the different styles we offer, to view recommended configurations and to order online.

Product Videos

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Guzzler 0450D in NDK Kayak

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Guzzler Kayak Bilge Pump at Work (Hybrid)

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why do you recommend a lightweight spring for kayak pumps?
The reason is simply that it is easier to operate the lightweight spring pump from a sitting position. Our standard strength spring takes about 35 lbs/in of deflection, whereas the lightweight spring takes only 20 lbs/in of deflection. The standard weight spring is perfectly fine to operate from a standing position where a person’s full weight is available to compress the spring. When you are sitting in a kayak, though, you are using leg strength alone to compress the spring, and that is a lot easier to do with the lightweight spring. The kayak pump does not need much spring strength to fill the pump since there is at most about a foot of pump lift involved in drawing water up to the pump from the bottom of the kayak.
What is the best valve to use in my Guzzler Kayak bilge pump?
Bilge water in a kayak is a little cleaner that bilge water in other boats, but it can still have alot of sediment in it. We recommend the Duckbill Valve for use in kayak Guzzler foot pumps. It does the best job of passing water with some material in it, and is the least likely to be obstructed as a result of material lodging in the area around the valve.
Is it better to mount the pump horizontally or vertically?
The horizontal-handle pumps and the vertical-handle pumps are completely equivalent in functionality. Which you choose for your installation is entirely a matter of which style of pumping action (“back-and-forth” for the vertical handle and “up-and-down” for the horizontal handle) is convenient for your use. Additionally, if you equip your pump with duckbill valves, you can mount your pump vertically, which changes the sense of handle action as well.
What should I check if the pump stops working?
If your pump stops working, the first thing to check is whether there is a hole or tear in the diaphragm. If so, the diaphragm needs replacement. If there is no problem with the diaphragm, then check to see if the pump is able to create a vacuum to draw fluid up to it. Disconnect the inlet line and, with your hand directly covering the inlet flange, pull the handle up (or turn the motor on). You should feel a suction on your hand. If not, then remove the outlet flange (opposite the inlet), to inspect that the valve is operating properly and not obstructed by any material. Depending on the type of valve, material in the fluid that enters the pump may become lodged in the valve and prevent it from closing to make a tight seal against the flange. If this happens, then the pump will be unable to create a suction on the inlet side. After checking the inlet suction, disconnect the outlet hose and, with your hand covering the outlet flange, press down on the handle (or turn the motor on). You should feel exhaust pressure against your hand. If not, then make a similar inspection of the inlet valve.

If there is no material lodged in either valve, the valves may simply be old and no longer seating properly. If your pump is a “400” series pump equipped with flapper valves, a simple trick is to turn each valve around. Sometimes flapper valves can warp as they age and simply flipping the valve to change the side that seals against the flange allows the valve to operate properly again. (Note that you cannot do this trick with “500” flapper valves since they have a specific side that needs to face against the sealing flange.) If the pump is operating properly when disconnected from your hoses (i.e., if you feel the appropriate suction and exhaust pressure), then a next step is to check your inlet and outlet lines for any obstruction.

Bosworth Kayak Pumps