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 > Cleaning Black water tank

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catkins

Western Washington

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Posted: 06/11/14 06:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Water, water, and water. I never use chemicals except in very warm areas where we sit for a while or are storing it. Kind of like putting perfume on a pig............... chemicals left on for a long time likely do help but not much for a weekend.

Always dump when at least 2/3 full, even if that means ADDING water before you dump. Use a tank sprayer if you have one and if not, get a wand sprayer and use it a couple of times a year if you feel compelled. With enough water, almost all solids will be pulled out of the tank.

Always keep at least 2 gallons of water in your tank (for a large tank) to keep any residue from drying and turning into a concrete like disaster. Emptying occasionally upon arrival also means all has been well sloshed around and ready to exit.

This is one of the joys of RVing but it really is not rocket science. It is a holding tank, not a septic tank. Do NOT use Drano or any other harsh chemical as it can cause damage. Happy camping!

xctraveler

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Posted: 06/11/14 07:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

AS you can see there are plenty of variations on the theme, but the consensus is to avoid ANY harsh chemicals, bad for your system and bad for the campground septic system, potentially bad for you too if you have a spill.

As a group we range from the super clean systems to the just get rid of the black water. Both seem to work for different people. The real key is to not let it dry out. As for the gauges, they either work or they don't. When they don't, even the most serious cleaning may not fix them for more than one or two tankfuls. We learned early on just how long we could go on the tanks under different conditions and made notes as to when they were dumped last - post-its in by the gauges.

I have been in the just get rid of the poo camp for 14 years in three different coaches and have never had odor problems or other difficulties with the holding tanks.

We use a macerator system which means we do not get the "rush" of water when dumping the tanks, just a steady flow as the motor grinds and pumps the effluent. WE have a need to reach a dump that is over 100 feet from the coach and slightly uphill when visiting family, otherwise I would not have spent the bucks. Having spent them I enjoy the small hose and general lack of exposure to the effluent.


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Busskipper

Arnold,Md/Superior, CO

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Posted: 06/11/14 08:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

gbopp wrote:

The Geo Method


This is one of the best items I have learned from on this site! It works and if used regularly eliminates almost all problems.

JMHO,


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mtrumpet

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Posted: 06/11/14 11:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Every time we empty the tanks, we then add Liquid Calgon Water Softener mixed into about three gallons of water into each the black and grey tanks. Every once in a while we'll do the bag-of-ice trick in the black tank. Been doing that for years and have not had any problems. Although, now that I've gone and said that...

* This post was edited 06/11/14 11:45am by mtrumpet *


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cKarlGo

Alexandria, VA

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Posted: 06/11/14 11:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

An motorhome may be a house on wheels, but it is not a house. There are good reasons for not using household products on your coach.


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k.
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south

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Posted: 06/11/14 01:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Effy wrote:

I installed a hatch on mine through the floor and crawl in to scrub it out by hand.


Yer eyeballs are floating. [emoticon]
Let me know where you camp. You can clean mine.

TechWriter

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Posted: 06/11/14 02:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

cKarlGo wrote:

An motorhome may be a house on wheels, but it is not a house. There are good reasons for not using household products on your coach.

As a rule, yes, but it depends on the chemicals. For example, I would not use Drano, but I do use bleach occasionally.


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msmith1199

Central, CA

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Posted: 06/11/14 02:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I used to just flush mine real good with water and fill it with fresh water and empty it a few times. All was fine until last year when I flush the toilet and the items in the toilet did not go down. What had happened is over the years a pile of TP and whatever else had built up in the tank and eventually clogged the toilet. I went to the local RV store and found a chemical that was made just for this very problem. Once I used a plunger to get the toilet to clear I dumped in the chemical and added more fresh water and drove it around to slosh it around. Then per the instructions I let it sit for a couple of weeks and then flushed it out. I have a clear fitting at my drain pipe and it sure looked like a lot of stuff came out. It took it about 8 years to get to that point, so now once I year I'll just use the same chemical and go through the same process and make sure it doesn't build up again like that.


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Monaco Montclair

Virginia

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Posted: 06/11/14 02:36pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We do the ice thing, just before we make our last stop.then do the dump thing.does a good job of cleaning the black tank. And don't hurt a thing.saves the big bucks on chem.now it's all happy-camping

Monaco Montclair

Virginia

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Posted: 06/11/14 02:39pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Never use that stuff, ever, just the ice thing, works for us. Now it's all happy-camping

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