Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

Discussion in 'Beginning RVing' started by minky, Aug 21, 2007.

  1. minky

    minky New Member

    Years ago I had a pop-up and have been through the gray water container and toilet cartridges. But recently, I bought a 1992 Prowler 19E trailer with the typical sink, shower, and toilet. My question is about sewage and the holding tank. When I camp this coming weekend, do I need a sewer hook-up or can I use the dump station on the way out? We're going to stay only 3 or 4 nights and will probably use the campground's facilities most of the time. There will be 2 or 4 of us. Please advise
     
  2. Kali_Mist

    Kali_Mist New Member

    RE: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    What ever you do dont due what most people do, dont leave the dump valves open at the campground, the fluids run out and the solids stay in the tank and that causes big problems.
    besides that just get some holding tank treatment to add to your black tank then dump when you leave, most black tank will holdf at least 10gl. Cheers
     
  3. C Nash

    C Nash Senior Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    Knowing the size of your tank or tanks would help. If you do a lot of cooking and dish washing the gray tank will fill pretty quick.
     
  4. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    I agree with Chelse,, the gray will fill up faster than the blk ,,but what ever u do don't leave the valves open at the campsight sewer hookup ,, u will get fumes back in the rv,, via the sewer hook up ,, if u prefer to let the blk tank go till u can go to the dumpsights ,, thats ok ,, but please rember to use lottsa water in the blk tank ,, u don't want a dried out poo poo tee pee :)
     
  5. minky

    minky New Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    Thanks for the tips, guys. When rinsing out the tank, I assume that I'm to use that "water wand" to enter the valve from the outside. Is that right? (Might sound basic, but I don't want to make a mistake in this category.)
     
  6. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    The best and easiest way to rinse a black tank is a built in flush system (which you can add to an existing tank). The wand down the toilet is the second most effective way, but boy is it a pain to use. Under no circumstances shove that wand into the dump port; the BEST scenario will get 'stuff' all over you, and more importantly, all over where you are located. The worst scenaro could add damage to the RV.

    There are devices you can add on to the dump port to 'backflush' the system and send the results down the hose; not as effective as flush or wand, but pretty easy to use. Make sure you have a clear section (the backflush devices are almost always clear) in your dump 'circuit' so you can monitor what is going on and tell when you are really 'clean'.
     
  7. minky

    minky New Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    Thanks, John. I assume that I need to get a hose to connect to the holding tank to dump. I'm going to check my camper utility box to see if one was included. (The key is broken, which is another story.) Are you saying that part of the hose should be clear?

    I sure hope that the there are some friendly people at the campground we go to. :laugh: What do you think, a case of beer in exchange for a quick orientation from a neighbor?
     
  8. C Nash

    C Nash Senior Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    Yes you will need a sewage hose to use when dumpingor hooking up to sewage at camp site. You will also need a seal at most CG sites when hooking into the sewage. You can find the clear sewage connectors at rv parts dept or Wally world. If you decide to use the dump station be sure to fill the tanks full before you leave the campsite or for that matter fill them even if you are full hookup at the camp site. DON"T FORGET TO USE GLOVES when handling the sewage. Fellow rvers will be glad to show you. Might not want to handle the chore :eek: since most don't even like to handle their own poop :) . Just remember use plenty of water and dump the black first and then the gray last.
     
  9. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    What you have is a 3" pipe sticking out, with bayonet lugs, and 1 valve (which slides open) for each tank. Usually 1 gray for sinks and shower and 1 black for the toilet. The dump station will be a pipe in the ground. So, you need a leakproof connection from that 3" pipe on the RV to the pipe in the ground (which may be any of many sizes).

    To transport the stuff from the trailer to the dump site, you will need a hose. Usually 10' is enough, but it is good to have a second 10' section just in case the site layout is really strange. You want the very best hose you can get, as the thinner the hose material, the sooner it will leak 'stuff' over you and over the ground. If you got a hose 'free' with the trailer, it will probably be the crappiest available :) My favorite at the moment is the 'Rhino' hose. The 'blue' press fit system is not bad, and they have a new extra heavy duty hose which seems good.

    Next, you need to connect one end of the hose to your trailer. If the hose has a connector on the end, fine, otherwise you will need to get one and attach it to the hose. Then just press it on the pipe coming out of your trailer, and rotate until the ears of the connector lock on the lugs on the RV pipe. On the other end, you need to connect the hose to the pipe in the ground, which is made more difficult by there being so many different ones. A 'universal' elbow which screw into or fits snugly in most pipes is a good choice. Again, you may need to get a connector to attach the hose to the elbow. The 'blue' press fit universal elbow seems the most versatile, the Rhino elbow is not bad, and there is a new 'red' elbow which looks like it might be fairly good. If you have a second chunk of hose, make sure you have any connectors needed to connect the 2 hoses together.

    This is the minimum you need. The next step up is to insert a section of clear pipe between your RV and the hose. These can be 90 degree angles, 45 degree angles, or a straight pipe, depending on your layout. There are also ones which have a water hose connection which allows you to 'backflush' the tanks.

    To use a backflusher, hook up the sewer system, and hook a water hose to the backflusher. This must NOT be a drinking water hose, so a color other than white is best. (and don't use any color hose for drinking water except white, drinking water certified hoses, as most 'garden' hoses are made with harmful chemicals) And it MUST have an anti-backflow valve to keep the crap (literally) from getting back into the drinking water. Plastic is cheap, but breaks easily. So I have a plastic one on the flusher end and a good brass one on the other end of the hose. Yes, I am anal.

    To flush, make sure both the gray and black tanks are at least 1/2 full. Open the valve for the black tank and watch in horrid facination at the stuff coming through that clear section of pipe. When the flow stops, turn on the water into the backflusher for a period of time which you figure out by trial and error. 90 seconds seems to work for me, just make sure that your tank does not fill more than say 1/4. Let it drain out. Repeat until what comes out is clear and has minimal 'chunks' in it. Close the black valve and open the gray valve. This will rinse out the system and your hose. You can backflush the gray tank, but it is not as important as it is with the black tank.

    If you want to use some other flushing system than the backflusher, let me know and I will provide some guidance. You can get by without any backflushing, but your tanks will not be their cleanest.
     
  10. minky

    minky New Member

  11. hertig

    hertig Senior Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    That is them. Which one to get depends on which hose you get and the setup of your dump pipe. For instance, at that link, the first one is for a hose which has a fitting on the end, the second is for a hose with no fitting (needs a hose clamp to keep the hose from slipping off at the worst time), and the third looks like it might be for the 'red' sewer hose with no fitting (they spiral theirs 'backwards' so only their parts work with their hose). Or it might be for all the other hoses, in which case it would probably be 'better' (ie prettier and easier to use) than the second one.

    45 degrees is a good all purpose fitting, although 90 degrees or 0 degrees (straight) fittings do have some uses in cramped situations.
     
  12. DL Rupper

    DL Rupper Senior Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    Get a box of disposable gloves to handle the sewer hoses and connections. Then carefully take them off and dispose of them. :laugh:
     
  13. minky

    minky New Member

    RE: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    Thanks for the tips, guys. We came home from our first trip today and successfully used the dump station. Bought the Rhino hose and 90 degree clear pipe. We also used disposable gloves -- good call.

    Other good news -- the AC and fridge work too. But, oh that roof.
     
  14. C Nash

    C Nash Senior Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    Well, you have mastered the "dirty" work. What is the problemwith the roof?
     
  15. minky

    minky New Member

    Re: Holding tank -- sewage, etc.

    I mentioned in another post that the roof was rotten. Figured that out after I bought it. Looks like I'm going to rip off the roof, replace beams if necessary, and put new plywood on. Then I plan on covering it with aluminum and rubberized paint.

    The lady I bought it from told me that it leaks a little, but that it can be patched with rubberized glue. Some parts of the roof are as soft as a sponge. The bathroom wall is all messed up too.
     

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