Macerating our way to happiness!

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

Smoky

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 11, 2005
Posts
3,589
Location
wherever we are parked
Well just 2 years ago was my introduction to the wonderful world of RVing.  Having fished and boated for 60 years (yes I began at an early age), I found RVing had much in common with boating. 

RVing travel was similar but less restricted, RV maintenance was important, but less demanding physically, fellowship was not only equal to boating, but better, and gadgetry was equal in both camps.  Not hard for a 60 something senior citizen to convert over.

Except....

I was astonished to see no maceration going on.  If I may speak bluntly, both liquid and solid objects were being dumped directly into a hole in the ground.  I thought this was strange, and possibly inefficient, but I adjusted quickly.

Since 2003 never gave any more thought about it... until I began shopping in earnest for our new motorhome.  One of the interesting motorhomes that made our "short" list was Monaco's Beaver Santiam.  As we toured through the home and then began opening bay doors, I suddenly saw something familiar when the utility bay was opened.  By God a macerator!

The salesman said they were a new option in 2005 on Monacos, but he had very little idea what they did or why they would be an attractive feature.  I walked away impressed.  Later, when I knew I was not going to buy a Beaver, I pretended to be still interested (naughty me) and inquired if I could install my own macerator on the early 2005 Beaver they had on the lot that was not macerized.  They said they would check, and later got back to me with the phone number of the company that was supplying them and a Xerox copy of the manual. (This was a very nice dealer in Virginia I must admit.)

When I read through the manual I realized I had stumbled on something very good.  One of the capabilities of this macerator is that it can pump sewage up 20 feet in elevation and up to 350 feet away.  The hoses are 3/4 inch small diameter accordion type expandable hoses.  They take up less than a quarter of the same length standard 3 inch gravity sewage hose.

The macerator itself just twists on to your black water outlet like a standard sewer hose.  Thus if for some reason you want to dump the normal way, you can just twist off the macerator and twist on the standard hose.  I thought I might do this when on the move at truck or highway dump stops, but the macerator is so easy to use I leave it attached at all times.  You do not even have to rinse hoses, as when you are done you simply twist on a hose cap and you have a "closed" system ready for use the next time.  However in campgrounds I go ahead and run my gray water after the black water and give it a rinse.  Makes me feel better.  ;D

There is also a gray water bypass for those who want there gray water constantly flowing.  I take advantage of this when we have our washer dryer running.


This setup seemed to me to be about perfect for a fulltimer.  In fact I later discovered that the Escapee web site has a full and often humorous ?white paper? on fulltiming and maceration.

At any rate, for me I was thinking they are compact, easy to use, and will get you to your host's house sewage tap even if it is a hundred feet away and uphill.  This is one of the reasons we have refused to use chemicals in our new holding tank and only use bacteria.  Keeps it septic tank friendly.

They are wired for 12 volts.  When I ordered my coach I had heavy duty 12 volts wiring supplied at the utility bay.  I self installed the Sani-con and it took 2 minutes.  The hard part is wiring the 12 volt outlet and Newmar did this for me.  I later changed what Newmar did, because it was a cigarette lighter style output, and it is hard to find the male connector for 25 amps.  I replaced the Newmar box with standard 110 volt receptacle, but wired the receptacle using the 12 volt wiring.  I just plug in when I am camped.  I like unplugging it when I travel.

You can extend hosing by simply adding 3/4" standard garden hoses.  Or buy more of those accordion extensions from RV Sani-Con, the company that manufactures all this.

I had a long conversation with the owner of Sani-con.  Interestingly, he stumbled on this just like I did.  Switched from boating to RVing and was astonished no manufacturer was providing maceration.  He made up one for himself using a standard Jabsco marine macerator.  Then when he camped, others would constantly come over and ooh and ah.  Sometimes they would bug him to make up another and sell it to them and he always said no but would show them what to do to make it themselves.  Then one day his wife said yes, and he was stuck making one.  He figured making ten was more efficient than making one and planned to take a fresh one with him for possible sale at each campground. 

He got orders for all ten at the next campground!

He has since refined the process many times.  Now he has contracts with Monaco and two other companies, and Newmar is doing some field tests.  In fact when I ordered my 12 volt utility bay circuit, Newmar asked me to report back in 6 months and give them feedback on the Sani-Con.

Attached are pictures of my own setup.

1.  Our utility bay.  Macerator is already set up and attached to sewer.  In this picture you cannot see the black accordion hose.  It is running out the port directly underneath the macerator.  You can see the unused 20 foot standard 3 inch hose on stored and inactive on the left.  At some point we are going to ditch this hose and only keep the 10 foot standard hose which rides in the out of sight little hose compartment provided by Newmar.

2.  Closeup of macerator.

3.  Bay door area showing black accordion hose coming out below the bay along with fresh water hose.

4.  Utility path shown for fresh water (white hose), waste water (black accordion hose), and power, black power cord.  Note how unobtrusive the accordion hose is.  Makes everything look more tidy behind the coach.

5.  The sewage hookup.

Wondering if anyone else here is using maceration, and if so, home-brew or manufactured?
 

Attachments

  • Gettysburg 013 (Small).JPG
    Gettysburg 013 (Small).JPG
    36.9 KB · Views: 101
  • Gettysburg 012 (Small).JPG
    Gettysburg 012 (Small).JPG
    46.8 KB · Views: 79
  • Gettysburg 014 (Small).JPG
    Gettysburg 014 (Small).JPG
    60.8 KB · Views: 80
  • Gettysburg 015 (Small).JPG
    Gettysburg 015 (Small).JPG
    59.6 KB · Views: 74
  • Gettysburg 017 (Small).JPG
    Gettysburg 017 (Small).JPG
    69.7 KB · Views: 79

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
72,175
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
Macerators for RVs are not a new thing, Smoky. RV Sanicon has been makingcomplete macerator systems for RVs  for quite awhile and I believe are now the supplier for several Monaco Corp brands.  There are also macerators  from pump manufacturers Jabsco and Flojet and also from RV/marine toilet manufacturer Sealand, to name a few.

I like the RV Sanicon system myself and it is on my wish list.  On the other hand, it is  a "nice to have" rather than a "must".  Dumping "stuff" into a hole in the ground is not a problem - something like 40% of the homes in the USA do it every day. Septic systems may not be high tech, but they are simple, effective and nataural.
 

Smoky

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 11, 2005
Posts
3,589
Location
wherever we are parked
Right Gary, they are not real new but they are fairly new.? Sani-con has only been in business about 8 years according to the boss.? And it is only in the last 2 years he snared contracts with the MH manufacturers.

I agree there has been spotty usage by individuals for years and years.? The Sani-con guy is typical of that in piecing together his own system for his own use.? Fulltimers have done that for more than 25 years.

But I think popular usage is down the road a piece.

And yes the gravity system works fine.? I was just surprised to see the difference between the boating industry and the RV industry, being new to RVing an an old hand in boating.? Every boat on the water with a head has a macerator, and that is a ton of boats!!? ;D
 

Smoky

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 11, 2005
Posts
3,589
Location
wherever we are parked
p.s.

Make that a built in head not a portapotty.

There are some very old boats on the water with pump out only holding tanks, but they have not made them that way for years.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,128
Smoky said:
There are some very old boats on the water with pump out only holding tanks, but they have not made them that way for years.

Really?
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,128
Smoky

Camping World sells something similar which I use on our coach to dump when we get home. The CW unit is sold in a case, so it can be stowed when not in use. I'd have permanently mounted mine, but there's not enough room to do that without some plumbing mods. So I just screw it onto the dump fitting when I need it. I ran heavy duty wires to provide 12V to that bay, semi-permnanetly mounted the switch, and just plug the pump into the new 12V supply.

P.S. just remembered that the CW macerator requires a water supply, whereas the macerators I've used on boats didn't. Smok, does yours require the separate water supply?
 

Ned

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Posts
25,107
Location
USA
Tom,

The web site for the Sani-Con is http://www.emptythetanks.com/.  Lots of information there about the different models.  Although one can buy a lot of sewer hoses for the $550 price, it does make up in convenience.

It doesn't appear to require a water supply for operation and one very nice feature is the gray water bypass.

It's on my "thinking about" list :)
 

Ron

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Jan 29, 2005
Posts
18,082
Location
Home is where we park it
Vry good report on SaniCon Smoky.  Thanks for sharing with us.  IMHO the Electric macerator pump is the best way to go.  I have seen the CW pumps that require water to operate and was never favorably impressed. 

 

thenosyone

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 4, 2005
Posts
50
Hi,

just nosy,
how long does it take to empty the black tank with the macerator, compared to gravity?
 

Jackliz

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 4, 2005
Posts
1,287
Location
Hondo, TX
Howdy, Smokey.

Thanks for the most informative message.  I wonder how this system would work handling 100 gallons of black water. Hmmm.

Regards,
Liz  ;D  ;D
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,128
Thanks for the link Ned. Looks just like the macerators I've used/installed on boats.
 

Terry A. Brewer

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 4, 2005
Posts
1,445
Smoky

I have a macerator but use it only when I can't get near a regular dump. The reason?? it doesn't have the flushing action of the 3" hose & will leave solids & paper build up in your tank. If you want to prove this to yourself dump with your macerator, then fill your black water tank with water & empty with the 3" hose & you will be amazed at the c**p that comes out.

Terry
At Clark Fork, ID
 

thenosyone

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 4, 2005
Posts
50
Terry A. Brewer said:
Smoky

I have a macerator but use it only when I can't get near a regular dump. The reason?? it doesn't have the flushing action of the 3" hose & will leave solids & paper build up in your tank. If you want to prove this to yourself dump with your macerator, then fill your black water tank with water & empty with the 3" hose & you will be amazed at the c**p that comes out.

Terry
At Clark Fork, ID

Thanks Terry, you answered my question before I could ask.
Had the idea you needed the flushing action to empty the tank normally. Thats why I asked previously about the time difference between gravity and macerator dump

thenosyone
 

Bob Zambenini

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 4, 2005
Posts
270
Location
Orange County California
Ron said:
Vry good report on SaniCon Smoky.  Thanks for sharing with us.  IMHO the Electric macerator pump is the best way to go.  I have seen the CW pumps that require water to operate and was never favorably impressed. 

I have a good friend who I  RV with a lot and he has used the water operated pump from CW for over two  years. He says he has never had a case where the water pressure was too low to operate. He said if he ever did run into that situation he would remove the pump and do  it the old fashioned way.

Bob
 

Ned

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Posts
25,107
Location
USA
Terry A. Brewer said:
it doesn't have the flushing action of the 3" hose & will leave solids & paper build up in your tank.

Wouldn't the back flush work to solve that?  Turn off the macerator, close the drain valve, back flush, open the drain valve, start the macerator.  Repeat as necessary.  I generally back flush my black tank several times when draining to avoid just such a buildup.
 

Terry A. Brewer

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 4, 2005
Posts
1,445
Ned

>>Wouldn't the back flush work to solve that? <<


It will help, but it doesn't have that great? initial flushing action? of the 3" hose. I also have built in tank flushers & use them after every dump to remove what the initial dump leaves...but it is nothing like what is left when you use the macerator with it slow volume of removal.


Terry
At Clark Fork, ID
 

Ned

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Posts
25,107
Location
USA
Terry,

Good point.  That initial whoosh factor :)
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,128
Bob Zambenini said:
he has used the water operated pump from CW for over two years.

Bob, CW sells two versions - one that uses only water (venturi action) and the other is an electrical pump with water applied from a garden hose. Which vserion does your friend have?
 

caltex

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 14, 2005
Posts
731
Location
North Texas/Northern California
Smokey, Tom didn't point this out but his boat has a pump out only holding tank (and it's not that old).  Most of the boats sold in California seem to have a pump only tank now, they don't want any sewage going into the water.  Maybe you were referring to the old manual pump direct discharge head being replaced by a push button macerator?

I also carry a twist on macerator for those times when it is needed (like at home).  It has two disavantages, it's slower than the regular dump, and it's harder to get the tank clean through a macerator.

Robert
 

blueblood

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 16, 2005
Posts
1,082
Tom said:
Smoky

Camping World sells something similar which I use on our coach to dump when we get home. The CW unit is sold in a case, so it can be stowed when not in use. I'd have permanently mounted mine, but there's not enough room to do that without some plumbing mods. So I just screw it onto the dump fitting when I need it. I ran heavy duty wires to provide 12V to that bay, semi-permnanetly mounted the switch, and just plug the pump into the new 12V supply.

P.S. just remembered that the CW macerator requires a water supply, whereas the macerators I've used on boats didn't. Smok, does yours require the separate water supply?

Tom - do you have any elevation and long length to deal with ?? I tried this setup where I needed 50 ft hose (3/4") and some elevation and it continuously overheated and stopped even on no solids.
 

Latest posts

Forum statistics

Threads
116,551
Posts
1,166,197
Members
120,560
Latest member
bobmax
Top Bottom