When to Dump the Tanks - Time versus Volume

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spitndrum

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Oct 19, 2006
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Hi Folks,

    I am new to RVing and to this forum.  My wife and I have a new travel trailer we keep on a lot about two hours from our home.  The lot has hookups.  We plan on using the trailer about 1 or 2 weekends a month.  I have seen information suggesting that a black water tank should be around 3/4 full before dumping the tank.  However, I have not seen information about how long the tank should be left partially filled.  Should I dump the tank after each weekend visit even though it is only slightly filled, or should I let the tank be partially filled for weeks at a time in order to get the tank 3/4 full?  Thanks in advance for your reply.

Jim
 

Carl L

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Mar 14, 2005
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west Los Angeles
Or you can fill it to the 2/3s, 3/4ths mark with water from a hose and dump it when convenient -- usually when you break camp.
 

spitndrum

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Oct 19, 2006
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3
Thanks for the suggestion Carl.  May I change my question slightly?  If I wanted to let the tank fill up a bit, then what is the maximum amount of time I should wait before dumping it? 

Best Wishes,
Jim
 

Tom

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Jan 13, 2005
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spitndrum said:
.... what is the maximum amount of time I should wait before dumping it?

Since it's essentially a sealed system  (odors can't get back up into the coach), you shouldn't have to worry about longevity in the tank.
 

Phil

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Mar 5, 2005
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spitndrum said:
Should I dump the tank after each weekend visit even though it is only slightly filled, or should I let the tank be partially filled for weeks at a time in order to get the tank 3/4 full? 

I wait until the tank is at least 1/2 full.  Sometimes this has taken as long as 3 months.  I add a little water to make sure the contents do not dry out.

PhilB
 

Karl

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Elkhart Lake, WI for the summer. Work at Road Amer
Time is the friend of the bacteria and enzymes that clean, or keep clean, your black water tank, which is essentially a septic system. A couple weeks or a month or more is better than just pumping water into it and draining immediately.
 

Jim Godward

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Mar 6, 2005
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Hillsboro, Oregon
I hate to admit this but...

Back in 1995 I had a problem with cancer.  Because of this, the MH was parked with about 1/2 full black tank and about a 3/4 full grey tank.  It sat that way from April to the following January/February till we drove it so my wife could take a driving class.  there was no problem when we dumped and we never noticed any odors either in the MH, actually  my wife did not as I didn't enter the MH for almost that whole time  nor did the neighbors ever complain.

BTW, this was after this group had convinced us to clean the tanks and NOT use anything in them for odor control.

 

colleenfl

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Aug 7, 2006
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127
We empty after each trip and it is usally close to being full so we stop at a flying J empty the tanks and fill the gas tank up so ready to go for the next trip.

We too use our MH a lot each month especailly being football season.

For the few times tank is not at least half full and we don't empty I put in a little more chemicals and add a little more water.

Another thing I do is just before we take off on a trip I turn on all the water faucets and let them run for a minute. I found out the hard way by not doing this odors back up from where I don't know and it is awful alomst like it is the black water but it is not it drove me crazy until someone told me to turn on the faucets and they were right I never have any odors anymore.

Good luck and welcome

Happy Trails
Colleen
 

Shayne

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Jan 22, 2006
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The odors more than likely are coming forn the gray water tank cause all the water in the traps has evaporated.  When you run the taps the water again fills the gap in the drain trap and seals off the odors from the tank.
 

colleenfl

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Aug 7, 2006
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127
Shayne
Yep thats right I just could not remember exactly what it was but knew it was not the black water in which that is what one would think cause the smell is just awful. When you wrote about the p traps it trigger my conversation I had about this issue.

Thanks
Colleen
 

Shayne

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Jan 22, 2006
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4,324
A little veggie oil in the drains or in  the commode bowl when i empty or  a dash of siicone spray or vasoline onthe rubber seal always helps keep the rubber flange  on the commode in good working order also.  Also helps prevent odors.  Don't need but a teaspoon full in each. I've even used it on the shutoff drain valves  Works as good as other lubes.
 
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