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Old 02-16-2008, 03:20 AM   #1
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I'm really leaving myself in a vulnerable spot here with my jocular friends on this forum but here goes......

This is our 2nd fiver. We've had this Excel about a year and have not had this problem until the last month. We've been sitting still since 10-12-07.
After draining the black water tank we have oder escaping into the basement and making it's way into the cabin of the trailer.

I use the backwash system about every third time I drain blackwater but that doesn't seem to make any difference in this problem.

Any input as to why this started happening after 10 months and suggested solutions would be appreciated
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Old 02-16-2008, 03:20 AM   #2
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I'm really leaving myself in a vulnerable spot here with my jocular friends on this forum but here goes......

This is our 2nd fiver. We've had this Excel about a year and have not had this problem until the last month. We've been sitting still since 10-12-07.
After draining the black water tank we have oder escaping into the basement and making it's way into the cabin of the trailer.

I use the backwash system about every third time I drain blackwater but that doesn't seem to make any difference in this problem.

Any input as to why this started happening after 10 months and suggested solutions would be appreciated
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Old 02-16-2008, 04:14 AM   #3
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You mentioned that the problem has been about a month since first noticed. Is it a constant presence or one that's noticed after the tank is emptied.

When you mentioned_____escaping into the basement and making it's way into the cabin of the trailer._____Is the odor noticable in the basement also? Have you checked the areas under the kitchen/vanity sinks for the odor.

Do you leave the "gray" tank valve open all the time or empty as it gets full. Is it possible that the odor could be from the gray tank. I know the odors can be different.

Sorry for all the questions.
Chris
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Old 02-16-2008, 04:15 AM   #4
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Virg,

I gonna give you break today! No wise cracks, but you know it won't last long as it just kills me!

I use the black water flush system everytime I dump. About every 2nd or 3rd dump, I do a super flush which includes a drain, close valve and almost refill with the flush system. Time this procedure and DON'T walk off from this event! I do this 2 times. I think this is very important in warmer climates to get a good flush. When we first got the rig, I was just doing one small flush (in warm weather) and we had strong odor inside the rig. Friends suggested a more complete flush which is what I was decribing above.

Also check the roof vent for the black tank to make sure it's open (can you smell odor and will water go down the vent freely?).

Just a couple of thoughts.

Letting you off easy for a change!
Tom
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Old 02-16-2008, 05:42 AM   #5
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Virg,
I also use the flush system after each dump and likewise fill the black tank approximately half full on the 2nd rinse. I replaced the standard black/gray water tank vents with the wind-directional type. Appears to have gotten rid of the odor we noticed at times around the outside of the coach. Good luck,
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Old 02-16-2008, 07:06 AM   #6
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Thanks guys. Looks like the answer is thorough "flushing" every time. I'll start that with the next drain.

Chris,
Your answers are it smells only about 2 hours after flushing and yes, in the basement also. I have checked the shower drain and it smells although I always close the gray water drain while I'm dumping blackwater, I fill the graywater tank during the process and let that flush the flex hose. And last, I can promise you it is not gray tank odor we are smelling.
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Old 02-16-2008, 07:46 AM   #7
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Virg,

I also flush my tank after every dump. I run the tank flush for 10-15 mins. I then close the black tank valve and turn off the flush. I go inside and fill the toilet bowl with clean water and flush it about 10 times. I figure that the rapid influx of water to the tank will break up any pyramid that may be forming. I then open the black tank valve and dump. I have noticed that this rinse is doing some cleaning. I then run the tank flush another 10 mins. We haven't had any odor problems using this method.

Paul
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Old 02-16-2008, 08:11 AM   #8
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Virg,

I've found that adding a cup of MD 20-20 will kill any odor coming from the black tank.

That stuff is really good!

Sorry, as I mentioned before....it wouldn't last long. rockin'
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Old 02-16-2008, 09:57 AM   #9
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Paul,
Thank you for sharing your experience. Your results speak for themselves.

Tom,
I ain't wastin any MD2020 or 'shine liquor on the blackwater thank. You can forgit it.
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Old 02-16-2008, 10:45 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by ChiefJohn:
Virg, I replaced the standard black/gray water tank vents with the wind-directional type. Appears to have gotten rid of the odor we noticed at times around the outside of the coach. Good luck,
John </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

We have a set of these too, and all our odor problems dis-appeared after these were installed.

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Old 02-16-2008, 04:06 PM   #11
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Does anyone use the "GEO Method" which I have seen touted elsewhere? (Calgon water softener, laundry detergent, and bleach.)
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Old 02-17-2008, 04:49 AM   #12
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If you want to use water softener and laundry detergent in your black tank, feel free to do so...although as others have stated, using the black tank flush after draining the tank should be more than sufficient to keep your black tank clean.

Where I part ways with the guy that *invented* the GEO method is the gallon of bleach he advocates putting in the black tank! First, there's absolutely no reason why the black tank needs to be "sanitized." And even if you wanted to sanitize it for some reason, a gallon is overkill! Then there's the fact that bleach isn't good for the seals.

So, if you want to use the GEO method, please at least eliminate the bleach. But you can save yourself a lot of money by just using plenty of water when you flush (particularly the solids) and using the black tank flush after emptying the tank. There are many, many people who use nothing in their black tanks and have never had a problem with odor.
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Old 02-17-2008, 06:23 AM   #13
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Before dumping, if the black tank is not yet full I use a 5 gallon bucket to completely fill the black tank shooting the water down the toilet as quickly as possible to dislodge any pyramid caking stuff. After the dump I shoot two more bucketfulls down the toilet then use the flush system. I then close the valve and pour about 5 gallons in there to slosh around when moving. If we are going to store the unit I will add an additive to help cut the sludge and hopefully keep the solids from solidifying too hard and caking up the inside of the tank. This has worked on our previous trailer for the ten years that we have had it - no oders. The gray tank gets only about 2.5 gallons and some bilge deodorant, (smells like Pinesol) to slosh around after dumping and before storage. Thay way even if the P-traps dry up, the odor isn't too bad.

This is probably overkill for FT'ers. It's more intended to minimize sedimentation, caking and hardening when not being frequently dumped.

I forget to mention my secret weapon for removing stubborn solids... throw a couple of handfulls of prunes down the toilet to keep things running smooth.
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Old 02-17-2008, 07:14 AM   #14
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by HB Phil:
I forget to mention my secret weapon for removing stubborn solids... throw a couple of handfulls of prunes down the toilet to keep things running smooth. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
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