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Old 09-09-2013, 03:22 PM   #1
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Unhappy Blocked Black Holding tank

We recently bought a 1998 GB Cruise Master Motorhome. Problem... the past owners did not look after the black water tank and so we inherited a full tank all the time.. We empty and empty and empty but it never does. We have tried water pressure, yeast, toilet chemicals from the RV place. We have tried ice cubes and driven around and still nothing comes out. The mechanics think that the tank was left to dry out and so it is full of dried stuff that won't come off the walls of the tank We can't afford to buy and install a new one. Any advice. We also called the honey wagon company thinking they might know of anything and they don't. Please we need help as we live in our motorhome full time.
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Old 09-09-2013, 03:33 PM   #2
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I'm not quite sure what you mean when you say, "a full tank all the time."

Are you sure the tank is really full - hence not dumping when you pull the dump valve - or whether the sensors are telling you the tank is full.

If it is the first problem, a full tank which isn't dumping, it's time to put on the haz-mat suit and use a drain cleanout tool like this:

25 Ft. Drain Cleaner With Drill Attachment

I would put a tarp down with 4X4's under the edges to form a catch basin, open the dump valve and start reaming out the sludge from below. If it starts to drain good, shut the valve, hook up your drain hose and dump the liquid. Then you'll need to figure out what to do with the doo-doo in the tarp.

If it's just your sensors telling you it's a full tank, that's a lot less messy.
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Old 09-09-2013, 03:35 PM   #3
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I would try one of these;

Swivel StikSwivel Stik


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Old 09-09-2013, 03:52 PM   #4
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The tank sensors are often incorrect if that is what you are using as an indication of a full tank. If the tank is full, when you put water in it, you should be able to see the water in the tank through the toilet drain. If it is full and blocked, you probably would not be able to get any flow through your black tank dump valve. Let the water sit in the tank for a couple of weeks and that should liquify any solids in the tank.
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Old 09-09-2013, 03:55 PM   #5
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If you are going by the sensors, DON'T. Sensors are notorious for being off. If you are adding chemicals/water and it doesn't overflow, obviously it isn't full. Does it 'burp' when you flush? That's the sign of a black tank that is almost full. Have you put on a clear elbow on the discharge side to see what comes out?

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Old 09-09-2013, 04:54 PM   #6
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We use the "Happy Camper" tank treatment. They have one version called the Happy Camper Extreme that is designed to solve your problem. I would try that before taking more drastic measures.
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Old 09-09-2013, 05:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
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The tank sensors are often incorrect if that is what you are using as an indication of a full tank. If the tank is full, when you put water in it, you should be able to see the water in the tank through the toilet drain. If it is full and blocked, you probably would not be able to get any flow through your black tank dump valve. Let the water sit in the tank for a couple of weeks and that should liquify any solids in the tank.
Ours was the same way when we got it. I put some rid-x in it, filled it up and let it sit. It dissolved all the solids and when I pulled the dreaded black handle,,,,,,yeah,,,,, all gone. Never had a problem again. Give it a try before you spend a bunch of money. Hope it works for you...
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Old 09-09-2013, 07:19 PM   #8
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The imfamous black tank syndrome. I hope the previous owners didn't camp with the waste valve open! You would end up with the dreaded " Black Mountain" . All the reccomended recipes have yet to fix my "full" tank. 10 bags of Ice cubes, salt, assorted cleaners, Driving, sitting, even oxy clean have not restored mine. Perhaps your where I'm at and should test your sensors thenselves.
Good luck.
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:54 AM   #9
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We use the "Happy Camper" tank treatment. They have one version called the Happy Camper Extreme that is designed to solve your problem. I would try that before taking more drastic measures.
X-2 on the Happy Camper extreme! I use their enzyme while the coach is in storage in "sunny" Florida! Never a smell, none! When in use just lots and lots of water. Keep us posted!
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Old 09-11-2013, 08:33 AM   #10
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Sensor tells us but you can see it in the bottom of the toilet. That is what we go by.. Also when we try to dump hardly anything comes out. Since we have to dump every two days I would say that the tank is full.
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Old 09-11-2013, 08:34 AM   #11
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X-2 on the Happy Camper extreme! I use their enzyme while the coach is in storage in "sunny" Florida! Never a smell, none! When in use just lots and lots of water. Keep us posted!
We can't get "Happy Camper" here. I live in Canada. Also we don't "store" we live in the RV full time all the time..
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Old 09-11-2013, 08:39 AM   #12
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Soap

I would sick a stick down the toilet drain and see if you feel or can stir up anything that seems solid. If you can then stir if up best you can and then power dish soap down and run down a bumpy road for a few hours.. Also take the drain hose off if that don't work and put a rod up the outlet see if you can find a clog!
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Old 09-11-2013, 08:49 AM   #13
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Patience and some of the cures noted here plus:

Hot water and one of those flexible hoses for cleaning out a tank you can get at CW or RV supply and start blasting both ends.

When I use mine it cleans the sensors by the time I am done.
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Old 09-11-2013, 12:19 PM   #14
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Patience and some of the cures noted here plus:

Hot water and one of those flexible hoses for cleaning out a tank you can get at CW or RV supply and start blasting both ends.

When I use mine it cleans the sensors by the time I am done.
X2 on this, when we took delivery of our current RV it had sat for a year on the lot with a 2/3 full tank that had lots most of its "moisture" and would not dump.

I tried a number of things then called as local RV rental place and asked what they do when they have a "solid" blank tank. Their answer was lots and lots of very hot water and dawn soap. After 5 cycles of this with a 2 hour wait between each my was fully clean.

Shaun
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