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Old 08-31-2013, 07:31 PM   #1
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Grey Water Backup

Ok, total newbie fulltimer here. Need your brains. We have a 2012 Thor Daybreak 34KD and just bought it a month ago. Unfortunately, it's got issues.

We left the last campground with 2/3 grey tank full. Along an hour long hilly ride, the familiar stench of grey water came through the coach, but it went away in a few minutes so we thought nothing of it.

We arrived at our next spot with some debris in the bathroom sink and the outdoor kitchen. The outdoor kitchen shows some water damage under the sink. This kitchen also happens to be under our bed area, so if a mold problem starts we are in deep trouble.

We have the area getting aired out right now. Considering a call to the local repair center. Here's our questions:

1. What could have caused this?
2. Should we always dump immediately before hitting the road?
3. How do you stop grey water from backing up?
4. Should I never take hills in my RV with tanks in use?
5. How do I deal with dampness and leaks?
6. We are worried mold could develop now. Do you take it to the dealership to be fixed and dried?
7. Anyway I can fix this myself?

Pictures show some of the issue. One pic is of under the outdoor sink which seems to show drainage from the macerator. The other is a pic of the damage to our front of the kitchen.

Thanks for any thoughts!
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Old 08-31-2013, 07:44 PM   #2
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Did you assume the 2/3 full from the tank gauges? They are notoriously inaccurate and unreliable. If you indeed had a gray water backup into the sinks inside the RV it was because the tank was overflowing.
You may dry-out the RV yourself with fans and a dehumidifier, followed by using a mold/mildew treatment product. Another option is to contact a water-damage restoration company, who should guarantee their work.

I usually empty the gray tank prior to leaving a CG. The only way to stop gray water from backing-up is to stop adding water. IMO, this is a DIY job. If it were a long-term water damage I would seek a restoration company in leu of a RV repair shop.
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Old 08-31-2013, 07:49 PM   #3
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Agree, I suspect the indicator is not correct. I suggest to fill and dump the tank a few times with de-greaser added to try to clean the sensors. Take the opportunity to sanitize the system if you have not done so for awhile.
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Old 08-31-2013, 11:22 PM   #4
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I suggest getting a different tank level sensor system. I personally like the See Level II system. A lot more accurate and reliable.
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Old 08-31-2013, 11:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vsheetz View Post
Agree, I suspect the indicator is not correct. I suggest to fill and dump the tank a few times with de-greaser added to try to clean the sensors. Take the opportunity to sanitize the system if you have not done so for awhile.
What degreaser do you recommend?
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Old 08-31-2013, 11:55 PM   #6
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I suggest getting a different tank level sensor system. I personally like the See Level II system. A lot more accurate and reliable.
Was this system an easy install? How difficult?
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Old 09-01-2013, 06:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderlusty View Post

What degreaser do you recommend?
I use TSP
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Old 09-01-2013, 06:58 AM   #8
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You should Always dump before you leave CG. Why would you travel with all that extra weight? I believe sometimes on rough roads you will get the smell from your tanks due to the loss of water in the P-traps. So be sure to run a bit of water when you land somewhere. You should be able to clean this on a DIY basis. Lots of airflow and some kind of desicant will do the trick.
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Old 09-01-2013, 09:13 AM   #9
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It is perfectly acceptable to travel with water in the grey tank, in fact a small anoint is good for sloshing around. But 2/3 full (and sensors are often wrong) means you could easily be near full and have water back up into , usually, shower first then sinks. Why didn't you dump leaving the campground?

Best degreaser is some boing water poured down the drain.

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Old 09-01-2013, 09:20 AM   #10
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You should Always dump before you leave CG. Why would you travel with all that extra weight? .
We were leaving a very rustic spot and there was no where to dump in between point A and point B. Normally we aren't trying to travel with full tanks. We really thought it was only 2/3 full. :/
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Old 09-01-2013, 12:15 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by wanderlusty View Post
Was this system an easy install? How difficult?
Depends on how mechanically inclined you are. I am a retired maintenance techician and my friend helped me so to us it was an easy install. There are a lot of people talk about putting them in on various forums. The hardest two things about the install is where to put the monitor and the wiring. The sensors are the easiest thing to do. Sensors are put on the outside of the tanks. They recommend taping them in place after you get them wired to make sure they are working and at the right spot. After that you take off the paper covering the adhesive back and glue them where they were taped. All sensors use same wire. Just parralel the signal wire and the neutral for all of them. Most people use one of the pairs of wires going to an existing sensor to get the signal up to the monitor panel. A lot of people have just cut out the center of the existing monitor panel and mounted the new one there. I had room so I mounted it beside the other one. You can get the See Level monito with LPG monitoring to do that you just move the wires from your existing panel to the new monitor and calibrate which is easy. I purchased an extra See Level monitor and put it in my wet bay area. I can monitor the fresh water tanks while I am filling them or monitor the progress on dumping tanks right where I am working without having to go in the coach to monitor. It was a pretty easy install if you can get to the outside of your tanks. If you can not do that then might be pretty difficult. They have a web page that tells you how to install and more about the system. I find that it seems to monitor in about 6 per cent jumps. it goes from 0 to 6 per cent full to 12 per cent full to 18 per cent etc to around 94 per cent then 100. I tried every one of the homegrown solutions I could find on here first and they all seemed to work for a very short period of time. I have had these on for a year and still work perfectly


I just reread what I wrote and I am probably being too critical. It was not that hard to install. It took us about an hour and a half to do. The technician that installed one in the MH next to mine at a tiffin rally took about 30 minutes. The wiring is very simple if you know how to connect wires. Probably easier to hook up than installing a new indash radio for instance if that helps. Finding a good place and cutting out the hole for the monitor is what I mean by the hardest part. Not hard to hook monitor up.

Most of the people I have seen on here have loved their unit. If I bought a new motor home tomorrow I would insist on that being in there or I would have it retrofitted immediately.
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Old 09-01-2013, 03:07 PM   #12
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Dawn dishwashing liquid seems to keeps my tanks and the sensors in the tanks clean and virtually odorfree. Sensors are right on as to the levels. We use hot water to wash dishes and always dump grey water before leaving campground if their is a dump available.
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Old 09-01-2013, 03:21 PM   #13
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You might want to check your insurance policy regarding water damage. You could clean it yourself, but a pro will be able to do a better job - especially if you have already bought and paid for insurance to cover it.
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:36 AM   #14
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We had to travel once with near full tanks, due to lack of dump site, where we were. We have since learned to find the nearest one. But fortunately we didn't have any damage.
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