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Old 05-26-2014, 09:47 PM   #1
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Grey water to flush black tank

I have talked about this before in another thread. I have all the parts I need now and when I get back to where my MH is parked next week I am going to hook this up but I wanted to solicit comments or advice before I start. First I have a macerator pump that is a permanent connection for my septic disposal. At the output where a slinky would hook up on my MH is a plastic fitting that has a garden hose connection and hooks up to a 3 inch hose going to my macerator pump. The garden hose connection bypasses my macerator pump and goes to the output hose of the macerator pump. IF I am at a campground with sewage connections I can put the macerator output hose in the sewer connection open the gray tank and continuously drain the gray water tank without running the macerator. My proposal is to take a Harbor Freight 12 volt marine pump. I am going to run the hose from the Grey water valve on the motor home to a Y valve. One output of the Y valve is going to run to the output of the Macerator valve as a bypass like the system is designed now. I am going to run the other output of the Y valve to the new Harbor Freight pump. The output of the Harbor Freight pump I am going to run to the hose connection for the Black tank spray cleaner. I have a switch to turn on the macerator pump I am going to replace that switch with a double pole double throw switch and keep one side wired to the macerator and the other side wired to the new Harbor Freight pump. This way I can run one pump or the other and not have to run new wiring other than a short run from the switch to the New Harbor Freight pump. I want to do this for two purposes. The first is to save fresh water. I do not like having to throw away gray water and then use fresh water to clean the black tank. This way I get some additional use out of the gray water and I am doing a small part towards green living. I also hope that since gray water is basically water with hand soap, bath soap and dishwashing soap in it I will see a better job of cleaning the black tank. My other purpose is when I am at a park that does not have septic at the campsite. I can fill up the gray tank in about three or 4 days. The black tank takes over a week to fill. When the gray tank gets full I have to get ready to travel pull to the camp dump station and then back to my campsite. My new pump should allow me to transfer gray water into my black tank and reduce the number of times I have to go to the camp dump by 1/2. If any one has any improvements over my plans I would love to hear them that is one reason I am posting this before I start. The Harbor freight pump was on sale for 38.99 and will pump 300 gph at 50 psi
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Old 05-27-2014, 03:06 PM   #2
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My 2 cents. My concern would be that over time small bits of food stuffs would clog the Black Tank Spray Cleaner.
I too have a Macerator pump with a bypass for gray water. The procedure I use is to leave the Gray valve open until a day or two before I'm ready to leave a site, I then close the gate valve to build up gray water.
After I dump the black tank I turn off the Macerator and open the Gray valve, the Macerator it's self acts as a block. The gray water then backtracks up the Black pipe and into the Black tank due to the unequal levels of the two tanks. Once the gray stops running into the Black, the levels are equal, I shut the Gray gate and redump the Black using the Macerator. I'll do this a couple of times. This provides a good flush of the Black tank. I then follow up with the Tank Tornado using fresh water.
Again JM2C
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Old 05-27-2014, 03:35 PM   #3
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I don't have the macerator pump, but do the same thing by having a third valve that after draining the black tank, I shut the third valve and open the grey valve. When the tanks have equalized, shut the grey and open the third. After three times, the black tank is fairly clean viewing it through a clear section. In your case, you will want to add a filter if you are going to pump grey water through the black tank sprayer or all of the holes will plug in time. In AZ, it is legal in all but two areas to dump grey water in the desert. However, if dish water is part of the contents of the grey water, it is considered "Black" water because of the food particles in it and you can not dump black water in the desert. I know you do not intend to dump in the desert. I only mention it to emphasize that foreign matter is in the grey water.
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Old 05-27-2014, 04:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crasher View Post
I don't have the macerator pump, but do the same thing by having a third valve that after draining the black tank, I shut the third valve and open the grey valve. When the tanks have equalized, shut the grey and open the third. After three times, the black tank is fairly clean viewing it through a clear section. In your case, you will want to add a filter if you are going to pump grey water through the black tank sprayer or all of the holes will plug in time. In AZ, it is legal in all but two areas to dump grey water in the desert. However, if dish water is part of the contents of the grey water, it is considered "Black" water because of the food particles in it and you can not dump black water in the desert. I know you do not intend to dump in the desert. I only mention it to emphasize that foreign matter is in the grey water.
I use this method too. Rinses the black tank, dump hose at the same time.
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Old 05-27-2014, 07:33 PM   #5
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Good Ideas.

I had thought about whether or not I wanted to add a filter I was sort of leaning towards that idea but after reading the posts so far I think I am going to do that it is not an expensive change to make. The idea of letting the gray water flow into the tank never occurred to me and sounds like a good idea. I am a techie person so using a simple method when I can concoct something more complicated is never my favorite option. I still like the idea of using the gray water in the black tank sprayer so I want to use the pump and I see where you do that just before you drain the black tank so it does not matter that you have some mixing of the black and gray tank water. I want to be able to store gray water in the black tank and delay the time I have to go to a camp dump to dump my tanks. I do not want to mix the two tanks together and let them sit.
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Old 08-22-2014, 01:26 AM   #6
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Adding the filter should solve the clogging nozzle issue. I like your idea and it gives me something to plan on as a modification to the dump and cleaning routine.

I normally run the jets as I dump the black water for the whole time period until I get clear water. I find this is a great way of ensuring I've gotten it as clean as possible for the amount of time the dump process takes. The addition of the soap solutions from the gray water side works wonders, I also use a cheap brand of hand/dish washing detergent that is kept next to the toilet, instead of the normal store brought chemical that's added to the flush routine. I've done an inspection using a bore scope, inside my black water tank in our fiver, when we had it. The method I just noted made a marked difference in the cleanliness of the rinsed tank. And there was almost no odor after only one rinse. I hope you post the completed pictures of your project. Necessity is the mother of invention. Simplicity in such an unpopular but necessary job is always welcome.
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