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Old 03-01-2015, 01:39 PM   #1
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Black Tank Plugged

I need advice helping my neighbor. They left the black tank valve open a few days back and the toilet is backed up.
They own a Alpha 3 slide, SF31RKT Spacemaster. I don't know the year but it is over ten years old. They are Fulltimers.

I have a hand held snake, extra septic hoses and hose caps if needed.

What I know; there is nothing coming out past the valve (they have a clear elbow installed).

My plan; turn off water supply, run carefully the snake down into tank and attempt to clear blockage.

I hope to hear from someone who is familiar with this model, I'm a Newbie myself.
Please any questions and or advice is welcome...
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Old 03-01-2015, 02:04 PM   #2
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You might get lucky and get it with the snake but dought it. What I would do is back flush the drain. If they don't have a sewer drain cap with a hose connection. They can pick one up at any RV store, Walmart may have one. You will need a female X female hose swivel to connect the hose to the cap any home center or hardware store will have them. With the hose connected turn on the water and open the dump valve. The plug will be pushed into the tank. Close the dump valve, disconnect the hose remove the cap hook up drain hose. Make sure the the tank is at least 3/4 full and open the dump valve quick. The force of water in the tank should push plug out the drain.

http://www.amazon.com/Camco-39463-Se...s=rv+drain+cap
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Old 03-01-2015, 02:05 PM   #3
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Bilgerat,

It sounds like they have created the dreaded "brown mound". The only thing I can offer is to fill black tank with as much water as possible, via the external tank flush if equipped, or a hose down the toilet. The water will help soften the mound and hopefully flush the tank of its blockage. This will have to be repeated several times to clear the tank.
Good Luck
Cheers Rick T
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Old 03-01-2015, 02:16 PM   #4
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Doesn't really matter what model it is when you have a pyramid in a black tank. Try closing the dump valve then go down thru the toilet with a stick and try to push the buildup away from the pipe enough to let water into the tank fill the tank about three fourths full then dump it hopefully this will open it up. Fill and dump until your satisfied that it's clean. Never leave the valve open, never dump until your tank is mostly full or add water to fill before dumping.

Good luck.
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Old 03-01-2015, 02:23 PM   #5
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Thanks, I went over with a broom handle but it wasn't long enough to stay above "water". I am looking for a replacement.
The problem is, we are having a Ice Event here, it is so very slippery everywhere. I am unable to drive in it. I am capable, but people around here can't drive in the snow, so I am not going to risk it. So I have to use what I have or can scrounge. No Store Run.
BTW the black tank is showing full. Not my rig so I don't know if it is reliable.
I am going to put some Happy Camper and laundry detergent down the hole. They have a tank rinse system, but again it's not my rig so my knowledge is limited.
Thanks and please I am open to any advice.

I will update soon, need to get my rubber gloves. Yikes...
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Old 03-01-2015, 02:40 PM   #6
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Install a clear elbow with male hose connection fitting onto the existing tank drain hose outlet. Then 3rd gate valve onto the elbow. Then stinky slinky onto the 3rd gate valve.
Close 3rd gate valve, open black dump valve, turn on water hose. "Bump" or turn on/off water hose to create pulsing or surge effect back into black tank. Periodically shut water off and open third valve and observe any discharge.

Repeat, repeat, repeat until drain is coming out clear.
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Old 03-01-2015, 02:56 PM   #7
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Hi Elf111, I do hope you know I am trying to help out here. I am not familiar with this type of rig, My point is these are seasoned RV'ers, it just happened.
I wish I knew if the toilet drops poop straight down like mine or is there a elbow somewhere.
I have put 4 scoops of Happy Camper, 1 cup of laundry detergent, 1 cap of water softener, I filled the toilet bowel with water and flushed, it took just over 3/4 of the bowel of water into the drain. I am going to wait an hour and use a old broom handle and see if I can get lucky.
I have to admit I am very shy to flush, it's not my rig. But if need be I will give a try.
I agree, the snake may not work, I thought about tying a rag to the business end.
Thanks again, will check back in an hour.
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Old 03-01-2015, 03:06 PM   #8
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You might try raising the dump hose higher than the tank and running the snake up thru the hose if it breaks loose it won't come out until you lower the hose. Didn't mean to lecture I've been where your at many years taking care of rental properties I've dug several things out of pipes and toilets.
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Old 03-01-2015, 03:08 PM   #9
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Bilgerat
You're a good man dealing with someone else's crap. Time and Patients will eventually soften things up.
Cheers Rick T.
p.s. your neighbour owes you a cold beer or given the weather a big Baileys and coffee.
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Old 03-01-2015, 03:33 PM   #10
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Ok, I am 90 percent positive that the blockage is at the valve. I do not have the fitting with a hose connection, so I am going to see if I can find one in the campground.
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Old 03-01-2015, 03:56 PM   #11
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Bet the rigs owner will never leave the dump valve open again.
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Old 03-01-2015, 04:04 PM   #12
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Bilgerat: You are going beyond the Call of Doo-Dee for them. Bless your heart. I sure hope they appreciate your efforts. \ken
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Old 03-01-2015, 04:14 PM   #13
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And you have the exact user name for the job, Bilgerat!

Tim
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Old 03-01-2015, 04:55 PM   #14
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All Pro Water Flow

We deal with these kind of blockages daily across the country. Your neighbor has (2) problems. First, the MOUND build-up on the in coming side of the black tank caused by not using enough water to move the solids to the deep end. Second, there is a SOFT blockage at the out-going valve area.
If you would like to call us for the fix over the phone please do and we will help you. Then after we have solved the problem you can post the step-by-step fix so that others can benefit from our experience. 719-237-7239
www.allprowaterflow.com
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