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Old 08-07-2012, 06:37 AM   #1
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Bleach for cleaning grey tank

Had a service tech tell us to put about a half cup of bleach down out toilet mixed with 3 gallons water before leaving to camp and dump it when we get to new campsite to clean sensors and tank. Anyone do this? I was always told NOT to use bleach. I have heard about water softeners but not bleach.
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Old 08-07-2012, 06:59 AM   #2
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I wouldn't do it....Many people use bleach for things it is not intended for.....
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:24 AM   #3
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Bleach will kill all the living organisms in the tank (and thus kill odors), but probably will not do much cleaning. Once in a very great while (like once every three years) I will use a cup of bleach in the black tank if it has sat in storage for a couple of months and is real stinky. I would not use it regularly - seems counterproductive. I doubt, however, that a single cup diluted would do any of the "gloom and doom" harm that people seem to think to either the tank/seals or the septic system (we use bleach regularly in our stick and brick and it goes into a septic).
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:29 AM   #4
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I always used water/bleach solution poured down all of the drains a few times a year, even in my stick house. It really cleans the slim or scum that builds up in the drain lines and keeps the gray water tank from smelling so bad. I've never used it in the black tank though. I made a angled sprayer that when inserted through the toilet would spray high pressure water on the sensors and make them work better.....at least for a short while.
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:40 AM   #5
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Toilet goes to back tank not gray tank.
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:50 AM   #6
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Your best black tank treatments to eliminate odors and break down solids are nothing but concentrated bacteria. They break down solids into water and CO2, which is odorless. Having bleach in the tank would just kill the bacteria, causing odors and taking much longer to beak solids down.

If you used a formaldehyde based treatment it wouldn't matter because that kills bateria too. To me this is totally counterproductive to the end results I'm looking for.

I never have a sensor problems as bacteria eats FOG (fats oils grease) too. Those that don't find using a good grease cutting detergent and a water softener works well for them.
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Old 08-07-2012, 08:50 AM   #7
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When we had septic, the plumber told us to put a quart of buttermilk down the sink once a month. What would that do in a MH black tank I wonder? Not advocating it, just curious?
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:24 AM   #8
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It would help the baterial action in the septic tank.
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Old 08-07-2012, 11:12 AM   #9
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I been told that calgon water softener and tide mixed with water will keep both the black and gray tanks nice and clean.
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Old 08-07-2012, 11:47 AM   #10
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I have used a bleach mixture in both holding tanks from time to time but not often. My normal approach is to add a cup of some kind of cheap "Pine Sol" to the toilet bowl and flush it down along with a few gallons of clean water every time I dump the black tank. I only do this with the grey tank occasionally.

I'm from the camp that feels our tanks are holding tanks and not effective septic systems.

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Old 08-07-2012, 02:26 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickO View Post
I'm from the camp that feels our tanks are holding tanks and not effective septic systems.

Rick

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Old 08-07-2012, 03:33 PM   #12
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Quote:
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I'm from the camp that feels our tanks are holding tanks and not effective septic systems.

Rick
I agree 100%! We use nothing in the black water tank and suffer no odors.
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Old 08-07-2012, 05:10 PM   #13
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I have added 5 gallons of water and a bag of ice in the black tank just before leaving the house and dumping when we get to the campground. This lets the ice rattle around cleaning sensors and the dried material from the tank. By the looks of the discharge it works well.
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Old 08-07-2012, 05:14 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickO

I'm from the camp that feels our tanks are holding tanks and not effective septic systems.

Rick
You are very correct in your thinking Rick. Generally speaking, a 40 gal holding tank does make a good septic tank or system. Especially in a CG where you can use all the water you want and can dump anytime you want.

When the septic tank therory really comes into play is when boondocking. These newer bacterial additives have a very highly concentrated bacterial content which can break down all solids in 24 hrs and produce no odor. You can use almost no water which extends your stay by 2x before needing to dump and extends your water supply.

Every experience RVer has discovered the best way that works for them determined on how they use their RV. It's just one method doesn't necessary work the best for all situations
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