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Old 03-08-2011, 08:39 AM   #1
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Waste Tank Chemicals

Just got our first travel trailer, it will be parked on a lot and left. I see many products available for treating waste in the waste holding tanks. Have even read some water softener/ laundry soap/bleach home treatments. What is a good ecomonical additive for waste treatment? Is biodegradable toilet tissue neccessary? Thanks much.

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Old 03-08-2011, 08:54 AM   #2
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...and congrats on your new rig!

You'll find a lot of debate on this topic but many/most full timers use either nothing or, like I do, put 1/4 cup of Dawn dishwashing liquid in the tank with a few gallons of water following dumping. As for TP, I think it's all biodegradable but you probably want to look for something which is septic safe. Many folks suggest single ply but I use 2 ply.

good luck...


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Old 03-08-2011, 09:05 AM   #3
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Been rving for over thirty years and have tried most of the stuff. Found none of it is necessary, just do a good flush. RV toilet paper is the biggest repoff of all. Just use what you use at home. All TP is biodegradable unless it is made of synthetic fibers. The secret, if you want to call it that, is to use plenty of water. After dumping put about 5 gal. of water in the tank before using.
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Old 03-08-2011, 12:36 PM   #4
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No chemicals.

Special RV toilet paper is not necessary.

Most toilet paper marked "safe for use in septic systems" is OK.

Just wet a piece of your favorite paper. If it starts to come apart, it's OK.

I use Scott.
Adios, Dirk - '84 Real Lite Truck Camper, '86 Wilderness Cimarron TT, previously 4 years as a fulltimer in a '07 DSDP

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Old 03-08-2011, 01:41 PM   #5
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I will second Rt-66, Special paper not needed,, In fact I recommend against the most common brands of "RV-TP" (Tethford)

Scotts is very good, as is Angle Soft,, you may wish to avoid "Quilted" brands... Tetford (The RV type most often found in stores) is a nice grade of sandpaper. And I might add one of the slowest disolving in many of the tests that have been done. No reason to spend extra money on TP.

And even the worst Qulited brands break down faster than I can zip up, go out and pull the valve.

Now: Chemicals.... The very best chemical to use is good old Hydrogen Hydroxide.. Perhaps you know it by anoher name.. WATER.

The various treatments sold in the stored really do not do much good, HOWEVER if you are going to be a long time between dumps (more than 4 days) you might try one of the Biologicl products (Waste Digester types) They may also help with cleaning of sensors.

For a good cleaning of the tank read up on the GEO method which is fully described in several places on most every RV forum in existence. It uses Dawn Dishwashing liquid Calgon Water softener and water, yes water, my favorite chemical.. on and driving.
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Old 03-08-2011, 04:35 PM   #6
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wa8yxm said it.
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Old 03-08-2011, 04:57 PM   #7
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So I am on the other side of this no chemical debate. Just thought you would like to hear from the other side of the coin. We use the little indivual bags that we buy at WallMart. It is in a blue & white box, don't know the name brand. We tried the Geo Method for about 6-8 weeks & we were not happy with the results. We dump our black tank about every 3 weeks. I cleaned the tank & was very vigiliant about following the Geo method. It did not work for us, we still had some odor, so we went back to the chemicals & add water for 2 min from the flush & hose after dumping.

For TP we use scott or angel soft.
Dan Sees, Full Timing in the MH & Part timing in a S&B In Hampstead, NC
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:06 PM   #8
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The only time we've used chemicals was when we were at rallies for several days (in 90-degree heat & parked on blacktop, I might add) with no sewer hook ups. We've found plenty of water & cheap toilet paper work just fine any other time because we either had fhu's or were only without sewer for a day or 2 on a weekend.

We do use the Dawn dish detergent (the original blue stuff, not any of the other formulas) to clean between outtings. 1/4c with about 5 gallons of water to slosh around while driving home keeps the tanks & sensors clean...for us, anyway.

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Old 05-23-2011, 02:45 PM   #9
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I have used 1/2 cup of Borax with each tank emptying. I got tired of the odors when the camper was sitting and this put an end to it. Says safe for septic systems, softens water, repels roaches and other pests. Good for what ais ya! and it is cheap too.

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