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Old 08-15-2005, 06:31 AM   #1
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I have read the discussion right befor this one, but I was wondering if you could help me also. I have a somewhat different situation. I have a terrible odor that comes from my black water holding tank. I am a seasonal camper so I cannot drive my camper around (it is up on blocks). This odor is so bad. Everytime we flush the tank you can smell the contents. I had the toilet replaced because the water wasn't staying in it after being flushed. That was not the problem. I have wanded the tank also. I have tried many different types of chemcials too. Please help!
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Old 08-15-2005, 06:31 AM   #2
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I have read the discussion right befor this one, but I was wondering if you could help me also. I have a somewhat different situation. I have a terrible odor that comes from my black water holding tank. I am a seasonal camper so I cannot drive my camper around (it is up on blocks). This odor is so bad. Everytime we flush the tank you can smell the contents. I had the toilet replaced because the water wasn't staying in it after being flushed. That was not the problem. I have wanded the tank also. I have tried many different types of chemcials too. Please help!
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Old 08-15-2005, 06:39 AM   #3
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Try the 'GEO' method. Do a google on GEO RV BLACK and you should find it. It basically involves adding a cup of Calgon water softner and liquid detergent like TIDE.

Mainly recommended to fix sensor problems but also seems to get rid of odors. Mine has set for a couple of months now since I tried it without any of the normal chemicals and it is fine, no smell at all.
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Old 08-15-2005, 06:58 AM   #4
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We finally found a product called "Happy Camper" that took care of our odor problem. It worked on the first tank and has been great ever since. You could also install a swivel top to your vent pipe that is a venturi to vacume any odor off when the wind blows.

Doug
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Old 08-15-2005, 07:12 AM   #5
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I will try the method of the water softner and detergent. I hope that it will help.

What is a venturi and where would I find something like that. I am assuming that it is getting vented because when I flush you also smell it outside.
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Old 08-15-2005, 07:15 AM   #6
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More information might be helpful here. My guess is, since you do not move the camper, there is no sloshing around and you have a build up all over the inside of the tank that no amount of Calgon, formaldahyde, etc will help. I have some suggestions.

Do you have access to lots of water? If yes, do you use a lot of water with each flush? You should.

Do you wait until the tank is full before you dump? If no, than that's problem number one. Even if you wait until it's 3/4 full like I do, that might not be enough since there is no camper movement. You should probably wait until is is REALLY full before you dump. Then, at least the top of the tank gets a little sloshing.

Install a spray head into the tank. This requires cutting a hole in the tank with a holesaw but it's an easy job. (I did mine in an hour). For you, it will probably be a messy job. Make sure the tank is drained!

Finally, since you are a seasonal camper, I would treat the tank as a septic tank rather than a holding tank. During the periods you are gone from the camper, fill the tank with fresh water and add a strong septic tank enzyme product to the tank. Flush thoroughly when you return to the camper. This may eat through the solids clinging to the sides and top.

Good luck.
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Old 08-15-2005, 07:21 AM   #7
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I do not use a lot of water with each flush, I am afraid of filling the holding tank between dumps. I am a seasonal camper but I only get dumped once a week. We do not have permanent hook ups, the honey wagon has to come by and they do it on Mondays.

I will start to use more water when flushing (how much would you recommend, I have a 40 gal holding tank). I have since started to actually fill the tank before dumping. I never did that before so maybe things did get stuck to the sides. When I left the campground yesterday I did fill the tank and added a little bit of rid-x and some bleach. It is getting dumped today so I hope that will help the problem. How many times do you all think it will take to actually get rid of the odors?
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Old 08-15-2005, 09:32 AM   #8
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Well, if you put bleach with the RidX, you killed the RidX. One or the other at a time. I would try the RidX first. The other info is good. Fill the tank before dumping and use plenty of water. The way you have been doing it in the past has probably caused a buildup in the tank that may be difficult or impossible to fix. Take you time and work on it each week and see how it goes.
Good luck!!!
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Old 08-15-2005, 10:27 AM   #9
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Yes, keep in mind that if you use RidX or some other microbial product, (I recommend that approach), NEVER use anything that will kill bacteria. This includes bleach, formaldahyde, any of the blue chemicals, etc.

The good news for you may be that you were doing some things wrong and all you may need to fix your problem is adjust some of the things you do.

Make sure by the time that honey wagon gets there your tank is as full as you can get it with fresh water.

Try to leave the tank full of fresh water and RidX, (no waste), if you will be gone for a while. So if they dump you on Monday, stay for the dump, fill the tank with RidX and fresh water, and then time it to arrive again on a Monday to dump again. A few cycles of that ought to get you back in business.

Good luck.
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Old 08-16-2005, 03:37 AM   #10
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Unfortunately I cannot time the dumps to be there on a Monday. I am there every weekend so I will not be able to fill it with fresh water and rid-x.

If I use just rid-x and no chemcials, won't the smell be worse for us when we are there? Also, if I use the rid-x, can I put in the calgon and detergent? Or should I just try the chemicals and the calgon and detergent?

Also, I went to my local grocery store this morning and couldn't find any calgon, where does everyone find this product? Thanks in advance.
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Old 08-16-2005, 04:33 AM   #11
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Ernhrts3n8:
Unfortunately I cannot time the dumps to be there on a Monday. I am there every weekend so I will not be able to fill it with fresh water and rid-x.

If I use just rid-x and no chemcials, won't the smell be worse for us when we are there? Also, if I use the rid-x, can I put in the calgon and detergent? Or should I just try the chemicals and the calgon and detergent?

Also, I went to my local grocery store this morning and couldn't find any calgon, where does everyone find this product? Thanks in advance. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

If you are only there for a weekend each week, it probably takes a few weekends before the tank is full, right? And you are probably not there EVERY weekend all season, right? And don't you have to be there when the honey wagon comes? I guess it depends how flexible you can be with your schedule as so whether this can get cleaned up quickly or it may take a while.

I have never bought in to the Calgon deal. Not knocking it. It might work great. There has just not been any supporting evidence on how it performes this task. Calgon is typically used to absorb hardness in water so a detergent can do its job more effectively. Don't see how softer water will make the clumps dissolve. As for detergent or other chemicals, you run the risk of killing any beneficial microbes that may be down there trying to help you.

I would also suggest, that you only post your problem one time and, if you want to inform more people of your post, that you just post pointers to the single thread that details the problem. I spent a good deal of time on my answer to you and it would be good if everyone that is responding to you have seen everyone elses' answers. It's called cross posting and it's considered a no-no. I put a smiley on 'cause I don't mean this to sound so negative. Just trying to help you with your problem. Good luck!

I just thought of some other things. I don't think you mentioned how long you have had this trailer. Is this problem something you inherited or did this problem occur just recently. I'm wondering that maybe the previous owner allowed solids to build up by keeping the black tank valve open all the time. If that's that case, it may not be fixable. I have heard horror stories of people having to replace their black tanks because the solids would never disolve. (Hope that's not the case here).

If all else fails, you might try Roto-Rooter. (I have never heard this suggested so don't laugh too hard - I don't know if it would work). They have cameras that can be put down drains to see where clogs are. Maybe they can examine the inside of the tank. (Not a job I'd want )

I guess I'll just keep throwing out suggestions until you tell us it's fixed. Later.
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Old 08-16-2005, 05:08 AM   #12
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Thank you for your reply, now to answer your questions.

I am there every weekend from April 15 to Oct 15. I usually dump the tank every other weekend. I do nothave to be there when they dump. Sometimes I am there becuase I happen to be on vacation, but usually I am back to work. It would be hard to be there when they dump because sometimes they dump in the morning and sometimes it is in the afternoon. As I have said before, I am starting to fill the tank on Sunday nights before I go with fresh water to have as much water in there as possible.

You are telling me that that chemicals would destroy any micros that are down there trying to do their jobs, so then I should just use the rid-x? Again, won't the smell be worse for us if we don't put anything down there besides the rid-x? I don't mean to stupid or anything, I'm just trying to figure out this problem. Would it be a good idea to go there tonight since I was dumped yesterday and put the rid-x in there and let it sit for a few days before I get there and then should I put chemicals in this weekend after the rid-x has sat for a few days? Thank you again for your reply.
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Old 08-16-2005, 06:20 AM   #13
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Would the regular Blue deoderizer adversely affect the Rid-X? My understanding is it is just a deodorizer and does not contain any formaldahyde. Couldn't the Rid-X and a deoderizer be put in together?
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Old 08-16-2005, 06:50 AM   #14
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I am hoping that would be the case. I can't imagine what it would smell like just using the rid-x. I do use a formadye type puck, but if a non formaldahde type can be used with the rid-x I will gladly try that route.
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