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Old 05-24-2013, 09:18 AM   #1
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Black tank stopped up-

Bad story- Good ending-

A fellow in the campground in Maine spent a week here. It was his first time out this season. Getting ready to leave the next day he went to dump. Guess what- you got it- !

We tried a snake, a back flush Camco device- no luck.

He called an excellent RV guy in Topsham, ME. He couldn't do it at his shop because he doesn't have a sewer drop.

So we call a septic tank guy here in Booth Bay, ME. He came right on out with his pump truck, and had an adapter that fits onto our RV's bayonet fittings for his hose. He hooked it up and put the suction to the hose and after several moments- POW- it broke loose

No mess- What a happy camper we then had here-

$50 bucks!

He sez what causes this is leaving the black tank valve closed when winterizing and not adding some liquid to the tank. We should be adding a small amount of water, and or better yet, RV antifreeze to the tank.

And oh- If you need to do this, it might help to shut the water off to the rig and have someone hold the toilet flush lever open to help prevent the suction collapsing the tank. Martin (the sewer pump out guy) was concerned about that.

Whew- happy ending-
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:23 AM   #2
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Glad everything "came out OK".
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:32 AM   #3
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Hard to imagine how leaving the black tank dump valve closed and dry over the winter could cause a build up which would clog the dump valve... assuming the tank had been dumped and was clean.

More likely if the coach was allowed to sit for a long time with a partially full black tank and then all the water evaporated.

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Old 05-24-2013, 09:39 AM   #4
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Hard to imagine how leaving the black tank dump valve closed and dry over the winter could cause a build up which would clog the dump valve... assuming the tank had been dumped and was clean.

More likely if the coach was allowed to sit for a long time with a partially full black tank and then all the water evaporated.

Rick
I thought the same thing...either way its a bit of shock when you've filled the tank and can't dump it.
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Old 05-24-2013, 11:40 AM   #5
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I thought the same thing...either way its a bit of shock when you've filled the tank and can't dump it.
also,if the tank is vented,why would you need to open the toilet valve to prevent the tank from collapsing?
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Old 05-24-2013, 12:15 PM   #6
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macantic--

Good point--

The fellow claims he flushed it out last season, as he always does, very well.

I only posted this problem about a stopped up black tank as an alternative method to cure a miserable problem- using a septic tank service. I had never heard of this being done before.

Cheap, clean and easy---

Good luck,
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Old 05-24-2013, 12:30 PM   #7
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Well...

...depending how full it was, I might have just added some detergent and water softener and water, and let it break down on the trip home. Maybe I could have saved $50!
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Old 05-24-2013, 05:37 PM   #8
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Just for general knowledge, a honey truck makes the rounds at the campground where we stay for the races. Had this done several times during the past three years and we have never had to open the toilet flush or anything else. The driver just drives close by, hauls the hose over and connects and away all the bad stuff goes - quick! These guys are well practiced at this and make a mint going from one to the next.
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Old 05-24-2013, 06:47 PM   #9
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also,if the tank is vented,why would you need to open the toilet valve to prevent the tank from collapsing?
Probably because if he had to develop full suction and if the black tank was full, the sudden rush when it all broke free could exceed the capacity of the vent tube to equalise the pressure.
Doesn't take much pressure differential to cause forces of a ton or more trying to collapse the larger flat sides of the tank.
Smart operator!
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Old 05-25-2013, 11:02 AM   #10
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Yes, "smart operator".

Hats off to Martin.
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