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Old 12-21-2017, 06:09 AM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 92
Black/Grey tank pumping

I知 parked at a private camp. A week ago their septic lift pump went out so I知 unable to drain my tanks. They are providing a septic pumping service to come in and pump my tanks as needed. Does anyone see any potential issues with this? The only thing I致e noticed is that both of my tank level indicators are showing incorrect fill levels.

2012 Itasca Ellipse
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Old 12-21-2017, 06:13 AM   #2
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I've used pump out services many times. No issues.

Dump some Dawn dish soap or Happy Camper Extreme in your tanks to try to clean your sensors.
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Old 12-21-2017, 06:21 AM   #3
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Thanks, I値l do that. I知 unable to really use my black tank flush, figured that痴 probably the issue. Grey tank is kinda of a head scratcher.. Appreciate the advice.
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Old 12-23-2017, 09:08 AM   #4
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After reading all the problems folks have with their black tank sensors not working properly—me included—I decided to tackle this problem.

Here’s what I did for the black tank:

• Bought anti flush wand from Amazon

Then I cut off the tip to give it a wider spray pattern

• Empty the black tank completely

• Attach the wand to a separate hose coming off the supply line with a “Y” connector, and brought that hose through the bedroom window. The reason I mention this is, is because the wand comes with an adapter to hook up to the bathroom sink. Problem is, when you hook it up to the sink and then open the toilet to insert the wand down into the tank, the toilet is also releasing water and there just isn’t enough water pressure getting to the wand to get the job done.

Having the DW assist me at the water supply valve, I insert the wand down into the toilet connected to a separate hose, turned on water and blasted the water from the wand down in the black tank. Continued a back and forth, rotating motion along with pointing the want towards the end of the tank to blast off residue on the inside walls of the tank where the sensors are mounted on the outside of the tank. Did this procedure for about 3-5 minutes. Then dumped the black tank again. Blasted the entire inside of the tank again, while focusing mostly on the side where the sensors are. Dumped tank again.

• Went to control panel and checked level….yep…shows EMPTY like it’s suppose to.

• Added about 2 gallons of water, 1 scoop of Happy Campers…good to go. I have perform this procedure every couple of months though no matter how I maintain it. The sensors are just not that good, but with a periodical cleaning like I've described, they'll work for awhile.

• I've also tried Happy Camper Extreme in my gray tank didn't work. Then tried 6 gallons of white vinegar and hot water. With both techniques, we drove around some, let sit for several hours. Neither one worked. For the gray tank we've just learned when to dump.

• We've explored replacing with SeaLevel System sensors but not willing to pay the money for the product or the hassle of install for 2 bathrooms and the other systems they monitor.
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Old 12-24-2017, 10:04 AM   #5
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Does your toilet dump straight down to the black tank or do you have to snake around a curve in the tank to get to the bottom of the tank?
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Old 12-24-2017, 11:19 AM   #6
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Hello Bam565,

Now that you have your tanks emptied and the sensors working again, you may also want to consider doing this.
In addition to the commercial black tank deodorizer, cleaners, I add 1/2 cup of Borax and 1 cap full of Calgon to the black tank after each time we dump and flush.
Apparently it helps to keep any solids in the tank from sticking to the side walls and clogging the sensors.
I then add about 3/4 cup of Dawn Dish Liquid to the grey tanks after dumping. This grease fighting liquid really does help to cut through any grease and soapy build up on the sensors.
After 2 years of using this technique we have had zero issues with inaccurate sensor readings.
These 3 items are very reasonably priced and available at Walmart.
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Old 12-24-2017, 12:16 PM   #7
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YES there can be issues using a 'pump out service' to empty your RV waste tanks.

RV Waste tanks are designed to hold weight/volume NOT a vacuum.

IF honey wagon operator uses too much vacuum to suck tanks out the tanks can collapse inward.'
Yes tanks have vent lines.........which are fine for normal filling/draining ---air in/out is equal to waste in/out.
But a honey wagon can suck a tank out FASTER then air can be pulled in via vent line. A collapsed waste tank is damaged and would need to be replaced.

No more then 10" Hg (vacuum) is needed to fully suck out a waste tank IF connected directly to RV dump line.
Preferred method is using a 'dump box' which eliminates too much vacuum on a waste tank
Dump Box.......
RV dump line connected to one side of box which has a vent line
Septic truck vacuum hose connected to other side of dump box
Weir wall separates the two sides
Regardless of vacuum ---septic truck can NOT pull a vacuum on the RV waste tank

But very few septic trucks have/use a vacuum box so pay attention to honey wagon vacuum gauge ---vacuum being used when pump out is being done.
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grey tank, tank

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