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Old 11-27-2022, 11:22 AM   #1
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Arrow Grey Water/Black Water Issue

Hello all.

I'm looking for input.

Here is the background:
  • We are new RVers who have spent the last 5 months on assignment. There are only two of us.
  • We are cold weather camping in an RV Park in Idaho. We have skirting around the RV with a heat source under the RV to keep everything warm. I also have a heater in the basement to keep all the components warm and toasty.


We've had two situations since the weather turned cold. The grey water tank overflowed by backing up in the shower pan. (Yes, we empty the grey water tank on a regular basis every other day). Both backups occurred in the early morning hours around 6:00 AM local time. The last one was this morning..s

  • Yesterday, I back flushed the grey and black water tanks (they are on the same dump drain) and left water in both with a mix of Dawn Ultra and Borax.
  • We've never had the issue before the cold weather arrived.
I'm really stumped as to what to do other than to dump the grey water every day.

Thank you in advance.
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Old 11-27-2022, 11:28 AM   #2
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Curious it is not related to freezing and more of a blockage. Try snaking it. Another idea is real drain cleaner meaning the acid kind that is ok for plastic pipes. I personally leave my gray line open when on sewer not sure it that is possible for you.
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Old 11-27-2022, 11:29 AM   #3
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Unless you have a washing machine that is used everyday I doubt the Grey tank is Filling/Backing up in shower

Sounds more like backing up in shower is due to shower drain line to grey tank clogging, freezing etc

Need to insure shower drain line is clear
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Old 11-27-2022, 11:36 AM   #4
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Why is the grey tank filling so quickly? Sounds like you may have something dripping somewhere.
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Old 11-28-2022, 08:11 AM   #5
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I would agree with Old Biscuit about blocked or frozen. I personally have been full time for 13 years and I have never left the gray tank closed if I have a sewer. I would open the valve and leave it open. Someone is going to say you need to use the gray water to flush the hose after you drain the black but I personally don't buy into that argument. Open the valve and try. It is already backing up into the shower so what is the worst that can happen? I assume it goes away as soon as you open the valve.

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In the interest of full disclosure I have never camped (intentionally) in cold weather. The temp drops and I head for south Texas, the golf course and warm weather.
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Old 11-29-2022, 02:38 PM   #6
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I second the dripping idea. A faucet not quite closed can fill your grey tank amazingly quickly!
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Old 11-29-2022, 04:40 PM   #7
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Test if the grey tank is filling or frozen

A) Fill fresh water, then disconnect the fill hose and use on board pump to supply water. If grey is backing up in AM but fresh still has plenty left not a drip. Most likely frozen or blocked.

B) dump a couple gallons of RV antifreeze down shower. If no more issues probably freeze is the problem. Will need to insulate and heat the pipes. Gutter heat cable works well.
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