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Old 06-17-2020, 09:01 AM   #1
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Where/How to empty black tank

Sorry for this newbie question. We’re going on a 10 day trip with full hookups. When we return we’d like to stay at a Harvest Host or similar boon docking location. We’ll only have one day of black and gray tank when we get home. When and where can you empty so you can flush the black tank? I know there are dump stations but I assume you can’t flush there. I’ve never used a dump station yet other than those on my site. Also, is there anything I should do to add to the tanks so I don’t get sludge in the bottom of the tanks. I don’t want a black tank issue so any help would be appreciated. TIA
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Old 06-17-2020, 09:09 AM   #2
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Sorry for this newbie question. Weíre going on a 10 day trip with full hookups. When we return weíd like to stay at a Harvest Host or similar boon docking location. Weíll only have one day of black and gray tank when we get home. When and where can you empty so you can flush the black tank? I know there are dump stations but I assume you canít flush there. Iíve never used a dump station yet other than those on my site. Also, is there anything I should do to add to the tanks so I donít get sludge in the bottom of the tanks. I donít want a black tank issue so any help would be appreciated. TIA
Add plenty of water. Since you will be boondocking after you get home add water to the tanks.
If you don't have very much water in the black tank before you dump you will need to add water to help get the solids out.
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Old 06-17-2020, 09:14 AM   #3
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You don't mention what state you will be in but a few states have dump facilities in some rest areas. We usually spend the last night in a FHU site for the reasons you mention. I suppose you could check with some local RV parks. Some will allow dumping for a nominal fee.
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Old 06-17-2020, 09:41 AM   #4
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You don't mention what state you will be in but a few states have dump facilities in some rest areas. We usually spend the last night in a FHU site for the reasons you mention. I suppose you could check with some local RV parks. Some will allow dumping for a nominal fee.
We’ll be in Michigan, coming back from Petosky to Chicago. I know I can dump but from what I’ve experienced the flush portion is good to perform.
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Old 06-17-2020, 10:14 AM   #5
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Every dump station I've been to in NC, TN, WV, GA and FL all had water available to connect my santiflush to. That what it's called on my 5ver to use the spray nozzles in the tank to flush them well.
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Old 06-17-2020, 10:16 AM   #6
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I use the clean out at my house to dump if needed. Its down near the curb. I will put a lot of water in the black tank and let sit a few days then add more water and dump. Usually dump at full hook up and leave empty other then a few gallons of water in the tank
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Old 06-17-2020, 10:22 AM   #7
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A sewer treatment plant may also have a dump station for a nominal charge. Ours used to be free now there is $5 charge by credit card.
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Old 06-17-2020, 10:30 AM   #8
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Check for a Bass Pro/Cabelas shop as some have dump stations.
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Old 06-17-2020, 10:53 AM   #9
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As stated you can do a simple google search to locate potential dump sites near your home. Another option might be if you can dump in your cleanout for your home. I have a cleanout somewhat near my driveway so I can stretch out the hose and dump at home.

As far as the dumping process, id say you have plenty of time to practice during the 10 days that youre camping. Make sure your connections are on correctly, make sure the dump hose is secure in the dump pit, move slowly.

As for the process it goes like this. Attach hose to RV, make sure the little knobs are secure and you have a good connection. Connect the other end to the dump pit, you might have to screw in the connection or you might just set it in the hole, regardless make sure it is secure. Keep your valves closed. You can keep the gray water valve open if you want however I always just keep things closed until it is almost full then dump. Definitely want to keep the black tank valve closed.

I let the black tank fill to at least 3/4 before I dump it. Same with gray water.

When its dumping time there should be a hose that you can connect to hose bib onsite, connect the other end to the sewer flush which should be located in the same compartment that has the dump valves, it will say something like "sewer, flush, black tank flush, tank clean" something like that.

If your black tank is somewhat full then you simply slowly pull the black tank valve until it is fully open, make sure the hose doesnt try to flop out, turn on the hose bib to start spraying water into the tank. Once the black tank drains close the valve, the tank will start filling up, while its filling open the gray water and drain that tank. Once the black tank is around 3/4 I open it again and let it drain. Turn off the hose bib and let it drain completely. (If your rv does not have an exterior extension to connect a hose to clean the black tank you can always fill the black tank by letting the toilet run or running the shower head into the toilet.

Personally then I close the black tank valve and turn the hose bib back on and count to about 30-45 seconds in my head, reason for this is I like to leave a little water in the bottom of my black tank for two reasons. First if any tp or solids didnt happen to come out I want to keep it wet, second is I used to get some nats or small insects that would breed in the crapper when it was dry, once I started leaving it wet they went away.

Lastly, just take your time. Personally for me draining the rv tanks is similar to sitting on the boat dock watching people launch boats. Everyone has a different method and procedure. Its not a race and its not a talent show. just get the job done cleanly.

Anyways hope this information helps, youll get it no problem.
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Old 06-17-2020, 11:53 AM   #10
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As far as the dumping process, id say you have plenty of time to practice during the 10 days that youre camping. Make sure your connections are on correctly, make sure the dump hose is secure in the dump pit, move slowly.
Thanks for the help. The dump process I have conquered . Itís the second and third flush that Iím concerned about. As long as there is a rinse hose that I can use, Iíll be fine. Our MH will sit in storage for about a month after the trip so I donít want to just dump the black tank once and believe itís enough. Iíve always had sewer and water at our campgrounds so I havenít had to think about about going to a dump station.
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Old 06-17-2020, 12:38 PM   #11
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We’re going on a 10 day trip with full hookups. When we return we’d like to stay at a Harvest Host or similar boon docking location. We’ll only have one day of black and gray tank when we get home.
If I have this right..... you'll dump completely when you leave the full hookup and then boondock for one night.

While you're on the full hookup I assume you're keeping your black water valve closed until ready to dump at 3/4 to full tank.

You can judge depending on your usage but perhaps keep both the grey & black closed for about 3 days at your full hookup site or how many days it takes to get at least 1/2-3/4 full and don't dump either tank when you leave.

Go to the boondocking spot for the one night to continue filling the tanks.

Find your dump station and dump the black first. Leave the valve open. Either from your fresh water tank or from the dump station's faucet, fill a bucket with water and dump to in your toilet. Repeat as often as you can.... easier if you can put the bucket in your shower and fill from there from your fresh water tank.... dump 3-4 buckets into the toilet. This will clean the bottom of your tank good and it will run right out because your outside valve is open.

Then dump your grey tank.

Close both valves. Go inside and dump another two or three buckets of water into your black tank. Add some squirts of Dawn dish soap. This would cover the bottom of your black tank. You could also run some water down a drain to cover the bottom of your grey tank Grey water can smell worse than black water..... if you continuously leave your grey water valve open at the campsite any food or grease will not be cleaned from the bottom of your tank. It will be accumulating. By adding some fresh water and some Dawn dish soap before storage and letting it sit it will help to loosen all that gunk from your grey tank.

Then drive home and the tanks will be sloshing around for some additional cleaning with the soapy water. You don't have to have immaculate tanks! Storing for only a month isn't going to be an issue. Add a chemical if that makes you feel better.

Then drain your fresh water tank at home or at the storage facility.
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Old 06-17-2020, 12:40 PM   #12
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Thanks for the help. The dump process I have conquered . Itís the second and third flush that Iím concerned about. As long as there is a rinse hose that I can use, Iíll be fine. Our MH will sit in storage for about a month after the trip so I donít want to just dump the black tank once and believe itís enough. Iíve always had sewer and water at our campgrounds so I havenít had to think about about going to a dump station.
I carry a 50ft garden hose to use for my black tank flushing.
A side note. If youre only going to be boondocking for one day, you could just leave the tanks alone and dump them next time you get to a site. I take my RV duck hunting most winter and I dont dump the tanks all winter. I live in california though so I dont really have to worry about the tanks freezing or anything in the winter.

As long as your system is sealed properly you should not have any issue with smell.
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Old 06-17-2020, 04:25 PM   #13
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If I have this right..... you'll dump completely when you leave the full hookup and then boondock for one night.

While you're on the full hookup I assume you're keeping your black water valve closed until ready to dump at 3/4 to full tank.
This explains my question perfectly. I was concerned about flushing 1 day of black tank, even if I added water to it.

Thanks for the suggestions!
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Old 06-17-2020, 04:47 PM   #14
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We solved the boon docking tank issues with a portable macerator pump that uses a 3/4" garden hose that I insert into the house cleanout or toilet.

It's sold on-line and most RV supply stores. Saves having to wait in line at a dump station too. Some folks spend an inordinate amount of time at the dump station clearing their tanks. It's almost hilarious the monkey motion they go through.

It's made by flojet and works great and is pretty fast at clearing out the tanks.

Before we leave, we put water and enzyme chemicals in the black tank, add lots of water. By the time we get home it's all liquefied and ready to go.
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