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Old 07-10-2014, 12:36 PM   #1
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Using Ice to clean the Black Holding Tank?

I see so many people, most of whom are smarter and more experienced than me, recommending putting ice in the black tank to aid in cleaning it so I did a little experiment. Most recommend a 10 lb. bag. I think the smallest black tank I've seen is 25 gal. so I put 2 gal. of water in a bucket then added 1 lb. of ice to simulate the ratio. I stirred the water to simulate driving. All the ice was melted in less than 3 minutes. I'm sure this time will vary depending upon the temperature of the water. Anyway, after conduction this extremely scientific experiment I have concluded that unless you use much more ice, perhaps a one to two ratio, and put it in while moving or immediately before leaving, this method is useless. Also, ice will not remove the film on the sides of the tank that ground out the sensors to give a false reading. I have found only one solution to false holding tank readings.
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Old 07-10-2014, 12:43 PM   #2
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I've used the ice cleaning, but never added water, just 20/30 lbs of ice with dry tanks and one pack of your fav tank chemical. Drive to the camp site and fill the black tank with water and dump. The purpose was to knock down any poop pile building under the toilet. I wouldn't think it was going to do anything about the sensors. Most of the time I emptied my home ice maker into the tank, so no real cost and didn't think it would hurt anything either.
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Old 07-10-2014, 01:07 PM   #3
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Hello... Your speriment is PROLLY way better than the red-neck trial and error method I used.... but my black tank showed full the time. I dumped in some ice... drove somewhere...taadaaa. Empty tank. Maybe the Lord help my lil ole' trialer... or He just felt sorry for me. Happy camping.
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Old 07-10-2014, 01:30 PM   #4
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Try convincing DW to add ice while you drag TT though the mountains. Mine wouldn't go for it.
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Old 07-10-2014, 02:03 PM   #5
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Remember, 10 lbs. of ice equals about 5 quarts of water.
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Old 07-10-2014, 02:25 PM   #6
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Blank Tank cleaning

One thing I have never seen mentioned is the use of Rock Salt, the kind they put on the roads and in an old hand cranked ice cream maker. A dealer that we had at our FMCA meets swore by it and several members tried it and had good results. I never did and can't remember the formula, but a little research might come up with it. It would clean the tank (looking down the toilet) like new. A good flush would be mandatory afterwards.
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Old 07-10-2014, 02:33 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leland1950 View Post
One thing I have never seen mentioned is the use of Rock Salt, the kind they put on the roads and in an old hand cranked ice cream maker. A dealer that we had at our FMCA meets swore by it and several members tried it and had good results. I never did and can't remember the formula, but a little research might come up with it. It would clean the tank (looking down the toilet) like new. A good flush would be mandatory afterwards.
From ehow (not sure if we can post external links):

Instructions
1
Connect a dump hose to the dump system, and open the black water dump valve to drain the black tank. Close the valve when the dumping process is complete.

2
Add 3 pounds of salt to each gallon of water to be added to the black water tank. Typically, 1 to 2 gallons of water is used to winterize the tank. Ensure that all the salt is dissolved in the water, before you add the saltwater to the black water tank.

3
Add 1 to 2 gallons of salt-saturated water to the black water tank. Salt saturated water will lower the freezing point to approximately -6 degrees Fahrenheit (-21 degrees Celsius).

4
Add other chemicals required for black water tank maintenance. Aqua Kem, Camco, Exodor and QT RV Tank Treatment all provide products that deodorize, breakdown waste and reduce solids.

EDIT: Actually I think this is more for winterizing?
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Old 07-11-2014, 05:47 AM   #8
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I have done it with more ice. An older man said to add bleach to coat the tank. Bleach on plastic is slippery.

Previous TT it would normally make the sensors work again. I don't even use them anymore. I have my time of dumping and cleaning depending on use and heat.

Maybe it will help. There is a thread about a special Rid X for the tanks.


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Old 07-11-2014, 06:45 AM   #9
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I agree; with what I have learned about the electronics and sensors; the ice method is next to useless.

The salt method is even more dangerous because it will corrode the sensors and change the restistance of the circuit needed to make the display work at all.
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Old 07-11-2014, 06:59 AM   #10
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Do a search here for the GEO method to clean your tanks.
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