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Old 09-30-2011, 12:51 AM   #1
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Agh... mold chunks in the fresh water tank... HELP!!!!

I just purchased a Rockwood 2280 pop up from a man who said he never used the fresh water tank in the 5 or 6 years he had it. Now I can see why! I read on this forum how to sanitize the tank and was going to take it for a 3 day spin. As I ran the water pump, I noticed large chunks of black ... something ... coming from the faucet! I looked down the filler tube and saw spots of mold in the tube (or whatever you call it). I looked under the camper to see if the tank was visible. Lo and behold, it is and the 80% of the bottom of the tank is BLACK on the inside!!! Can anyone tell me how hard it would be to remove and replace the tank and filler tube attached to the side of the camper? And how do I do it? This is my project and so it would be just my daughter and I working on the camper. Taking it to a dealer for the replacement labor is not an option. Please educate me. Thanks in advance, Jo Ann
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Old 09-30-2011, 08:29 AM   #2
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Jo Ann,

While your problem may be "acute" the issue you are dealing with has a simple (but time consuming) answer. You need to flush and sanitize your fresh water tank several times.

Everyone has to do this every year to prevent the issue you are experiencing. The solution you use should just be twice as strong and remain in the tank twice as long as the annual treatment. I don't think replacement is "required" (though the water might taste better in the long run). Plug the end of the supply hose and repeat until the lines are clear.

If you are not happy about the result, replacement of your tank and lines may be your only option.
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Old 09-30-2011, 08:49 AM   #3
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Like Lou said, Clorox bleach is your friend.
I'd flush it once with clean water and then do a couple sanitize cycles.

What you're finding is probably either mildew or algae.
Both can be taken care of with chlorine bleach.

Add a cup of bleach and fill the tank to the top.
Let it sit for an hour and then drain and do it again.
The 2nd time once it's full run your pump and open all faucets
one at a time. Remove any faucet air-raters if you can as they may
clog with debris.

Once you've got it cleaned fill and flush with plain city water.
That should remove the chlorine smell. A slight chlorine smell won't
hurt you.

IF you are leery of drinking from your tap get a blue water tote jug
called Aqua-tainer by Reliance. These can usually be found in the
RV/camping isle of major dept stores.
They come in 2 sizes.
We have both and use them on occasion for our coffee and drinking
water but sometimes we just drink from the tap in our trailer.

Don't forget to flush the hot water heater if you have one.

PS- A cut in half washing machine water hose makes 2 great water tank
fill hoses. Often a garden hose won't fit in the fill opening but a hose
with just a plain cut end will fit. I replaced my washing machine hoses
with stainless steel braided hoses and saved the old black rubber hoses.
They come in handy for filling buckets from a faucet or attached to
my garden hose I can easily fill my tank.

You can also remove the drain plug from your water heater and stick
one of these cut hoses in there to flush it out.
Good Luck!
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:23 AM   #4
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I would also suggest driving it around while full of chlorinated water. The sloshing serves to break loose some of the matter.
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:52 AM   #5
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I work at the local water company. That black yuk may mean the system went septic and its dangerous to your health (Use mask with a good filter and gloves) To truly disinfect a water system you have to apply a solution of 200 PPM CL2 (Chlorine). This is a disinfection process by contact, let that solution stand for about 15 minutes and make sure to run the water thru the entire system for wait times then flush the entire system. If you want a milder solution you can make a solution of 50 PPM CL2 and that should be in the system for 24 hours for a disinfection of the system. After you do either method you need to flush the system till you have the same CL2 levels as the domestic public water supply in the system. One way to see how much residual you have is use a aquarium test strips, we have very accurate measurement kits to work with. Maybe contact a local water provider person to run a test. If they are not immediately available you can get a sample bottle to run test. If you have a sample bottle (The empty bottle is sealed and has a set amount of chemical to get rid of CL2 for a water test, you have to fill the bottle to a certain fill line). When you get a sample it should be tested with in 18 hours and kept on ice the entire time. oh you can use Clorox or swimming pool powered chlorine to mix up the batch.

For that nasty mold looking stuff you need to make sure you remove and replace a NEW filter after cleaning. Personally I would discard the filter during the cleaning process and flush your system till its good and clean.

You could also apply the 200 PPM CL2 just in the tank to get rid of the black stuff and flush the tank thru the tank drain till its clean, then clean the piping / filter systems. Don't forget to run the solution thru your water heater.

The 200 PPM CL2 is very strong and do not leave it in the tank. It use is to disinfect your tanks and lines, do not let it sit for a long time as the strong solution can attack plastics and rubber products so 15 minutes and flush very good. It kills all bacteria and its very effective.

Chuck
PAE
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Old 10-02-2011, 10:59 AM   #6
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That's really technical. Most folks won't have a test kit nor want to run
out and purchase one.

Regular Clorox bleach is 8% chlorine.
How many cups would be needed to raise the chlorine level in a 25 gallon
water tank to the recommended 200 Parts per million
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Old 10-02-2011, 12:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KyDan View Post
That's really technical. Most folks won't have a test kit nor want to run
out and purchase one.

Regular Clorox bleach is 8% chlorine.
How many cups would be needed to raise the chlorine level in a 25 gallon
water tank to the recommended 200 Parts per million
I'm not the best at math but 200PPM = 0.02% solution. ppm is used to determine a very low concentration of a solution.
Ppm (parts per million) to % (parts per hundred)

Example:

1 ppm = 1/1,000,000 = 0.000001 = 0.0001%
10 ppm = 10/1,000,000 = 0.00001 = 0.001%
100 ppm = 100/1,000,000 = 0.0001 = 0.01%
200 ppm = 200/1,000,000 = 0.0002 = 0.02%
5000 ppm = 5000/1,000,000 = 0.005 = 0.5%
10,000 ppm = 10000/1,000,000 = 0.01 = 1.0%
20,000 ppm = 20000/1,000,000 = 0.02 = 2.0%


Here is a link if you want to know more on ppm conversions:
PARTS PER MILLION CONVERSIONS
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Old 10-02-2011, 12:57 PM   #8
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Got It! Click on Table 8.4 below
3 pints Chlorine Bleach per 100 gallons of water.

Since my fresh water tank is about 50 gallons, 1.5 pints of Clorox will do it. NEVER pour Clorox straight from the bottle into your tank. Adding water afterwards could liberate enough heat of solution to melt a hole in your tank. ALWAYS add concentrate to water. Fill your fresh tank about half full of WATER.

WEAR RUBBER GLOVES, old clothes, and a FACE SHIELD.
You do not want to splash Clorox into your eyes.

Then fill a 5 gallon bucket with about 4 gallons (or whatever you can easily lift) of water. Add the required amount of bleach to the 5 gallon bucket of water. Then using a funnel, pour it into your fresh tank.

Top off the tank with water and then power up your pump and open taps one at a time waiting till you smell the chlorine (and boy will you). Turn off that tap and go to the next one. Don't forget the hot water heater valves need to be open (but the heat turned off).

Disinfection of Water Supplies
Water supplies can be disinfected by a variety of methods including chlorination, ozonation, ultraviolet radiation, heat, and iodination. The advantages and disadvantages of each method are noted in Table 8.3.

The understanding of certain terms is necessary in talking about chlorination. Table_8.4 is a chlorination guide for specific water conditions.




Chlorine is the most commonly used water disinfectant. It is available in liquid, powder, gas, and tablet form. Chlorine gas is often used for municipal water disinfection, but can be hazardous if mishandled. Recommended liquid, powder, and tablet forms of chlorine include the following:
  • Liquid—Chlorine laundry bleach (about 5% chlorine). Swimming pool disinfectant or concentrated chlorine bleach (12%–17% chlorine).
  • Powder—Chlorinated lime (25% chlorine), dairy sanitizer (30% chlorine), and high-test calcium hypochlorite (65%–75% chlorine).
  • Tablets—High-test calcium hypochlorite (65%–75% chlorine).
  • Gas—Gas chlorine is an economical and convenient way to use large amounts of chlorine. It is stored in steel cylinders ranging in size from 100 to 2,000 pounds. The packager fills these cylinders with liquid chlorine to approximately 85% of their total volume; the remaining 15% is occupied by chlorine gas. These ratios are required to prevent tank rupture at high temperatures. It is important that direct sunlight never reaches gas cylinders. It is also important that the user of chlorine knows the maximum withdrawal rate of gas per day per cylinder. For example, the maximum withdrawal rate from a 150-pound cylinder is approximately 40 pounds per day at room temperature discharging to atmospheric pressure.
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Old 10-02-2011, 01:10 PM   #9
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Based on Herks post the table show's @5% chlorine bleach 100 gal. needs 3 pints to reach 200 ppm. So in 33 gal. we need 1 pint or 2 cups to get 200ppm in 33.3 gals. water

I had a guy I know run the numbers based on 8% and it is 1 cup of 8% chlorine bleach for 25 gals.
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Old 10-03-2011, 08:53 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acableguy06 View Post
I had a guy I know run the numbers based on 8% and it is 1 cup of 8% chlorine bleach for 25 gals.
THAT's what I said in the first place
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