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Old 06-20-2014, 09:37 PM   #1
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Wow, I got my black tank lights cleaned off.....

My 3170 Sunseeker has a "tank washing" outlet, but I have found that it's pretty useless.

I'm parked in Iowa (working at Adventureland for minimum wage, fun fun fun!!!) and for the last two weeks, I have been dumping both my tanks daily. The park I'm at probably doesn't appreciate it, but heck, if I weren't parked there, they would have someone in and out daily anyway, the way I look at it.....

So, after I dump my tanks, I add some water to the black, and when I'm brushing my teeth, I put my foot on the toilet pedal and add some more water while I'm brushing my teeth (no, I do NOT use the toilet to brush my teeth!!!!). Doing this reduces the sink faucet to just a trickle, but just a trickle is all I need to brush my teeth. Further, when I run the air conditioner, I put a rubbermaid tub on the ground to catch the condensation, then I dump THAT into the toilet. Thus, I'm putting a LOT of "clear" water in the toilet.

Been doing this for two weeks, and WOW, my black tank lights are all cleaned off!

My gray water tank lights are still a mess, but the trick I found that works is.....

Leave your gray valve open for... oh... a week or whatever until you need to dump your black. Then, shut your gray and let it fill, then dump both tanks. I cannot do this currently because I'm dumping my black tank every day. But when I go back to this method to clean the gray, I'll be back to messed up black tank valves.
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Old 06-20-2014, 09:49 PM   #2
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Or you can save all that fuss of dumping tanks everyday and wasting water and install Horst Probes: Horst Miracle Probes for Wastewater Tanks in Recreational Vehicles RVs
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Old 06-20-2014, 09:57 PM   #3
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Or you can save all that fuss of dumping tanks everyday and wasting water and install Horst Probes: Horst Miracle Probes for Wastewater Tanks in Recreational Vehicles RVs
OR, forget the @#$%^ lights. We leave all 3 tanks closed and empty every 3 or 4 days. Our lights never were correct when both trailers were brand new and had nothing in them but water. I wouldn't waste the time putting new probes in if they were free, but that's just my opinion of them.
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Old 06-24-2014, 06:08 AM   #4
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OR.......fill up your black tank partially with fresh water when it is empty and drive around and dump it at next opportunity.....Or by the probe cleaner and add some of that. Our probes work perfectly well....Do you use the flush while you are dumping?
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Old 06-24-2014, 06:14 AM   #5
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OR.......fill up your black tank partially with fresh water when it is empty and drive around and dump it at next opportunity.....Or by the probe cleaner and add some of that. Our probes work perfectly well....Do you use the flush while you are dumping?
X 2 I add Dollar Store detergent, 33 cent a treatment and run the tank flusher at home. Clean as a clean can be!
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Old 06-24-2014, 06:17 AM   #6
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Old 06-24-2014, 06:22 AM   #7
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While most everyone complains about erroneous black tank indicators, the gray tank comes with its own st of problems.

Gray tank probes foul with soap, long hair, food particles, cooking oils, etc.

The Horst probe the recommend for the gray tank is particularly suited to being fouled by long hair. (A spiral on the end of the probe). When I need to replace mine, I will put black tank probes in there as well.

I had good luck using the Calgon/detergent mix in the gray tank and a "longish" treatment with RV-Digest-It would have eaten up the hair eventually. I could not wait, so I replaced the probes. Once I saw what my problem was, I now have a set of black tank probes "on the shelf."

This issue did not appear until we camped with our long haired DD for a few weeks.
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Old 06-24-2014, 06:35 AM   #8
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I have been told by many campers for years FIRST you NEVER leave your tanks open the fumes can cause health problems. SECOND dumping everyday especially the black tank isn't enough time for stuff to break down and it may stick to your tank and cause build up.
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Old 06-24-2014, 06:44 AM   #9
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I have been told by many campers for years FIRST you NEVER leave your tanks open the fumes can cause health problems. SECOND dumping everyday especially the black tank isn't enough time for stuff to break down and it may stick to your tank and cause build up.
The black tank "stuff" does not "break down" very much at all because the black tank is not a septic tank. It is a holding tank and is designed to be dumped when 3/4 full (regardless of how long that takes).

If you think about it, do you wait 3 -7 days after the last time you used "the facility" to dump your black tank? Of course not; so the most recent stuff will never have enough time to be digested by enzymes and bacteria.

Dump when 3/4 full and turbo-flush as often as you can. Pre-treat the holding tank with detergent, a few gallons of water, and water softener after every dump and you will have squeaky clean and odor free holding tanks.

I do a "septic" cleaning once a year when I winterize using RV-Digest-It with a full tank of water and a 7 day wait.
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Old 06-24-2014, 07:07 AM   #10
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Thanks for the info Herk!!
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Old 06-24-2014, 07:20 AM   #11
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I have been told by many campers for years FIRST you NEVER leave your tanks open the fumes can cause health problems.
I also keep my valves closed (both gray and black) dumping only when full (or we are leaving hookups) because leaving them open allows the solids in both type of tanks time to dry out and become harder to flush out.

You should never "smell" tank odors inside the camper even with the valves open since the tanks are vented to the roof and the water above the toilet valve and water in the gray traps keeps fumes from entering the camper.

Fumes in the camper at any time (valves open or closed) means you should find out where the leak is. Many times "sloshing" during travel will empty the shower trap and allow (stinky) gray tank fumes to enter via the shower drain. Simply add a cup of water to the shower pan to stop the smell.

Also using the vent fan when using the "facility" can draw odors (valve open or closed) up through the toilet when flushing with a nearly full tank. Shut off the fan when flushing and turn it back on when you are done.
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Old 06-24-2014, 07:26 AM   #12
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Just dumping the grey tanks can suck the P traps dry. When you open a dump valve, it simply overcomes the roof vents and sucks the water out of the traps. Herk is correct, just pour a cup of water in each drain.
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Old 06-24-2014, 07:49 AM   #13
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Thank you, I didn't know to add the water back to the drains to stop the smell, we do have that after we dump sometimes.
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Old 06-24-2014, 07:57 AM   #14
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I do a "septic" cleaning once a year when I winterize using RV-Digest-It with a full tank of water and a 7 day wait.
Herk

I need to add that to my winterizing process. I thought I did a good job cleaning the tanks last year since I was at it for a couple of hours filling, dumping, flushing, repeat, until dumping a full tank appeared crystal clear. During the spring sanitize I dumped most of the FW bleach into the black tank, drove it to the campground... and was surprised I was still getting TP and stuff flushing out despite my cleaning efforts in the fall.
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