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Old 09-10-2010, 04:30 PM   #1
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Question Odour after third time dumping

This past weekend was the 3rd trip w/ the Rockwood. Immediately after dumping there was a strange smell in the trailer. My buddy kind of panicked me as there was a trailer waiting for us. So I'm not sure if I added any fresh water into the BW tank for the trip home.

When I did get home Tues' night, I added a gallon of water & a packet of deodorant. Yesterday I went to a local provincial park & added water to the tank & dumped twice. This morning the smell was still there, so I added another packet & gallon of water.

The previous 2 trips the toilet was used & the BW tank dumped. There was no smell even before I added a couple of gallons of water & the deodorant. This trip was w/ a buddy who has an "overactive metabolism" (to put it mildly) & is new to RV toilets, so I wonder if I may have an accumulation of waste on the bottom of the BW tank? In the future on race weekends, he may have to use the track facilities if my next trip has a problem free dump.

I'm hoping to get rid of this smell & take 1 more trip before I winterize.
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:10 PM   #2
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Any suggestions as to how I can get rid of the smell? It's 3 days after the fill & flush. I don't have nearby access to a dump site here.

Would adding bleach to the BW tank help kill the smell?

BTW, there was no smell in the trailer before the tanks were dumped.
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:05 AM   #3
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Any possibility that the smell may be coming from the grey tank? If any of your traps on the sink or shower have dried out the odor will filter into the trailer. They can smell just as bad after a while. Fill the traps with water and some deodorizer and see if it helps. Just another possibility!
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:36 AM   #4
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Another thought. On our second last trip the trailer started to smell after we returned home. I'd assume the likely culprit was the black tank exhaust venting back into the trailer. While prepping/cleaning for our next trip we discovered some food waste on some plates in the sink hiding under the cutting board. Wasn't much there but it didn't take much I guess. One of the down falls of lunching on the side of the road while travelling I guess.
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:48 AM   #5
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Check the vent under the kitchen sink and bath sink.(located above the traps) usually a breather on the ABS piping which has a very unreliable rubber seal. As soon as I smell the odour I can bet it is coming from either of those vents. Dumping seems to dislodge the seal. (grey water holding tanks)
Can't for the life of me understand that this is allowed as it is a PITA.
Every trailer I have owned has had this problem
As long as there is water in the toilet bowl I doubt any smell could originate from black water tank
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Old 09-13-2010, 08:00 AM   #6
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Add Calgon to the black tank and fill it at least 3/4 full. Tow it a few miles. This will slosh the solution around inside the tank. Let the trailer set for a couple hours. Drain and flush the tank(do you have a tank rinser installed?). Add at least 3 gallons water and your regular tank chemicals.

The solution, when regularly used, will help prevent solids from building up on the tank bottom and walls.
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Old 09-13-2010, 09:22 AM   #7
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Mike, I had dumped a Calgon solution in the TT after I had gotten home.

Dezolen, I religiously make sure that there's water in the bowl. Talking to my brother last night, he asked me that as well. I guess if that "seal" is in place it's pretty hard for smells to escape from the black tank.

I've just run some water into all the sinks & the shower. I'll check later today for the smell test & will report back.
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Old 09-13-2010, 11:33 AM   #8
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Must be from those pesky vents near the sinks in the cabinets then. They can be unscrewed and replaced.
If you open lower cabinet door is smell stronger?
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Old 09-13-2010, 12:38 PM   #9
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I had the same problem not long ago, I kept flushing and dumping and the odor was still there and the water was coming out clear, so I connected a hose to the campground water supply with no regulator on it (full Force) and stuck the hose in the toilet with the black water tank valve open and flushed out the black tank that way and you would not believe how much stuff was held back because of the toilet paper and it work, odor was gone I can only guess that the sides of the tank was holding all of that stuff and I was not able to clear the tank completely, I now do this about every week, this is some thing to try it work for me.
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dezolen View Post
Check the vent under the kitchen sink and bath sink.(located above the traps) usually a breather on the ABS piping which has a very unreliable rubber seal. As soon as I smell the odour I can bet it is coming from either of those vents. Dumping seems to dislodge the seal. (grey water holding tanks)
Can't for the life of me understand that this is allowed as it is a PITA.
Every trailer I have owned has had this problem
As long as there is water in the toilet bowl I doubt any smell could originate from black water tank
I checked the vents after supper & they seem to be OK. There isn't any smell coming from the sink drains either, but you can smell the odour in the TT.

W/ the roof vents open & the fan (in the bath) on, there is no smell. I've closed the vents for overnight. After a few minutes, the odour is back. A couple of Renuzit blocks cover the smell, but the smell shouldn't be there in the 1st place. The odour is not as bad as it was before.
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:51 PM   #11
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i've been going thru this myself here is what I've...

found. the toilet seal to the black tank was bad. its a $5 fix plus 1 hour if you take your time. the local RV mechanic suggested that 10yrs is very old for a seal. Most don't make it nearly that long. I'm not sure if this is your problem but it sound just like mine.

I was surprised that the toilet is hollow and the black tank "vopors" for lack of a better term are inside the toilet. No, the water in the bottom of the bowl isn't the only thing keeping the smell at bay. there is a rubber seal around the perimeter between the top of the bowl and the cover. the cover is what you see when you lift the lid/seat. if that seal goes bad, the "vopors" can leak there. there are a bunch of screws that hold this cover to the bowl. Also, where the water enters the bowl is another penetration that could leak the vapors. Under mine is two cheap plastic hoses that could break. One of these hoses is for the water to enter the bowl and the other goes from the water port in the bowl to a port just above the black tank hole. It seems that this will put some water into the tank with every flush.

Oh yeh, the inside of the toilet was contaminated with, well you know, the stuff that should be in the tank. I tried to clean out the toilet, but it wouldn't budge. If the wife would see that, I would have to buy another potty.

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Old 09-13-2010, 07:59 PM   #12
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My Rockwood is 2 years old (bought new a year ago) & has been used on 3 occasions.

The odour doesn't seem to be that bad in the bathroom, more so out in the rest of the trailer.
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Old 09-14-2010, 11:47 PM   #13
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This sounds like a silly question, but when you dumped was the tank reading full? Was each dump after that also with a tank reading full? You obviously shouldn't be smelling anything but, if your not dumping a full tank you'd be surprised at how much will be left in the tank.

If you have not had a chance to read about the"Geo Method" of maintaing your black tank I would try starting there. I would also advise getting a "Flush King".

I had been camping recently at a state park with electric only. When it came time to leave we proceeded to dump as normal but, since there was no hose connection we couldn't use our Flush King. We belived we did an excellent job flushing the black tank.

Our next trip was a full hook up KOA. I back filled with the Flush King just out of curiosity and dumped as soon as we where set up. I wanted to see if anything was left from last trip. I was shocked to say the least.
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Old 09-15-2010, 04:46 AM   #14
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Why would there be any more left in the tank if it were less than full when dumped? We dump whenever we are leaving a CG if there is more than 1/4 of a tank. We dump then flush and have had any problem.
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Old 09-15-2010, 09:52 AM   #15
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There are many threads here about why you should never dump a partially full black tank. The short answer is that it takes a long time to break down solids and paper. They have a tendency to "stick" to the floor and walls of the tank; especially directly under the hopper. The drop point is also in the vicinity of the wall sensors in most installations and paper drooping on the sensor heads is the most likely cause of false tank readings.

Calgon water softener added before you use the tank is supposed to limit the sticking of solids to the bottom and sides of the tank. (My experience with this is positive)

You need a "large volume" of water to sweep that crud out of the tank along with any undissolved paper. The corporate knowledge is to fill the tank till at least the full light comes on (about 2/3 full) before you actually pull the handle to ensure a complete dump.

The flush/rinse system on most installations just shoots water at the wall opposite the sensors. It is located at the top of the tank and most likely will not do much to clean your top sensors or loosen stuck crud unless you let it fill the tank a couple of times.

Photo of black tank and location of white "turboflush" line can be seen in this photo:

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Old 09-15-2010, 09:56 AM   #16
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When I've dumped the grey tank, the indicator has shown that it's 2/3s full. I'm hoping to go on a short trip next week. I'll make sure both tanks are full (adding water if necesssary) before dumping. The TT will be winterized afterwards.
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Old 09-19-2010, 05:38 PM   #17
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We're off tomorrow for 3 nights @ Arrowhead PP north of Huntsville. Yesterday, I topped up the grey & black tanks & will dump when I get there. I'll make sure the tanks are full before I dump when we leave.

The odour has pretty much left the trailer. Hopefully I won't have the same problems this week.
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Old 09-23-2010, 07:55 PM   #18
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I've got good news to report. I dumped the tanks when we arrived & had no smells thru the week.

Today I added water to bring the levels up to 2/3s then dumped. Since I was going to be passing thru Algonquin PP on the way home (& could use their RV dump as well) I added 10 gallons of water & some dish soap to the black tank. I dumped again & flushed w/ some more water.

Again, no odours inside the trailer. I'm hoping the odour after the Indy trip was just a fluke.

As soon as I get my RV antifreeze, I'll be winterizing the trailer.
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Old 09-23-2010, 08:11 PM   #19
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Definitely sounds like the inline vent had unseated under the sink. I just picked a new one up at Home Depot where the plumping guy asked me if I wanted the legal CSA approved one @ 29$ or the un CSA approved one for $7.00. The $7.00 one is identical to the one in my trailer. (1 under the kitchen sink and another under the bath sink)
So much for the Canadian CSA approval sticker which adds aprox $300 to cost of so called Canadian approved trailer.
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