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Old 02-21-2018, 01:15 PM   #1
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Brand New Trailer Sewage Smell!

Hello!
We just bought a Rockwood Mini. It is our first travel trailer. My husband brought it home Sunday and everything was great. The next morning, however, it had a distinct sewage smell. My daughter said she had accidentally bumped the kitchen sink faucet and about one cup of water came out before she turned it off. We believe this is what initiated the smell into the inside. So, my husband flushed out the tanks and vented the entire trailer. It still smells!!!
Is this normal? I expected to do all the maintenance and cleaning to prevent any odors but why would it smell if nobody had used anything and owned it less than 24 hours?? Will I be fighting this smell the entire time we own it??
HELP!!!!
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Old 02-21-2018, 01:25 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Sasquatch2 View Post
Hello!
We just bought a Rockwood Mini. It is our first travel trailer. My husband brought it home Sunday and everything was great. The next morning, however, it had a distinct sewage smell. My daughter said she had accidentally bumped the kitchen sink faucet and about one cup of water came out before she turned it off. We believe this is what initiated the smell into the inside. So, my husband flushed out the tanks and vented the entire trailer. It still smells!!!
Is this normal? I expected to do all the maintenance and cleaning to prevent any odors but why would it smell if nobody had used anything and owned it less than 24 hours?? Will I be fighting this smell the entire time we own it??
HELP!!!!
Sice you are smelling sewage I have to assume you bought this used but your tittle says brand new so I confused. If new, somebody some where must have had to go. If it was sitting on a lot for a long time the p-traps in your trailer could very well be dry. Many gray water tanks do indeed smell like sewage. If new, you could be smelling some construction materials such as glue and fabric smells that will go away. Run some water, more than a cup, thru all your sink and shower drains. Some air freshener and some open windows should take care if it.
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Old 02-21-2018, 01:46 PM   #3
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What cavie says is all possible but there is also a chance that one of the pipe joints are either not glued or not even properly inserted. We had the p-trap under the kitchen sink come apart once on a brand new trailer. In your case the only way to find out is to thoroughly inspect every pipe and joint front to back, including the vent pipe on the black tank.
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Old 02-21-2018, 02:12 PM   #4
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It is brand new, just off the lot. That is why I don't understand the smell. I didn't know if this is typical until the lines and tanks are flushed out? I assume there is no way to get a visual on the tanks/lines. Or if I should fight the dealership on this and have them look into it.
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Old 02-21-2018, 02:15 PM   #5
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What cavie says is all possible but there is also a chance that one of the pipe joints are either not glued or not even properly inserted. We had the p-trap under the kitchen sink come apart once on a brand new trailer. In your case the only way to find out is to thoroughly inspect every pipe and joint front to back, including the vent pipe on the black tank.
Ok, good to know. Thanks! We will check out the p trap to make sure everything is secure. I hope it is something simple because I don't really want to drive it back out to the dealer and fight that uphill battle.
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Old 02-21-2018, 02:47 PM   #6
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Also, ensure there is water in the p-traps.

Since it is new, there really shouldn't be anything in the holding tanks, unless the techs decided to "try" everything on the trailer.

Not for the feint of heart. Do you get the same smell, if you open the toilet valve? If so, then someone likely used it. Also, one of my TTs had a bad seal on the toilet, which let the smell back into the trailer. Dometic actually sent a new toilet to the dealer and they replaced it for me.

Lastly, get the Siphon 360 vent cover(s). They do an excellent job of removing the smells from the tanks, so they don't find their way in elsewhere. I don't know if you'll need two or just one. Our Crusader has all of the tanks going into one vent.
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Old 02-21-2018, 03:11 PM   #7
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Is your kitchen sink faucet a pull out sprayer type ??? They have a hose under the sink and when water sits in the hose it gets a sewer smell. When we bought ours new it did this also. Water sat in the hose on the dealer lot for months before we bought it. Factory does water test these units before shipping and will have some water left in them. I had to put a bleach mixture in my fresh water tank and pump it thru system and let it sit for a few days then flush out with clean water to get rid of the smell. I now make sure when we park it for awhile I pull out the sprayer and drain hose.
I have also seen this is our house sink sprayer when water sits in it along time. Something about the hose material makes it smell like sewer.
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Old 02-21-2018, 03:14 PM   #8
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Also welcome to the forum
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Old 02-21-2018, 03:24 PM   #9
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Maybe there shouldn't buuut . . . Last fall my sister and brother-in-law switched from a pop-up to a class C. (Having been a girl scout she never hooked up water to the pop up.) I showed them how to winterize it. Since it was a brand new unit I didn't expect about 3 gallons of water and stench to pour out. Fortunately it was only liquid. I think perhaps some salesmen and or customers may not have walked to a functioning restroom.
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Old 02-21-2018, 03:38 PM   #10
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Before you start pulling toilets and replacing roof vents, it is very possible the smell came from the water your daughter ran into the sink.
Often times, untreated well water can smell like rotten eggs/sewer.

You didn't mention how you were using the trailer once you got home.
Were you hooked up to your own city water source or was the pump on when your daughter ran the water?

While I would hope not, it is entirely possible the dealer could have put some bad water in the fresh tank when they tested the plumbing for leaks.
Have you tried to run any additional water from the faucet and sample the smell.
Have you drained any water from the fresh tank drain to sample?

You really should drain and sanitize the fresh tank anyway on a new unit.

Too many unanswered questions for us to give you the exact cause.
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Old 02-21-2018, 03:46 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sasquatch2 View Post
Hello!
We just bought a Rockwood Mini. It is our first travel trailer. My husband brought it home Sunday and everything was great. The next morning, however, it had a distinct sewage smell. My daughter said she had accidentally bumped the kitchen sink faucet and about one cup of water came out before she turned it off. We believe this is what initiated the smell into the inside. So, my husband flushed out the tanks and vented the entire trailer. It still smells!!!
Is this normal? I expected to do all the maintenance and cleaning to prevent any odors but why would it smell if nobody had used anything and owned it less than 24 hours?? Will I be fighting this smell the entire time we own it??
HELP!!!!
We posted this a couple of years ago and maybe this will help, if you don't find a solution.
V-Lite black water tank vents
This is our discovery, if anyone is having the same problem. We kept adding chemicals and that did not help! Here is our solutions


HOLDING TANK ODOR IN TRAILER
(with ample black water chemicals)

Camping in Florida's 90 degree weather brings out odors. We noticed a strong odor in the bathroom after three days on our V-Lite with a front bathroom. Following my nose it was a weak odor in the bedroom and stronger in the bathroom. Opening the sink cabinet almost knocked me out. The odor was strongest on the left side where the sink drain runs through the wall in a hole 50% larger than the pipe.

Turning on the bathroom fan seemed to clear the odor in the bathroom but it got stronger in the bedroom. I suspected the sewer holding tank vent was cracked or the seal was defective. From the outside, I noticed the vent pipe runs up the bedroom wall and through the roof, RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE VENT FAN!

Back home, I took the bedroom wall down and found the hole through the roof and floor 50% larger than the pipe and no sealer. We drained the holding tanks before leaving the campground. At home, we over-filled the tank to make sure the vent pipe seal on the tank was OK. It was fine. Moving to the roof, I dug out the caulking on the vent pipe cap screw. Removing the screw and pulling the cap off exposed the source of the odor. The vent pipe was cut short and was below the roof cap top ring where it is supposed to seal around the pipe. So the STINK goes up the pipe and fills the roof cap and then down into the bedroom/bathroom wall and follows the drain pipe to the bathroom cabinet.

Whoever installed the roof cap knew the pipe was short and would not seal against the pipe. The cap was not even centered on the vent pipe. I checked the other two vent caps. The kitchen galley tank vent cap was OK but the shower waste water cap was the same as the sewer cap, short cut and off center. And why would anybody place a sewer vent right in front of a vent fan?

SOLUTIONS: The vent/drain holes through the roof, floor and walls were all sealed with spray foam. The gap around the roof cap and the vent pipe was filled with foam to overflowing and the vent hole inside the pipe was cut out with a knife. The cap was replaced and the screw caulked up.

For most owners with this problem, fixing the roof vent cap seal around the vent pipe will take care of it.

For Florida hot weather now using only
Thetford Aqua-Kem

Hope this is helpful to someone!
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Old 02-21-2018, 03:56 PM   #12
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Hopefully the delivery driver did not have to use the facilities??
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Old 02-21-2018, 04:03 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by 5picker View Post
Before you start pulling toilets and replacing roof vents, it is very possible the smell came from the water your daughter ran into the sink.
Often times, untreated well water can smell like rotten eggs/sewer.

You didn't mention how you were using the trailer once you got home.
Were you hooked up to your own city water source or was the pump on when your daughter ran the water?

While I would hope not, it is entirely possible the dealer could have put some bad water in the fresh tank when they tested the plumbing for leaks.
Have you tried to run any additional water from the faucet and sample the smell.
Have you drained any water from the fresh tank drain to sample?

You really should drain and sanitize the fresh tank anyway on a new unit.

Too many unanswered questions for us to give you the exact cause.
There's where I would start. We had water so rank that it smelled terrible. My poor wife- she was the one with her head in the closet when she opened the washer/dryer taps and about threw up.

It's easy- I'd sanitize the water before doing anything else.

Eww, stinky water! Sanitizing the fresh water system. | Learn To RV
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Old 02-22-2018, 01:33 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Sasquatch2 View Post
Hello!
We just bought a Rockwood Mini. It is our first travel trailer. My husband brought it home Sunday and everything was great. The next morning, however, it had a distinct sewage smell. My daughter said she had accidentally bumped the kitchen sink faucet and about one cup of water came out before she turned it off. We believe this is what initiated the smell into the inside. So, my husband flushed out the tanks and vented the entire trailer. It still smells!!!
Is this normal? I expected to do all the maintenance and cleaning to prevent any odors but why would it smell if nobody had used anything and owned it less than 24 hours?? Will I be fighting this smell the entire time we own it??
HELP!!!!
The manufacturer or dealer may have put antifreeze into the water lines and/or water tank just in case and also poured some into the traps. Antifreeze smells like rotten eggs when it sits for a while. I would suggest flushing out the system with lots of water and a small amount of bleach.
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Old 02-22-2018, 02:28 PM   #15
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Following this . . .
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Old 02-22-2018, 05:01 PM   #16
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Doesn't anyone use the Geo Method anymore. Do a search and you can read all about it. I have been using it for years. I never have smells from sinks, shower, or toilet.
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Old 02-22-2018, 05:36 PM   #17
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Hopefully the delivery driver did not have to use the facilities??
You know, if they did it could have easily been their last run before getting fired.
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Old 02-22-2018, 07:16 PM   #18
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Doesn't anyone use the Geo Method anymore. Do a search and you can read all about it. I have been using it for years. I never have smells from sinks, shower, or toilet.

Lots of us use it, but how does it apply to a brand new camper that should essentially have empty tanks upon delivery?
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Old 02-22-2018, 07:35 PM   #19
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You know, if they did it could have easily been their last run before getting fired.
I doubt it, who would know who it was once it sits on the lot and the delivery driver is gone. I don't think dealers would care anyway. They just want to sell.
I always wonder about those drivers, do they sleep in it, if the trip takes longer than a day? And how fast are they going with it? And if it's a motorhome, the motor needs to be broken in properly.
Does anyone know?
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Old 02-22-2018, 10:11 PM   #20
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Wink Key word is should

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Lots of us use it, but how does it apply to a brand new camper that should essentially have empty tanks upon delivery?
Just saying,

I believe that it would be highly likely that something ended up in the j-trap of the new trailer. Surely can't hurt to give it a go.

I think we all know that the unexpected can be expected.
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