What’s in your Black Tank?

One of my co-workers thinks they know everything to know. He has an RV and he believes he is quite wise with respect to purchasing them. He constantly harps to new RV owners “you don’t get a new RV as your first RV. Always go used for your first RV.”

As you know, I didn’t listen to Mr. Know-it-all. I purchased a new RV, and I’m glad I did.

A big part of it is, I have a pretty good idea what’s in my black tank. Used RV owners might have an idea what’s in their black tank, but there’s no certainty. Even if you buy that used RV from a family that owned it for six hours, you don’t know if they went to a Restaurant, got soap in their food, then the Brady Bunch pyramided in the one RV toilet for 4 hours on their way back to the dealer. As far as RVing goes, the black tank might be the most important item on your vehicle. It definitely affects your quality of life.

Today, I had a meeting with my RV, the black tank and gray tank, as well as a piece of equipment that failed when I needed to finish the job. Here’s what happened:

My frustration grew over the RV’s sensor reporting wild numbers on the black & gray tanks. Sometimes, it would report I had full tanks, other times they would be empty. Most of the time they were wrong.

To try and resolve the issues, I used a variation of what’s called the GEO method. This is simply using laundry detergent, water softener and bleach to clean, disinfect and remove waste from the black tank. Today, I dumped 5 gallons of hot water, Calgon water softener, and 20 Mule Team borax into the toilet, then took the swizzle stick and rinsed the black tank from the inside.

Swizzle stick

Today’s hero: the Swizzle stick

The meters said my black tank was 2/3 full, after reporting the tank was completely full 5 minutes before. I decided instead of letting the vehicle sit, I would dump what waste was clogging up the system.

After dumping the waste, I found nothing blocking the tank. Lo and behold, the black tank finally registered empty! I was pleased. So now, I need to find out what’s happening with the gray tank, which still registered 1/3 full even though it was completely empty.

Meanwhile, I tried using a Camco device, a tool to send water into the tank from an attached hose. I’ve seen various videos with this tool but here’s my experience: it doesn’t work. Today was the 4th time I’ve used it and this was the final try.

The broken piece is above my thumb. No rubber washer should be visible in this picture.

It broke off and sprayed water everywhere. Fortunately, I didn’t need to attempt the back flush on the black tank, so I put the thing aside for disposal. It was about $35, a waste of money.

Knowing what’s in your black tank is quite important. If you’re going to buy used, ask what’s in your black tank? Ask to check the meters on your gray and black tanks. Your dealer will probably say they were cleaned when they got it, but he doesn’t know. I’d suggest buying from a private person might get some real honesty — or dishonesty. It’s unlikely they know what’s in their black and gray tanks.

About bittersportspills

I love sports. I don't love the hype, homerism, ratings talk, self-important egomaniacs, bias or any of the other nonsense you get with the national media. Nor will you get the two clowns on sports talk radio who stage phony arguments. It doesn't make it entertaining. It makes it time to turn on your iPod and jam instead of listening to white noise generators. This is the sports blog for you, the ones who don't like everything Los Angeles or New York. Just because the sporting media is based there doesn't mean we have to like their teams. We do treat them fairly, though. That means if one of those cities has an average QB who plays particularly well...we'll note it. If they're garbage, we'll say so. Instead of crying "why, why, why" like a certain sports media homer did in his radio broadcast. This isn't my job...I have a real one. Nevertheless, I'll post here when I make an observation. Common sense in sports is nearly dead. Now we're attempting to bring it back.
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