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Old 11-22-2015, 05:57 AM   #1
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Holding Tank Routine

Wondering what folks routines are for dumping the tanks, not so much how you dump, but more the after dump prep of the tanks.

Reason I ask.
On our fall trip out west the couple times we had hookups I used the Flush King I've had for a few years to really get the tanks clean.


What I noticed was that when I first started to dump, the liquid was clear and blue before seeing the expected effluent. Don't know how much was clear like that, maybe 1/2 a gallon. I'm sure I had driven at least a couple hundred miles since adding the chemicals.

It got me to thinking I might be adding the blue holding tank chemicals too soon. I had been putting it in the tank then dumping in a couple gallons of water, or vise versa. Might all this be going into the tanks exit pipe and just sitting there until I dump instead of mixing in with the effluent? In essence doing next to nothing other then making the 2 gallons in the pipe smell good. This may be how it's always been with the trailer, I rarely use the Flush King as I rarely have hookups. I have noticed the chemicals don't always seem to work, I've been blaming the chemicals and have just gone to our 3rd different type. Might be more a procedure issue rather then a product issue.

I think the best solution for me would be to wait a day to add the chemicals, but then I have to remember to do so. So when do you add your chemicals? I could add more water which I've always tried not to do, the tanks are small enough as it is. Due to medical reasons I can only go about 5-6 days before needed to find a dump station for the black tank.
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Old 11-22-2015, 06:46 AM   #2
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I always add a bit of water after dumping, maybe 1/2 gallon tops, then add the chemical. The only exception being when winterizing.
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Old 11-22-2015, 07:10 AM   #3
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Wow,

Never thought about it too much. Bet the the pipes hold a couple gallons. Seems reasonable to add water to an empty tank until you have some visable at the potty, then add chemical. You need to add that much to avoid the mound syndrome anyway.

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Old 11-22-2015, 07:31 AM   #4
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Hi: padlin... We use the "Geo" method of treatment so don't see any blue colour change. I do have a clear elbow to add between the cap and hose ends but it doesn't have the added gate valve. The drain pipes on the 5.0TA have much less volume so we add aprox. 1 gal. of liquid mix to both the grey/black tanks. We dump frequently... not my most fav. job... but using the Calgon softener eliminates the "Mound syndrome". Alf
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Old 11-22-2015, 08:05 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
I always add a bit of water after dumping, maybe 1/2 gallon tops, then add the chemical. The only exception being when winterizing.
I think the original poster is suggesting that the first 1/2 gallon or gallon of water, mixed with chemical, ends up in the exit pipe and not on the floor of the tank.
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Old 11-22-2015, 08:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J Mac View Post
I think the original poster is suggesting that the first 1/2 gallon or gallon of water, mixed with chemical, ends up in the exit pipe and not on the floor of the tank.
Correct, but I don't know how much sits in the pipes of the differing trailers.

Just checked, takes a 1/2 gallon to fill the pipe to the tank. Easy enough, I'll just dump a gallon of water in, then add another with the chemicals.
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:46 AM   #7
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Some chemicals say to add a gallon. Don't know why chemicals would not be on the floor unless the trailer or tank is not level.

The trailer would hopefully not be level at a dump so as to be able to dump well. Sometimes blocks under tires may need to be used on one side. If the trailer is not level at the dump as is often the case, the chemicals may go to the gate or valve. Chemicals there may have nothing to do with where they were in the first place.

Then again, if the tank is mounted such that chemical and water go to the gate right away, maybe a little more water would help. I would think that some water should probably be put in before chemical just to dilute, depending on type of chemical. There is liquid, powder or pack.

The main thing needed in the tank is water. I doubt the chemicals can be depended upon to do much. Many people do not use any and I sometimes wonder if they are a waste of money.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:07 AM   #8
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3" Pipe holds 0.367 gallons of water per foot (you can find just about anything on the internet!) I suspect that is for standard steel pipe, but PVC will be close...
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:18 AM   #9
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......The main thing needed in the tank is water. I doubt the chemicals can be depended upon to do much. Many people do not use any and I sometimes wonder if they are a waste of money.
They keep odors down. We prefer the Orange liquid to the Green/Blue liquid.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:22 AM   #10
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I've wondered if the chemicals do anything from time to time, it stinks sometimes even with them, not that I've tried going without. To me it's only purpose is to try and mask the smell, which is probably next to impossible.

On another note... tried the little packets last fall, dumped in 1 1/2 gallons of water, added a packet. Next time it stunk we figure we didn't use enough so we used 2 packets. Shortly thereafter, we found one of the packets stuck to the gate when dumping, it hadn't even dissolved. End of the packets.

I think the smell we get occasionally is more from the tanks vent then the toilet, unless one forgets to turn off the fan when flushing. The tank vent and the bathroom vent are pretty close to each other.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:31 AM   #11
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3" Pipe holds 0.367 gallons of water per foot...
Seriously Jon, could you not be so vague with your posts, and possibly come up with something a bit more accurate?

The pipe length was well less than 2' long on our 19, so likely held near that 1/2 gallon. It might not hurt then to add near a gallon of water before the chemicals.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:44 AM   #12
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Aren't the chemicals eventually going to disperse into the water anyway if they dissolve correctly- unless they are trapped in the pipe?

(I have a feeling I am going to regret this question. ...waiting... )
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:20 PM   #13
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Found Oderless to be the best . You need to add water with chemical . Found if you can let sit for maybe a week after you get home after the last dump ,everything is liquified. We do have a clean out at home though . Tried others and they didn't do the job . Went back to Oderless . Was at camping world long time ago and a old timer suggested it as being the best . We have extreme heat here in California and there is no smell . After we dump , then clean out tank with wand in toilet , add chemical and water and we are ready for next trip. Pat
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:51 PM   #14
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Bob, there can be a bad smell particularly right after dumping but I would think that water would take care of that soon enough. As for the powder, I always think I am going to make a big mess with it.

The packets are not all the same and surely usually dissolve or the tank would be blocked soon enough. Some of the packet material is tougher than others. I suppose a packet can be cut and then just pour out of it and throw away the material. A packet not dissolved and sitting is probably more due to inadequate water unless it was perhaps very old and the material was dried out or some such.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:53 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patandlinda View Post
Found Oderless to be the best . You need to add water with chemical . Found if you can let sit for maybe a week after you get home after the last dump ,everything is liquified. We do have a clean out at home though . Tried others and they didn't do the job . Went back to Oderless . Was at camping world long time ago and a old timer suggested it as being the best . We have extreme heat here in California and there is no smell . After we dump , then clean out tank with wand in toilet , add chemical and water and we are ready for next trip. Pat
I will look for Odorless. There are so many. Don't know how many we have used by now.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:59 PM   #16
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Old 11-22-2015, 01:01 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patandlinda View Post
Found Oderless to be the best . You need to add water with chemical . Found if you can let sit for maybe a week after you get home after the last dump ,everything is liquified. We do have a clean out at home though . Tried others and they didn't do the job . Went back to Oderless . Was at camping world long time ago and a old timer suggested it as being the best . We have extreme heat here in California and there is no smell . After we dump , then clean out tank with wand in toilet , add chemical and water and we are ready for next trip. Pat
Found it as "Odorlos". Don't know that we have used that one. Thanks, Pat! I will look for it.
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Old 11-22-2015, 01:24 PM   #18
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I will look for Odorless. There are so many. Don't know how many we have used by now.
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Old 11-22-2015, 01:26 PM   #19
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Found it as "Odorlos". Don't know that we have used that one. Thanks, Pat! I will look for it.
Sorry I misspelled . It is what Glen is showing you . It also comes in packets which is what I am using now . Pat
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Old 11-22-2015, 05:07 PM   #20
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Now this is something I've never thought of. The drain pipe on my 21 is about six feet long, so according to Jon's formula it holds more than two gallons. Dang. So, how should one proceed? Use packets and hope they stay on the floor of the tank and not immediately go into the pipe?
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