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Old 08-27-2017, 07:30 PM   #1
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real holding tank capacities different?

I just returned from first long trip where I was at places long enough to fill holding tanks. Seemed to be sooner than I expected. Got home Friday after dumping tanks, decided to calibrate them to see.

I used a one gallon at a time bucket and filled the black then gray tanks. My 2016 Escape 19 says it had 19gallon black and 26gallon gray.

It took 14.5 gallons to fill black to the bottom of toilet flap.
It took 19 gallons to fill gray to water just coming out of shower drain. What the heck?

Anyone else checked actual capacities and found a lot less?

Jeff
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Old 08-27-2017, 07:37 PM   #2
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You may have had liquid still in your tanks, even though it reads empty. You can always drain each tank and measure the discharge and then compare numbers, at least try the gray, I would not though want to mess/measure the black tank contents.
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Old 08-27-2017, 07:41 PM   #3
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You will get a more accurate measurement doing it the opposite way - filling each to full while measuring how much you are putting in. Our black tank holds more than it is listed at, as the pipes hold several gallons.
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Old 08-27-2017, 07:50 PM   #4
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This anomaly is not unusual.
The actual volume of my Casita's grey tank is 40 gallons but in actuality the tank is only capable of containing 32 gallons before liquid backs up in the drain lines.
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Old 08-27-2017, 07:55 PM   #5
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You will get a more accurate measurement doing it the opposite way - filling each to full while measuring how much you are putting in. Our black tank holds more than it is listed at, as the pipes hold several gallons.
That's what I was trying, ex electrical engineer, so with that mindset I wanted to know what the 1/3, 2/3, full indicators meant. It is possible there was some left in the tanks after dumping as suggested but I did the normal dump routine so that would mean it would always be like this and the effective capacity is less.

I double checked the bucket I was using with a measuring cup and it was on or close so not a big difference there. The values I got were adding 1 gallon at a time thru the toilet, then the sinks.

Think I'll shoot Reace an email and ask since I'm getting so much less. Haven't checked the fresh water capacity yet but that is next.

Jeff
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Old 08-27-2017, 08:03 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Jeff in Salinas View Post
That's what I was trying, ex electrical engineer, so with that mindset I wanted to know what the 1/3, 2/3, full indicators meant. It is possible there was some left in the tanks after dumping as suggested but I did the normal dump routine so that would mean it would always be like this and the effective capacity is less.

I double checked the bucket I was using with a measuring cup and it was on or close so not a big difference there. The values I got were adding 1 gallon at a time thru the toilet, then the sinks.

Think I'll shoot Reace an email and ask since I'm getting so much less. Haven't checked the fresh water capacity yet but that is next.

Jeff
One of the fallacies of these capacity numbers is the fact you never want to completely have an empty black nor gray tank, as that is when you start having problems. So perhaps an asterisk next to the numbers maybe needed, total and use capacities.
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Old 08-27-2017, 08:07 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Jeff in Salinas View Post
I used a one gallon at a time bucket and filled the black then gray tanks.
Jeff
With that one exercise you exhibited more patience than I've shown in an entire lifetime. Given that, though, it's a good idea, and one I might try when I'm feeling particularly mellow.

If I could make one change to my 21, I'd want slightly larger gray and black holding tanks, say 40 and 30 gallons, respectively. The reason is that I bought the trailer for boondocking, and many public campgrounds have a 14-day limit. I find that I'm good for about ten days with the tank capacities that I have, so I have to hitch up and find a dump station at some point if I'm going to stay the limit. The fresh water tank doesn't matter so much as I can always pour more water in with a jug.
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Old 08-27-2017, 09:08 PM   #8
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We are equipped to top up fresh water at any time too.

Grey water is never an issue as we are usually washing cooking and washing outside and use our outside tap to get the water from. A tree is usually watered with the used water. Even should the tank fill, I will use a bucket to drain some off. Below is a shot of our way table outside.

Regarding the black holding tank, if we know we are parked in one spot a good length of time, we try to use a washroom or outhouse if one is available during the day. Tree watering once again comes into play if not at an established campground.
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Old 08-27-2017, 09:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff in Salinas View Post
I just returned from first long trip where I was at places long enough to fill holding tanks. Seemed to be sooner than I expected. Got home Friday after dumping tanks, decided to calibrate them to see.

I used a one gallon at a time bucket and filled the black then gray tanks. My 2016 Escape 19 says it had 19gallon black and 26gallon gray.

It took 14.5 gallons to fill black to the bottom of toilet flap.
It took 19 gallons to fill gray to water just coming out of shower drain. What the heck?

Anyone else checked actual capacities and found a lot less?

Jeff
The grey tank in particular does not completely drain if the trailer is level side to side. If I want to get it all out, I use my Anderson levelers and raise the passenger side wheels a few inches before draining. I do that if I know I'm going to be camping where I don't have hookups for more than 5 days. (With two of us, that seems to be our tank limit.) I also have an 18 gallon tote on wheels that I can use to emptying the tanks mid-stay without bringing the whole trailer to the dump station. Larger totes are available but 18 gallons is about the max weight I can lift into my truck bed.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Smart-Tot...&wl13=&veh=sem
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Old 08-27-2017, 09:18 PM   #10
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Quote:
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We are equipped to top up fresh water at any time too.

Grey water is never an issue as we are usually washing cooking and washing outside and use our outside tap to get the water from.
Nifty setup, Jim. Best reason yet that I have seen for the "outdoor shower" option to be on the passenger side of the trailer. Mine is on the driver's side on our 2013 '19. May have to upgrade.
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Old 08-27-2017, 09:32 PM   #11
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Draining

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Originally Posted by arniesea View Post
The grey tank in particular does not completely drain if the trailer is level side to side. If I want to get it all out, I use my Anderson levelers and raise the passenger side wheels a few inches before draining. I do that if I know I'm going to be camping where I don't have hookups for more than 5 days. (With two of us, that seems to be our tank limit.) I also have an 18 gallon tote on wheels that I can use to emptying the tanks mid-stay without bringing the whole trailer to the dump station. Larger totes are available but 18 gallons is about the max weight I can lift into my truck bed.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Smart-Tot...&wl13=&veh=sem
Here's a picture of how I drain my grey tank in the fall. The rest of the time I know there's some grey left in there but for the way we camp ( try to dump grey every day or decant grey and dump in bushes where allowed or in specific grey water dump sites, or decant into the blank tank.) Or there's the old fold down, side drain into a bucket with a short hose, wouldnt want the bucket to tip over so a steel rebar stake is driven through the bottom. Never seems to fill. 😜
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Old 08-27-2017, 11:34 PM   #12
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Here's a picture of how I drain my grey tank in the fall. The rest of the time I know there's some grey left in there but for the way we camp ( try to dump grey every day or decant grey and dump in bushes where allowed or in specific grey water dump sites, or decant into the blank tank.) Or there's the old fold down, side drain into a bucket with a short hose, wouldnt want the bucket to tip over so a steel rebar stake is driven through the bottom. Never seems to fill. ��
Something about this post put a smile on my face and I started to laugh. Thanks! I'd like to eat and watch the show
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Old 08-27-2017, 11:56 PM   #13
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I also have an 18 gallon tote on wheels that I can use to emptying the tanks mid-stay without bringing the whole trailer to the dump station. Larger totes are available but 18 gallons is about the max weight I can lift into my truck bed.
My hats off to you young fella! @8lbs a gallon an 18 gallon tote would be close to 150lbs. These days, I'd be in the hospital if I tried to lift 150lbs into the bed of my truck.
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Old 08-28-2017, 02:19 AM   #14
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Jim, thats a very cool hose attachment on the outdoor shower. Where did you pick that up?
Brenda
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Old 08-28-2017, 07:55 AM   #15
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My hats off to you young fella! @8lbs a gallon an 18 gallon tote would be close to 150lbs. These days, I'd be in the hospital if I tried to lift 150lbs into the bed of my truck.
That's nothing! I can lift a 35 gallon tote - as long as there's nothing in it...
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Old 08-28-2017, 08:08 AM   #16
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Nifty setup, Jim. Best reason yet that I have seen for the "outdoor shower" option to be on the passenger side of the trailer. Mine is on the driver's side on our 2013 '19. May have to upgrade.
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Jim, thats a very cool hose attachment on the outdoor shower. Where did you pick that up?
Brenda
That is why I had Reace put my outside shower on the "passenger" side on my 2015 5.0TA. I wanted to be able to wash dishes under the awning if it were raining, or to rinse sandy feet if we had been wading or swimming. But I just use the hose provided by ETI, which I have modified to quickly change from a hose nozzle to a shower head. And I have a suction cup shower head holder that I can use to attach the shower head to the side of the trailer. When I was working on my build list, it didn't make any sense to me to have a shower on the driver's side. When I asked Reace about putting it on the passenger side, he thought for a few seconds and then said, yeah, that can be done as the water lines for the kitchen sink are right there. Jim's "flexible" faucet looks interesting.
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Old 08-28-2017, 08:16 AM   #17
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Here's a picture of how I drain my grey tank in the fall.
We do the same when leaving our land, and (heaven forbid) will even drain the slight used black tank too. Most of my relatives are farmers and just dump on their hay or pasture fields when they get home.
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Old 08-28-2017, 08:23 AM   #18
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Jim, thats a very cool hose attachment on the outdoor shower. Where did you pick that up?
Brenda
etrailer is where I got mine. This is is why I have been a proponent of putting the exterior shower on the passenger side before they ever offered to do it. Love it.
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Old 08-28-2017, 08:26 AM   #19
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Old 08-28-2017, 08:43 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blhvet View Post
Jim, thats a very cool hose attachment on the outdoor shower. Where did you pick that up?
Brenda
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
etrailer is where I got mine. This is is why I have been a proponent of putting the exterior shower on the passenger side before they ever offered to do it. Love it.
This looks like it:
www.etrailer.com/Accessories-and-Parts/D-and-W-Inc/PF247011.html?feed=npn&gclid=Cj0KCQjw_o7NBRDgARIsA KvAgt1-W8_r9ODG6TYgR6MIqFhLIngA_FuYG0C0MPGYiS6-4NEFXdc-SQEaArycEALw_wcB
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