Grey water smell? - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Problem Solving | Owners helping each other
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 08-13-2013, 07:11 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 735
Grey water smell?

We're just back from 10 days on the road, and we've noticed a rather strong smell in the trailer. I think it's coming from the grey tank. We emptied it on our last day out (that was 2 days ago) but I'm just getting to flushing the tank out tonight.

We use our grey for dish washing and teeth brushing. We use camp facilities for showers.

Is a developing smell normal? How do you deal with it? Should I flush the tank more thoroughly every time I empty it? How do you do that?

Thanks for the assistance. Still on the learning curve...
__________________

__________________
Doug

2013 Escape 19 ("The Dog House") , 2018 Ford F150
dbailey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 07:31 PM   #2
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Chilliwack, British Columbia
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 19,425
Did you get a little bottle of blue ink deodorizer? try that in both your black and grey tanks.
__________________

__________________
Jim
It is not the years in your life but the life in your years Lincoln
cpaharley2008 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 07:37 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Jim Bennett's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 14,158
I have never deodorized in the grey tank. The traps should stop any smell from coming up.

Did you check to make certain that the drain plug is closed tight in the shower, and that there is water in the trap?
__________________
2017 Escape 5.0 TA
2015 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5L EcoBoost
2009 Escape 19 (previous)
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” — Abraham Lincoln
Jim Bennett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 07:41 PM   #4
Site Team
 
Donna D.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Portland, Oregon
Trailer: 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 8,491
My solution is to always wipe the dishes clean before washing. I keep every napkin and papertowel (except the NASTY ones) and use those to clean plates, pots, etc. I make sure very little "food" goes down the drain. And absolutely NO Tuna oil/water or water from steaming vegetables (expecially broccoli and cauliflower).

I have a friend with a monster 5th wheel. After they dump the gray water, they put bleach (kept in an old dishsoap container) down the drain and put a gallon or so of freshwater in the tank.

Consider putting the sink plug in after you dump the tank too. Keep those odors contained.

There are commercial products for gray water tank deordorizing too. I haven't used any of them, my solution works for me!
Donna D. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 08:26 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 235
I use a Flush King for both waste tanks of my 17B. It normally takes 7 or so flushes to clean the black water tank and I normally flush the grey water tank 3 or 4 times. I then 1/2 fill both tanks, add some Calgone water softener and laundry soap and drive it home. After getting home I drain both tanks on the grass and they are nice and clean.
Our trailers are small; there is no room for odors.
Here is a link http://www.flushking.com/
Thane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 08:28 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 735
I did the bleach thing tonight. We'll see if that works. If not, I'll try other chemicals (after making very sure there's no bleach left!). Yeah, we did get one of the bottles of black-water chemicals.

We generally do keep the plugs in the various drains.

I'm not one for fussing, so wiping down dishes before washing them isn't going to fly.

I didn't think there was a trap in the shower floor -- no room for it. There also doesn't seem to be a trap in the bathroom sink, though it could be hidden in the wall. But I will test those questions.
__________________
Doug

2013 Escape 19 ("The Dog House") , 2018 Ford F150
dbailey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 09:05 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Yellow Springs, Ohio
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 611
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbailey View Post

I didn't think there was a trap in the shower floor -- no room for it. There also doesn't seem to be a trap in the bathroom sink, though it could be hidden in the wall. But I will test those questions.
I've been wondering about traps, or lack of, as well. You can see the one under the kitchen sink, so that led me to believe there must also be traps for the bathroom drains. If you peek under the trailer, you can see what I believe is effectively a trap made of PVC fittings between the shower drains and the point of entry near the top of the gray tank. It looks to me like the drain water could slosh and lose its water seal while traveling, which is probably why they suggest closing both drains before hitting the road. No promises that I'm right about this, but that's the way it looks to me.
Parker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 10:03 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
techfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Longview, WA, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 15B - 2014 Nissan Frontier SL
Posts: 860
Parker, I thought exactly the same thing since the only thing that looks like a trap is rather shallow. We also experienced bad smells after 4 days of dry camping and didn't have a chance to empty the grey tank. Pulled into new location after traveling with a 2/3 full grey tank and there were obvious smells from the sink when I unplugged the stopper. I think the trap is just too shallow.
__________________
Tim and Julie
2013 Escape 15B
2014 Nissan Frontier, Previous 2012 Santa Fe
techfan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2013, 10:25 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 735
OK, makes sense. I have the spray insulation, so haven't tried to look. I will take a gander tomorrow once I've got some light.

I put water down the shower drain this evening. We'll see if that helps.

There was already noticeable improvement after the bleach treatment.
__________________
Doug

2013 Escape 19 ("The Dog House") , 2018 Ford F150
dbailey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 07:35 AM   #10
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Chilliwack, British Columbia
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 19,425
Reace told me the bath sink and shower all meet below the shower and there is a trap so you can pour rv antifreeze down the shower drain and it will winterize that part of the system. I also pour a little down the sink, just in case.
__________________
Jim
It is not the years in your life but the life in your years Lincoln
cpaharley2008 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 08:20 AM   #11
Senior Member
 
fudge_brownie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Janesville, WI, Wisconsin
Trailer: Escape 19 (sold) Escape 21 2014
Posts: 1,449
Is the solution simply one of adding water to the sinks and shower drains after travelling? I would think the sinks would take care of themselves, assuming they are used more often. In my case the smells seem to be from the bathroom, so I am suspicious of the shower drain. Not sure that screw in plug is air tight, especially if the bathroom is closed up with the ceiling vent down. However, it appears that the bathroom sink and shower drain are on the same trap?

I did find pouring bleach into a half full gray water tank helped.

We just finished a two week boon-docking stay at a single site. We did not empty tanks for the entire time. (Some reasons, we were able to empty dishwater outside the Escape and we added a small quantity of fresh water). In any case, we found the toilet needed frequent cleaning, unlike the porcelain models in our home, the plastic seems to retain odors and requires more attention.
__________________
Paul and Janet Braun
2003 Toyota 4Runner V8 now 2012 Toyota Sequoia V8
Escape 19' 2010 now 2014 Escape 21'
fudge_brownie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 08:43 AM   #12
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Chilliwack, British Columbia
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 19,425
Wow, 2 weeks without moving, good job on conserving your resources.
__________________
Jim
It is not the years in your life but the life in your years Lincoln
cpaharley2008 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 09:08 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
Trees's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Hastings, Michigan
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19'
Posts: 109
As sailors & RVers, every trip to Canada, we hit a Marine store that carries Canndure.
Amazing enzyme liquid! We can dump boat holding tank after a 4 week duration and experience an unholy odor when opening tank to pump out. Won't claim it is sweet, but OK.
Two weeks in Fl, without draining RV tank OK also. Enzyme, so you have to flush out prior chemicals. Put a little in grey tank now too. ALSO, a little with water in dish detergent bottle and use as 'manuel swirlie' for toilet - wetting whole bowl as toilet swirlie not that efficient. :-)
Have seen some enzyme products on Camping World shelves last couple years, but haven't heard reviews.
My bottle says:
Canndure Odour Control Corp., Calgary, AL
Trees is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 09:11 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Kelowna, British Columbia
Trailer: 2008 Escape 17b
Posts: 1,890
Don't forget people......bleach can rot rubber.
J Mac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 09:24 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Yellow Springs, Ohio
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 611
[QUOTE=fudge_brownie;30615]Is the solution simply one of adding water to the sinks and shower drains after travelling? I would think the sinks would take care of themselves, assuming they are used more often. In my case the smells seem to be from the bathroom, so I am suspicious of the shower drain. Not sure that screw in plug is air tight, especially if the bathroom is closed up with the ceiling vent down. However, it appears that the bathroom sink and shower drain are on the same trap?

/QUOTE]

Refilling the traps after stopping is probably the best you can do. They do appear to be a common trap. The vertical drain beneath the bathroom sink is a perfect candidate for a Hepvo waste valve like I installed in our Casita, but that still leaves the shower drain that I doubt can be improved.
Parker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 09:36 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
Jrn56's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Cottage Grove, Minnesota
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 365
Is this a new issue or have other longtime Escape owners had this problem?
__________________
John and Brenda
Cottage Grove, MN
Jrn56 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 10:27 AM   #17
Senior Member
 
Trees's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Hastings, Michigan
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19'
Posts: 109
As sailors & RVers, every trip to Canada, we hit a Marine store that carries Canndure.
Amazing enzyme liquid! We can dump boat holding tank after a 4 week duration and experience an unholy odor when opening tank to pump out. Won't claim it is sweet, but OK.
Two weeks in Fl, without draining RV tank OK also. Enzyme, so you have to flush out prior chemicals. Put a little in grey tank now too. ALSO, a little with water in dish detergent bottle and use as 'manuel swirlie' for toilet - wetting whole bowl as toilet swirlie not that efficient. :-)
Have seen some enzyme products on Camping World shelves last couple years, but haven't heard reviews.
My bottle says:
Canndure Odour Control Corp., Calgary, AL
Trees is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 12:45 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
Kountrykamper's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Middle, Tennessee
Trailer: 2017 Escape 19' #2
Posts: 1,442
This is also great stuff. We have been using it for a couple years.

Unique RV Digest It - Unique Distributing
__________________
Tom
Kountrykamper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 04:51 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
fudge_brownie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Janesville, WI, Wisconsin
Trailer: Escape 19 (sold) Escape 21 2014
Posts: 1,449
John,
This appears to be something new on the forum. I can say it is something new we have experienced after three years of use. Perhaps someone like Donna can recall if such a topic has been discussed before, I have trouble remembering the day of the week.

J Mac
Good point on the bleach, I have always poured the bleach on the way to the dump station, I want something in the tank for it to mix with and the opportunity to slosh around a bit.
__________________
Paul and Janet Braun
2003 Toyota 4Runner V8 now 2012 Toyota Sequoia V8
Escape 19' 2010 now 2014 Escape 21'
fudge_brownie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2013, 10:03 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 735
Well, between the bleach treatment and putting water in the shower drain, the problem seems resolved (or at least much much better).

I put a couple of cups of bleach in a 3/4 full tank, let it sit for 30 minutes, drained it and flushed again with fresh water. I hadn't realized that bleach and rubber don't go together. Is there any rubber in the plumbing, tank, or outlet valves? I can't see any.

I also put water down the shower floor drain. We haven't used it, so there was no water in it.

24 hours later, the smell is pretty much entirely gone.

Thanks for the assistance, folks!
__________________

__________________
Doug

2013 Escape 19 ("The Dog House") , 2018 Ford F150
dbailey is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off






» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:09 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×