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Author Topic: Black Tank Issues  (Read 3952 times)
captain ron
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« on: March 08, 2007, 08:47:42 PM »

I need to re-plum my black tank, it now runs through the floor and is too low for a decent drop in the hose to sewer connection at the campground`I'm staying at. I may pull the tank once I get it empty (it's clogged now) and raise it the few inches that I have to spare. I'm also thinking about putting a small gray tank above it on the passenger side and have it dump into the black to help clean it out but also have another drain in gray tank for times I need to dump it without dumping black. Any suggestions on any devices that help flush or unplug the black tank that I should add when I re-plum it?
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TomC
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« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2007, 09:08:19 PM »

The best unclogging device I found was a 3" pipe cap with a hose connection on it.  Before I got the jest of how my system worked, my black tank also clogged up.  Bought that cap, attached the cap to the sewer outlet (be somewhere where you can hose down the bit of sewer junk that might come out)hooked up the hose, turned it on, then opened the valve, and in just a couple of seconds all was clear-turned off the water, closed the valve (only clear water came back out) then dumped it normally.  Simple, low cost.
Now what I do, after dumping, will fill my toilet to the brim twice and dump that as an initial charge.  It is about 5 gal, and I figured would fill the drain pipes with clear water keeping the clogging paper and solids out until they are flowing out through the sewer hose.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
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« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2007, 05:58:16 AM »

sounds like you are maybe leaving your dump valve open while parked at the park. Suggest you not do this. Instead, let the tank fill to 3/4 and then dump it all at once. Maybe once a week or so.  Also, I'd suggest you let the grey water run into the tank so you get more liquid in there to help break down the solids.

There's a fitting with a hose connection you can put on your dump that allows you to push water back up the dump line. Check your camping store.

There's also a device called a Sewer Solution that you can attach to your dump valve and use a garden hose to help dump through another garden hose. The pressure of the shore line breaks up the solids and pumps it out with the shore water. There's also a switch to allow you to shoot cleaning water up into the tank.

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Craig Shepard
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Jerry32
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« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2007, 07:58:21 AM »

This is an issue I've been thinking about as a lot of conversions just put the tanks on the cargo floor and that leaves no room for downflow. I seen a Motot home that used a big flat water tank on the bottom and then put black and gray over it. I am going to try to emulate that design..  Jerry
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1988 MCI 102A3 8V92TA 740
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« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2007, 08:00:02 AM »

 When I started my conversion I noticed that most people had there sewer outlet going through the floor. It looked like a great idea. It is one of the worst things I did on my bus!!!! Never again!!! I've been at dump stations with curbs that are higher than the bottom of my bus. Among other things.
 I've also had a problem with dumping. Not from letting the the product run through the tank either.
 The comon suggestion I found was to put 2/3 bags of ice in toilet and drive around. To let ice brake up solids. Ice then melts and drains out. Just drivng around befor dumping also helps. Another suggestion was to insert a stick throught toilet and stir! I don't want to do this, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do.
  When I bought my tanks, I had them add a 3 inch fitting to the accessible end of the blackwater tank. and use it as an inspection/cleanout. If you are pulling your tanks you could have one added?
 Gumpy suggested adding greywater to tank. Beer also works well for this. Easiest method to add to black water tank is to drink it.
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captain ron
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« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2007, 09:02:12 AM »

Gumpy, I don't leave my gate open I learned that lesson with my first motor home. I just crap alot and use a lot of toilet paper. Once I get it empty and cleaned out I'm going to raise it and replum the outlet. It is also equipped with 2 fittings on the far side that I will hook a water hose to for help in flushing. I think I might install an outlet that comes through my wheel well. Then I can get the drain higher if there's enough clearance.
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gumpy
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« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2007, 11:05:44 AM »

I wouldn't recommend coming through the wheel well with the dump. Should you blow a tire or pick up some debris between your duals, you could bust it off. Granted, the gate will be inside, but the force of a chunk of rubber or a large rock hitting the outlet might break it off inside the bay, ahead of the gate, and that would be an aweful mess.

I plumbed mine to go out the bottom of the bay. I love it. Yes, I often have to get on one knee to hook up the hose, but it's well worth it. I've never had a problem with curbs, either, as Jim suggested. The tank level is always above the curb, and s&^T flows downhill. When the curb is a bit high, I just dump till it stops flowing out of the tank, and then with the valve open, I pick up the hose starting at the connection and work my way towards the sanitary sewer end, moving the contents up and over the curb. Might have to do this once or twice at the most. You have to leave the gate open so it can get air into the line as the contents moves out the hose. I've never encountered a curb that was higher than the floor of the bay. Never had a problem doing this, though I've only been using it like this for a couple years. The best thing, though, is that by having it come out the bottom of the bay, there's very little chance I will get contamination in my bay, which also houses my fresh water system and drinking hoses.

I'd really think you should combine the gray and black while you are parked so there's more liquid in the tank. I think you'll find that with more liquid, you won't have problems with clogs. Would sure beat having to move and replumb that tank and all the lines going into it.

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Craig Shepard
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« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2007, 11:12:24 AM »

Jerry - there is something inherently wrong w/ black and grey tanks above fresh water - there's got to be a better way to get what you want - FWIW
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« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2007, 11:34:39 AM »

This is just my way of doing things.  When coming into a park with full hook ups, I only hook up my elec and water.  The only time I use the sewer hose is once a week to dump the tanks.  Then when driving there is water sloshing around keeping things in suspension and breaking things down.  I know some don't like to drive with the extra weight of holding tank water, but it sure simplifies coming in and out of campsites.
I always marvel at how some people can take more than 15 minutes to get set up.  I come in to a campsite, get parked, hook up my elec and water, then level the bus with my air suspension manual leveling system.  Maybe 5 minutes total.  Then if the car is behind, another 10 minutes to unhook.  15 minutes max.  Not 30, 40, 45 minutes I see some others getting settled (usually ones pulling a trailer that don't know how to back it-which is amazing to me since they are driving the trailer).  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
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« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2007, 11:54:44 AM »

I never have a flow problem as the wooden blocks above the tank are different from one side to the other to allow the tank to be slightly tilted to drain side! This tank will completely empty in about 2 minutes. Flush the toilet twice and you have clear water. The dump tube from the tank goes straight thru the bay floor to the dump site hookup with a gate valve just above the floor.

http://groups.msn.com/AceRossiMotorsports/foolsgold.msnw?action=ShowPhoto&PhotoID=467

Works Great... and being round, there are no corners to hold trash or solids in!

Ace
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Ace Rossi
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captain ron
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« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2007, 04:50:22 PM »

Gumpy, I already thought of that problem and would only have a hole to access it with a cover over it that opens and then I could run the hose inside and hook it up.
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gumpy
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« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2007, 05:19:21 PM »

Yeah, that would work and keep it safe. Maybe you can find a boat access panel that will seal tightly and won't leak.  You still will have the problem of the connection leaking sewage into the bay every time you unhook the hose after dumping. Must not be too much of a problem, though, as that seems to be the norm for most RVs and conversions. 

I still like mine under the floor.

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Craig Shepard
Located in Minnesquito

http://bus.gumpydog.com - "Some Assembly Required"
captain ron
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« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2007, 05:45:56 PM »

Yeah, that would work and keep it safe. Maybe you can find a boat access panel that will seal tightly and won't leak.  You still will have the problem of the connection leaking sewage into the bay every time you unhook the hose after dumping. Must not be too much of a problem, though, as that seems to be the norm for most RVs and conversions. 

I still like mine under the floor.



It's ok under when you pull up to most dump sites as you can usually get right over them and use a short hose. but in a campground parked it is usually too low and a pain in the a$$ making for a $h!ty job. 
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pete81eaglefanasty
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« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2007, 05:46:54 PM »

 I have my dump so as when you disconect it drain's out a port hole that has a cover to seal it as you can see in the picture.I have a cover to the left that is for sewer hose  & water hose goes out in a campground, I still can close my bay door with everthing hook up.

        Pete & Jean
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« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2007, 05:51:50 PM »

Niles,
I think it is just a matter of design although it sounds wrong but to see how to do it looked just fine to me. It was on a high end diesel MH that I looked at this arangemn=ent and liked it.  When It is done it actually comes out like two different  compartments side by side.  with fresh watrer on one side and waste on the other side.

Jerry
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