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Open Roads Forum  >  General RVing Issues

 > Left the trailer with the black tank wide open

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HuckFinn410

Kansas City

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Posted: 04/23/12 01:43pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When we left to come home from the seasonal site this weekend, my son and I had a communication hiccup. I dump the camper holding tanks 90% of the time. But this time he said that he would do it. He apparently pulled the black tank lever to drain the tank and walked away……apparently not having the patience at that moment to stay with it and pull the grey lever seconds later. I figured that he would just dump both tanks (it only takes a minute). I guess that when you are a teenager (17) it’s easy to get distracted. Anyway, he is usually more reliable and competent then anyone I know. A very rare instance of him goofing up……actually he played a key role this weekend in our rescue of a disabled man and two little girls after a significant jet ski accident on the lake. He’s a good kid.

So, my question is this. Since I’m not sure that we will get back down to the camper in the next couple of weeks, is there any downside to having the black tank lever wide open? Now, keep in mind that it is hooked up to a seasonal site and has 4” pvc pipe running directly to the camper. The grey tank never got dumped and therefore the pipe didn’t get its usual grey water rinse after the black tank dump. The grey tank may get a bit stinky sitting there for a few weeks.

Probably no big deal….the blank tank may dry out a little (I usually fill it with a few gallons of water after a dump).

Any major issues?


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paulcardoza

Southeastern Massachusetts

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Posted: 04/23/12 01:47pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Don't worry about it.


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Burp

St. George's Island, MD

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Posted: 04/23/12 02:04pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It could be worse. I had my MH in for repairs and they left the black tank open but I was not connected to anything. When I pulled the cap off at the dump station I discovered their mistake. Reminded me of a scene in the movie "RV". I was not a happy camper.


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the bear II

Torrance CA.

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Posted: 04/23/12 02:17pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you end up with dried up gunk in the tank or the PVC drain pipe just run water into the tank and let it re-constitute the gunk. Then everything will flow as usual.

louiskathy

Oregon (presently)

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Posted: 04/23/12 02:18pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've heard little black bugs can get from the sewer into the black tank with the valve left open... Not a big deal. Do you have a sprayer in the black tank?? When you get back, close the black valve and put a little bleach down your toilet, turn the sprayer on. Let it be for a minute and then dump the black , close the black tank valve and drain the gray tank.


Kathy

skipnchar

Topeka or somewhere else

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Posted: 04/23/12 02:25pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Probably the biggest down side is that the tank will become completely dry and any remaining solids can become hardened and be extremely difficult to remove. Can lead to future clogs and odors. It's really not an uncommon problem though as many folks store their RV with an empty black tank but it's always best to never let it completely dry out.
Good luck / Skip


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ependydad

Columbia, MD

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Posted: 04/23/12 02:37pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

To answer a question you didn't ask... can you call the campground and ask them to go close it (or better, drain the gray water first)?


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The Texan

Cascade, Idaho

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Posted: 04/23/12 02:49pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just close it when you get back, run a little water in it and add 2-4oz of Rid-X and it will soften any thing in the tank. We routinely add Rid-X every 2nd or 3rd tank to keep things operating and it works fine. I have seen it actually dissolve a cone of death, that had set for 3 years, in about 6 weeks of the bugs working.....


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Terryallan

Foothills NC

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Posted: 04/23/12 02:51pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Me, I'd find a way to close it. Have heard of many things crawling up a sewer pipe. From Rats to snakes, to bugs. If they can do it in a stick house, They can do it in a campground.


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mike-uswest

Central Point, OR, USA

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Posted: 04/23/12 03:18pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Terryallan wrote:

Me, I'd find a way to close it. Have heard of many things crawling up a sewer pipe. From Rats to snakes, to bugs. If they can do it in a stick house, They can do it in a campground.


In that case, just don't flush the tank while you are sitting down. They will be sorry they crawled up there!!!!

Mike


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