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Old 10-29-2018, 10:02 PM   #1
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Tank Cleaner

Just wondering if anyone has any knowledge of this.

I recently got a tip from an RV service writer to pour a half bottle of liquid fabric softener into half a tank of clean water in blk/gry tanks and drive around for awhile to clean them. He said it is not harmful to the seals.


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Old 11-05-2018, 05:51 PM   #2
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People put all kinds of cleaners in their tanks with varying degrees of success. The fabric softener certainly wouldn't harm anything... but I don't know if it would help, either.
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Old 11-06-2018, 05:58 AM   #3
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We don't use anywhere near that much but on shorter trips between parks we will use 1 CUP of Calgon and 1 cup of liquid dishwasher detergent in each of the tanks along with a bit of water (also not a 1/2 tank normally).
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:02 PM   #4
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Thank you for your responses. Just looking for advice and to not to make mistakes.

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Old 11-07-2018, 08:48 AM   #5
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I prefer clear water instead of spending money on doubtful products. Never had a tank issue in nearly 40 yrs of camping. Just make sure there is enough water in the black tank to cover ALL solids.
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Old 11-11-2018, 11:03 AM   #6
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Thanks Ray, I have tried just plain water when we changed campgrounds, but it didn't change the reading. Our gauge reads 2/3 all the time. It's been that way since shortly after we bought this coach. The dealer made the recommendation to try the fabric softener.

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Old 11-11-2018, 01:12 PM   #7
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1. Does your RV have a black tank sprayer?

If so, I would turn the sprayer on and close the black tank valve. Let the black tank fill up, then dump. Do this several times.

I was amazed what came out after the 2nd and 3rd time of doing this. We did this a week ago as we were putting the RV up and wanted the tanks to be very clean for the winter.

If you do not have a black tank sprayer run a hose and point down the toilet til fill up.

I have heard Borax was a good thing to put down your black tank, however, I haven't used it yet but plan to next season.
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Old 11-11-2018, 01:53 PM   #8
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Rain Drops water softener powder is half the price of Calgon and has helped in my RV when I apparently had crud on the side of the black tank that was causing the non-contact Winnebago OEM sensors to show a higher level than what was actually in the tank. I add about a cup to the black tank.
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Old 11-11-2018, 04:16 PM   #9
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Grey tank gauges

Our also shows 2/3 all the time. Been this way for over a year of driving all over the country (we fulltime). This last drive I tried the new Thetford Tank Blaster Holding Tank Cleaner, 4-pack... ho humm... still nothing to write home about. I suspect the grease and oil in the dish water is my problem but without being able to get a spay hose in there (too many elbows and no direct access) we are only left with chemicals... I have wondered about something like jet dry... but have yet to give that a try.
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Old 11-11-2018, 04:30 PM   #10
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Calgon in the tank

After you have cleaned the tank real well, you can add the Calgon with some water to the tank. What the Calgon does is that it coats the walls of the tank and makes them very slick so "nothing" will stick to them. I usually treat my black tank after 3 dumps and the grey tank after 5 dumps. I do not use it as a cleaner but as a lubricator. It does not harm your tanks nor your valves.
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Old 11-11-2018, 05:52 PM   #11
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Our gray water exterior tank sensors were not reading accurately. Just before leaving on a trip I added through the kitchen sink, and with water running, a whole bottle of Kirland (Costco) dishwasher soap and filled the tank with hot water by hose from the house. We drove 200 miles and let it sit overnight then drained the tank in the morning. The reading was nearly accurate. Then I started using only Dawn dish detergent for washing dishes, etc. after the dishes had been wiped of food using the paper napkins from the meal. I also wiped as clean as possible pots and pans. Before too long the readings were accurate and have been ever since I started and continue to follow this procedure.
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Old 11-11-2018, 07:38 PM   #12
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Look into converting to a See Level gauge system; a thousand times better than the standard tank level system. It's actually used on many of the higher-end RVs. I can tell within about a gallon of how full or empty my tanks are, including the propane which is extremely accurate.
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Old 11-11-2018, 08:16 PM   #13
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Read this about cleaning black tank adding Ice

Written by : Paula Benzler-Wilkinson on RV Interior:Exterior Ideas, thought the ice idea was worth a try..,

We always empty our tanks where we are at before leaving. We also back flush the blank tank until the water that is being dumped is clear. We close the valves and we then add one cup of Liquid Calgon water softener (found at Walmart and other stores) to about one gallon of water and mix thoroughly. I use a cheap gallon pitcher found at a dollar store. We then pour it into our toilet (black holding tank) and add a 7lb bag of ice too. We mix another cup of Calgon with a gallon of water and distribute it evenly through the sink drains and shower drains. We add a bit more water down each of those drains. As we drive towards our next destination or home the sloshing cleans anything off of the walls and the Calgon helps remove any hard water deposits that may be on your tank fullness sensors . The ice aids in pulling anything of the black tank walls that may have been missed in the backflush. We dump when we get to our destination and then add a bit of water to the black tank and add chemical. If we are storing it, we just leave the solution in the tanks until we get to the RV park and then dump and add the bit of water and chemical. We live in central California so no worries about the tanks freezing. Never had any issues with our sensors after starting this process. Got this tip from a RV forum.
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Old 11-11-2018, 09:25 PM   #14
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Thanks all! Great tips. Our problem is with the grey tank. With all these suggestions I'm sure I'll find a solution. We're moving again this week and I'll check back in with our progress.

Thanks again,

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