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Old 12-17-2006, 02:10 PM   #1
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Have you seen the movie "RV" and the scene where the black water goes shooting about 50 ft into the air from the roof vent? I always envisioned that happening if I failed to open the black dump valve when I hooked a hose up to the tank flush connection. But this week I learned that isn't quite what happens....

I was dumping the tanks. I always hook up the flush system, turn it on, then dump the black tank, close it a few minutes, then dump it again, repeating until I see clean water going through the transparent elbow I have installed. So I hooked up, turn on the water to the flush system, dumped the tank, closed it, dumped it again, closed it again, then thought "I'll go get started on my next project back in the engine compartment and come back and finish dumping in a few minutes." About 10 minutes later the daughter-in-law drove up and we started talking. The wife came out and joined us, then a few minutes later the d-i-l asked, "Is that water dripping?" Yep, water was dripping out the WH compartment ...and I remembered what I had forgotten! I went to the other side where water was also dripping out the water service bay. I pulled the dump valve and turned off the tank flush system. Then I went inside to see what I would see. There was a little water on the floor in front of the bathroom sink, but I could hear water trickling somewhere. I opened a drawer in the bathroom sink cabinet and found it was full of water (along with the wife's hair dryer, curling iron, etc). I took the drawer out and dumped it and saw that the next one down was also full (along with the wife's assorted little bottles & makeup). I took it out and dumped it and saw that the bottom drawer was also full of water (along with the wife's hair bows and scarves). Thanks to the three drawers, we didn't get much water on the floor and no wet carpeting. It took me quite awhile to figure out how the drawers got filled with water as there is no plumbing in that part of the cabinet! ...what happened was that the full tank backed up into the sink which then overflowed and the water ran off the front of the cabinet, down the front, and into the top drawer. When it was full it overflowed into the center drawer, and then to the bottom drawer. When it overflowed the bottom draw, most of the water went through an access hole in the floor and ended up coming out the top of the water service compartment. Only a small amount made it to the bathroom sink area floor to get a couple of throw rugs wet. The two drawers directly under the sink plumbing were totally dry!

It took a couple of days for everything to dry out (what we didn't throw away). I put it back into the drawers yesterday. My wife said very little at the time ... I would guess that I have not heard the last word from her on my little stunt!

Next time maybe I'll close the drain in the bathroom sink and see if I can get it to overflow from the rooftop!!
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Old 12-17-2006, 02:10 PM   #2
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Have you seen the movie "RV" and the scene where the black water goes shooting about 50 ft into the air from the roof vent? I always envisioned that happening if I failed to open the black dump valve when I hooked a hose up to the tank flush connection. But this week I learned that isn't quite what happens....

I was dumping the tanks. I always hook up the flush system, turn it on, then dump the black tank, close it a few minutes, then dump it again, repeating until I see clean water going through the transparent elbow I have installed. So I hooked up, turn on the water to the flush system, dumped the tank, closed it, dumped it again, closed it again, then thought "I'll go get started on my next project back in the engine compartment and come back and finish dumping in a few minutes." About 10 minutes later the daughter-in-law drove up and we started talking. The wife came out and joined us, then a few minutes later the d-i-l asked, "Is that water dripping?" Yep, water was dripping out the WH compartment ...and I remembered what I had forgotten! I went to the other side where water was also dripping out the water service bay. I pulled the dump valve and turned off the tank flush system. Then I went inside to see what I would see. There was a little water on the floor in front of the bathroom sink, but I could hear water trickling somewhere. I opened a drawer in the bathroom sink cabinet and found it was full of water (along with the wife's hair dryer, curling iron, etc). I took the drawer out and dumped it and saw that the next one down was also full (along with the wife's assorted little bottles & makeup). I took it out and dumped it and saw that the bottom drawer was also full of water (along with the wife's hair bows and scarves). Thanks to the three drawers, we didn't get much water on the floor and no wet carpeting. It took me quite awhile to figure out how the drawers got filled with water as there is no plumbing in that part of the cabinet! ...what happened was that the full tank backed up into the sink which then overflowed and the water ran off the front of the cabinet, down the front, and into the top drawer. When it was full it overflowed into the center drawer, and then to the bottom drawer. When it overflowed the bottom draw, most of the water went through an access hole in the floor and ended up coming out the top of the water service compartment. Only a small amount made it to the bathroom sink area floor to get a couple of throw rugs wet. The two drawers directly under the sink plumbing were totally dry!

It took a couple of days for everything to dry out (what we didn't throw away). I put it back into the drawers yesterday. My wife said very little at the time ... I would guess that I have not heard the last word from her on my little stunt!

Next time maybe I'll close the drain in the bathroom sink and see if I can get it to overflow from the rooftop!!
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Old 12-17-2006, 02:17 PM   #3
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When you do we want to videorecord it for YouTube ...
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Old 12-17-2006, 02:44 PM   #4
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Why not try closing the gray tank drain and leave on bathroom sink a trickle and see if you can fill up tub-shower and see if that overflows onto floor and rugs.
It will work especially if you go out for dinner.
Easy way to learn to shut off water when leaving MH.
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Old 12-17-2006, 08:32 PM   #5
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If I understand what you're saying it's interesting that the black water flush backed up into the gray water bathroom sink. I always thought these two systems were separate. As I recall I don't have any vents on the roof so the vents on the two systems may be tied together. I've been close to forgetting the flush is running, but I've caught it in time.
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Old 12-18-2006, 12:34 AM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Roadking:
If I understand what you're saying it's interesting that the black water flush backed up into the gray water bathroom sink. I always thought these two systems were separate. As I recall I don't have any vents on the roof so the vents on the two systems may be tied together. I've been close to forgetting the flush is running, but I've caught it in time. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


Check out page 223 of the parts diagram for your coach. Follow from item 40 and go down.

http://www.winnebagoind.com/service/...03/3usq40k.pdf
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Old 12-18-2006, 04:54 AM   #7
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My bathroom sink drains into the black water tank on my Itasca. Doesn't say that in the manuals, but I checked and it does. I wonder if it would be worth putting a hose timer on the flush hose? I have nearly forgotten to turn mine off several times.
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Old 12-18-2006, 06:50 AM   #8
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AF that's interesting, simply cause winnie must either have a common vent, or your sink drains into the black tank.

My 40J is seperate, though at first I thought for sure it went in the black tank, since the sink in the watercloset is the only "Gray" tank item on that side of the coach, but after extensive filling, it does go to the gray tank.

When I left mine overfill, Mine came up the toilet valve, and yes I had water all over the place...


My friend, Scott Hicks, (www.scotthicks.com) uses a water timer on his... I have been thinking about getting one too!

J
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Old 12-18-2006, 07:00 AM   #9
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My rig does have a common black/gray vent that t's into both tanks. But the real answer is that most (maybe all?) Winnebago rigs have the bathroom sink plumbed to the black tank ...their way of helping us to ensure we have sufficient liquid in the black tank to liquify the solids. I guess my toilet valve was tight enough that it couldn't not come out there. I was surprised to see it had not.

What is a "water timer?" Guess I could just set an alarm on my watch or cell phone, but normally I don't leave the tank area when flushing.
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Old 12-18-2006, 08:16 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by AFChap:
My rig does have a common black/gray vent that t's into both tanks. But the real answer is that most (maybe all?) Winnebago rigs have the bathroom sink plumbed to the black tank ...their way of helping us to ensure we have sufficient liquid in the black tank to liquify the solids. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Nope, not mine or my last one (96 Warrior)
On both the grey water from all sinks drains into the grey water tank.
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:01 AM   #11
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AF Chap, you can pick up a water timer at Wally World, Home Depot, Lowes etc. Made for poor mans irrigation system. The one I have uses a battery, but I have seen others that use water flow to run the timer mechanism. I use mine when filling my fresh water tank so I can keep busy on other tasks.
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:17 AM   #12
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Thank goodness for your sink cabinet drawers!!

We'll say nice things as I'm sure your wife will give ya some words of wisdom at the most opportune time...
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:50 AM   #13
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AF Chap: bowats pretty much described it and where to get it. It's just a timer for a water hose. Most run off water power. One screw up through toilet like my neighbor had and it would be worth any price. What a mess.
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Old 12-18-2006, 11:31 AM   #14
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">you can pick up a water timer at Wally World </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Found one online at Lowes for $12.98 ... "The Gilmour 9200 Mechanical Water Timer:
Dial can be set for automatic shut-off at any point up to 700 gallons or 4 hours. Works with water pressure ranging from 15 PSI to 120 PSI. For $13 bucks, sounds like something worth having!!!
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Old 12-18-2006, 06:43 PM   #15
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We were winter camping in Conn. with a 5th wheel that really wasn't a winter camper a while back. We were using a 30lb tank of propane every 2 days just to keep it at 60 in the camper. We used the toilet sparingly but had a full tank when we left. I tried to dump but dump line was frozen solid. We made it to a rest stop in Penn where they had a dump station so I thought I'd give it a try. I hooked up hose and opened valve but nothing came out. I closed valve and disconnected hose. I opened valve and shot some water from hose into the end of sewer connection (dumb move). A few seconds after doing this a frozen piece came out and a stream of black water shot out 10 feet before it hit the ground. Needless to say it took me about an hour to clean up the mess and my DW watched the whole thing.
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:07 PM   #16
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I don't understand why one would flush the black or any other tank with the drain valve closed. What am I missing here?
If you do this it would seem prudent to have someone hold the toilet flush valve open to prevent water pressure build up.
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:03 AM   #17
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by C Zimm:
I don't understand why one would flush the black or any other tank with the drain valve closed. What am I missing here?
If you do this it would seem prudent to have someone hold the toilet flush valve open to prevent water pressure build up. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

You would do that to provide a better rush of water flowing across the bottom of the tank to help move any built up solids out and to better dissolve anything stuck to the sides of the tank.

The stack vent on the roof is there to prevent pressure build up otherwise the toilet would burp back at you when you tried to flush.

If you look at the plumbing diagrams of the coaches posted here that had backups though the sinks when forgetting the tank flusher on you can see that they all have a common vent stack that connects the black and grey vents together near the bathroom sink and then goes on up through the roof.
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:17 AM   #18
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The reason I close the valve is to bring the water level up high enough to flush the tank monitor contacts off. It also gives me enough pressure to clean my hose connection thoroughly. I also put about 5 gallons back into the tank when finished to keep pyramiding down. Just like any sewer it works best when kept wet.
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Old 12-19-2006, 10:44 AM   #19
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Neil V: You're certainly right on that, the vent pipe will vent for sure. Don't know what I was thinking! Thought I read somewhere in the past to always have the toilet valve open when back flushing if the drain valve is closed.
Guess it's just another cob web in the brain.
On the positive side: I've never experienced this sort of problem, been doing the "back flush" thing for over 15 years.
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