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Old 08-17-2009, 01:00 AM   #1
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Cleaning the grey water and black water tanks

Does anyone have a sure fire way to clean the waste water tanks?? I bought my 2001 winnebago Adventurer three years ago and they almost never read empty when i know they are. I have tried everything from ice to calgone.
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Old 08-17-2009, 07:35 AM   #2
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Not sure about the sure fire way, but their are several postings on this issue. One suggested 5lbs ice cubes down the toilet just before leaving. I tried that with our other mh and it did work. The ice sloshing around helps to clean the side walls where the sensors are. On another forum there is also a formula called the GEO Method, maybe someone will help with finding it. The gray tank, after dumping I add 1/4 cup of bleach and guessing about 5 or so gallons and let it slosh around. Kinda like sanitizing the fresh water tank. The next stop I will need to dump again, so bleach is sanitizing only a few hours before adding more gray water, dishes , showers etc.
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Old 08-17-2009, 07:43 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by the57man View Post
Does anyone have a sure fire way to clean the waste water tanks?? I bought my 2001 winnebago Adventurer three years ago and they almost never read empty when i know they are. I have tried everything from ice to calgone.
There have been many posts on this subject. For a long time I had the same problem as you have. To start the correction procedure I filled the tank 1/2 full of water and added a 1/2 cup of dawn. I drove the MH on a round trip of 50 miles to throughly clean the tank. I than drained the tank and filled it again to almost full and drained the tank again.

My tank monitor still showed 1/3. Knowing my tank was clean I removed my one panel from the wall and adjusted he sensitivity pot on the back of the gage backing it off just enough to allow the 1/3 light to go off. It now works quite well. Once in a while the 1/3 light will stay on after draining the tank. I fill the tank 2/3 full with clean water and let it sit for a few minutes. After draining, the light will be off.

I hope I have helped you. Good luck.

Don & Bev Morgan Weyauwega WI, 05 Itasca Horizon 40KD, 400 HP Cummins, Delorme GPS LT 40, Toad 07 Saturn Vue AWD, Air Force One, TST 510 TPMS, Mayor of Weyauwega 2007 - 2013, Waupaca Co Board Supervisor 2010 - 2014
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Old 08-18-2009, 02:21 PM   #4
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We have a 2000 Winnebago Adventurer 35G & tried everything to get the panel to repeatably read correctly. The key word here is repeatably. I would clean the tanks, the panel read correct levels for several trips and then return to incorrect readings. I adjusted the sensitivity "pots" (located behind the panel) but nothing yielded satisfactory results. Winnebago offers an upgrade to the panel that replaces the thru-the-tank sensors with sensors that are located on the outside of the tank and a replacement LED board for the inside panel. Installation is straight forward, totally plug & play, no wires to cut or splice. It required about 1/2 hour per tank to replace the sensors, about 15 minutes to replace the panel LED board. I don't remember the exact cost, maybe $325.00 or about total, including shipping, but the new setup ALWAYS reads correctly and my frustration with inconsistent tank gages was reduced to zero!
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Old 08-18-2009, 03:51 PM   #5
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As posted there are different ways to clean the senors in the tank. But as mention, they will be faulty again. The only fix is to mount outside the tank senors. As for me, I am still living with inside the tanks senors! The only one I really pay attention too is "full". I know how many days I can get by on the gray & black water tanks.
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Old 08-18-2009, 04:42 PM   #6
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In my 5th wheel, I knew I was good for 3 showers... yes I take really long showers. And the kitchen had a separate grey water. Stupid sensors never seemed to work right from Day 1 (we bought it brand new).

In my new old Beaver, I'm still keeping track. So far, 4 showers and 1 dishwashing (combined tank) We shall see when the shower starts to fill - I might have to run outside with a towel!!!

Janshark in a 1991 Beaver Marquis and a Jeep Wrangler (the Beavertail) towed with a Blue Ox Aventa II towbar and M&G aux brake system.
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Old 08-18-2009, 08:23 PM   #7
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An easy way to make the sensors accurate again is replace the sensor buttons in the tanks. They cost about $2.00 each from Winnebago and take less than 5 minutes (each) to install. On the 32V the sensors are accessible from the water compartment without removing any panels. If you look up under the panel you'll see all the sensors for both the black & grey tanks. They're a type of wellnut (a nut imbedded in rubber, the rubber expands to seal the hole when the screw is tightened).

The sensor uses the liquid in the tank as a ground and lights the LED on the panel when it's covered. To replace them you just remove the screw from the sensor button with a flat blade screwdriver (leaving the wire attached to the screw). Push the sensor button inside the tank. Slip a new sensor in the hole, and reinstall the screw and wire. Be careful not to push the new sensor into the tank as you tighten the screw.

The old sensor will go out the drain the next time the tank is emptied. Be sure to fill and gravity drain the tanks a couple times if you intend to use a mascerator pump in the future. The old sensors can plug up the pump if they're not removed from the tank.
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