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Old 10-18-2016, 01:48 AM   #1
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Equalize black and grey tanks

Over the years I always seem to fill the grey tank first and the black is only 1/4 full Why couldn't you add a valve at the hose discharge and pull both grey and black tank valves to equalize the tanks. Water seeks it own level and gravity should do it. I f you opened the black slightly and let the gray in you shouldn't get black in the gray. And if you do so what you drain the black first anyway and just flush the gray tank...What do you think ???
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Old 10-18-2016, 02:53 AM   #2
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We just fill black with water to about 2/3s full when we dumb. I think the more liquid you have in the black the better it dumps.
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Old 10-18-2016, 03:06 AM   #3
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Several do this to their grey tanks, but not sure I'd be comfortable mixing the black in the process.
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Old 10-18-2016, 03:14 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by KNMIB View Post
We just fill black with water to about 2/3s full when we dumb. I think the more liquid you have in the black the better it dumps.
You missed the point I want to drain gray into black to get more space in gray tank...
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Old 10-18-2016, 03:38 AM   #5
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Well... my black tank is higher than the gray tank... the gray being shorter and flatter under the shower - don't think gravity would work the way you want in my setup...
We definitely fill the gray faster - normally I leave that open when hooked up to sewer... closing it a day or so ahead of when I plan to dump the black.
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Old 10-18-2016, 07:43 AM   #6
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Great idea. I've been doing that for years.
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Old 10-18-2016, 11:43 AM   #7
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Given that most of Thor's motorhomes have the bathroom sink plumbed to the black tank they kind of did that for you (by moving some of the "waste" from the grey to the black).

Even with that we still fill up the grey before the black when on long trips.
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Old 10-18-2016, 01:06 PM   #8
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For what it's worth, some small Airstream trailers have one combo tank for black and gray according to specs.

I don't know how they flush the hose after dumping. Would be interesting to find out if they have some other provisions like external rinse, or if it's just a little messier.

Granted, it's not exactly the same in that the single tank may be easier to access for cleaning than would be the gray tank of a motorhome if "stuff" backed into it unintentionally.
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Old 10-31-2016, 12:38 PM   #9
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When possible kitchen waste water goes in the toilet or in some cases in the bathroom sink to reduce the amount that gets in the gray water tank. For instance instead of filling the sink with water to wash the dishes, we fill a cooking pot. When the dishes are done, the soapy/dirty water from the pot goes in toilet. Left over drinks in bottles and cans goes in the toilet or bathroom sink.

Also using paper plates and plastic cups cuts down on the amount of gray water from washing dishes.
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Old 11-24-2016, 04:36 PM   #10
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I wonder why the tanks are the same size? It seems that the best use of the space would be (for example) a 50 gallon gray and a 25 gallon black water.
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Old 11-24-2016, 04:48 PM   #11
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Perhaps they expect RVers to drain the gray water tanks onto the ground when they can, whereas most are reluctant to do the same with black water.
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Old 11-24-2016, 05:45 PM   #12
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Avoiding the Dump Station Blues - RV Life

This is a link to an article about a guy who has designed a system to drain the grey to the black tank to lengthen the time between dumps. Costs $345 I think, but you can buy the design from him, I believe. Uses a pump to transfer from grey to black.
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Old 11-24-2016, 07:20 PM   #13
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Expanding on comment above about some Airstream trailers having only one combo tank, I also noticed in Noverber 2016 MotorHome Magazine that the 45-foot luxury Foretravel DP has freshwater capacity of 135 gallons, and

"Black/Gray Tank Capacity 145 gal (one holding tank)"


With newer dumping technologies maybe it makes more sense to consolidate the black and gray into one. It would not surprise me at all to see a trend in this direction because it solves other problems as well.
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Old 11-24-2016, 07:44 PM   #14
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I suspect that Corwin's contraption works as described, but using paper plates and bowls cuts down on the use of fresh water and the production of gray water quite well.
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Old 11-24-2016, 08:40 PM   #15
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I realize that the environmental costs of disposable dishes vs. washing dishes is not clearcut and noncontroversial. No more than disposable diapers vs. cloth diapers. Our personal feelings are that we choose to wash dishes rather than cut trees and throw away into landfills. Not the easy way but we rest easier not
doing more damage to the earth. Of course, if we were the strictest of tree-huggers we would not be driving a RV at all.
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Old 11-24-2016, 08:54 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chance View Post
Expanding on comment above about some Airstream trailers having only one combo tank, I also noticed in Noverber 2016 MotorHome Magazine that the 45-foot luxury Foretravel DP has freshwater capacity of 135 gallons, and

"Black/Gray Tank Capacity 145 gal (one holding tank)"


With newer dumping technologies maybe it makes more sense to consolidate the black and gray into one. It would not surprise me at all to see a trend in this direction because it solves other problems as well.
As far as I am aware, it is only some vintage Airstreams that have single tanks.

Personally I do not like the idea of allowing black tank matter to enter the grey tank for any reason. My main concern is the shower floor drain that is very close to the grey tank both in proximity and length of plumbing. If the grey tank does overfill for any reason (for instance a sink faucet failing or accidentally left open. I do not want fecal matter entering the shower floor and then possibly overflowing to the rest of the RV floor. The earlier idea of just allowing the black tank valve to open slightly is of no help, because turds are water soluble and liquefy readily. If you don't believe me, capture one and place in a glass of water.

For these reasons I would not buy an RV with one tank.

I use the method mentioned in a post above of leaving the grey water valve open when camping if I have a sewer hookup. I close it some time before I anticipate dumping the black tank.. I also use a Sewer Solution, which has a back washing capability.

I want the contents of the grey water tank to be as clean as possible in case some circumstance requires it to be drained onto the ground.

Ken
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Old 11-25-2016, 12:01 AM   #17
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Isn't that the same as brick and mortar homes? It will back up into the shower floor drain first.
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Old 11-25-2016, 02:58 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Ag&Au View Post
As far as I am aware, it is only some vintage Airstreams that have single tanks.

.....cut....

Ken
Ken, a few of the present smaller trailers are listed that way in specs. See picture below as one example. I do understand your valid concerns.

As to the Foretravel, I suppose that if you spend over a million on a luxury motorhome, it better come with safeguards to prevent poop from overflowing inside coach due to a full tank.
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Old 11-25-2016, 06:02 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Chance View Post
Ken, a few of the present smaller trailers are listed that way in specs. See picture below as one example. I do understand your valid concerns.

As to the Foretravel, I suppose that if you spend over a million on a luxury motorhome, it better come with safeguards to prevent poop from overflowing inside coach due to a full tank.
I stand corrected, and amazed. That is total ridiculous. One 21 gallon combo tank. It might be a small trailer, but I hope is also designed for leprechauns, with small waste output.

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Old 11-25-2016, 11:12 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Ag&Au View Post
As far as I am aware, it is only some vintage Airstreams that have single tanks.

Personally I do not like the idea of allowing black tank matter to enter the grey tank for any reason. My main concern is the shower floor drain that is very close to the grey tank both in proximity and length of plumbing. If the grey tank does overfill for any reason (for instance a sink faucet failing or accidentally left open. I do not want fecal matter entering the shower floor and then possibly overflowing to the rest of the RV floor. The earlier idea of just allowing the black tank valve to open slightly is of no help, because turds are water soluble and liquefy readily. If you don't believe me, capture one and place in a glass of water.

For these reasons I would not buy an RV with one tank.

I use the method mentioned in a post above of leaving the grey water valve open when camping if I have a sewer hookup. I close it some time before I anticipate dumping the black tank.. I also use a Sewer Solution, which has a back washing capability.

I want the contents of the grey water tank to be as clean as possible in case some circumstance requires it to be drained onto the ground.

Ken
I think you make several good points for not combining gray and black water tanks.
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