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Old 06-04-2018, 12:05 PM   #1
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Another Black tank ?

Still learning the ropes here about RVing and this forum has been a life saver in answering my many questions. We are at site (for 5 days) and the black water tank registers ⅔ full in my ACE 27.2 on the 4th+ day but the full light blinks once and goes back to ⅔. With us leaving in less than 24 hrs I hate to have to unhook to dump it and then back to rehook everything. I use the camp facilities but the misses refuses. My question is when the tank goes from 2/3 and then to full is there a “grace period” of a gallon or two? It seems like when your tank says ⅔ ( around 30 gallons of my 40 gallon tank) and then the light comes on for full there has to be a a little leeway.
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Old 06-04-2018, 12:24 PM   #2
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Yes, there is a "buffer" zone once it reads full. Minimize the use of your bathroom sink and you should be OK.
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Old 06-04-2018, 12:45 PM   #3
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if you're like us, you learn pretty quickly not to depend too much on the 'readouts'...they can be deceiving...but yes, even when it hits 'full', it's probably not really 'yet' completely 'full'... you'll probably know better when it's really full when your flushing no longer 'flushes' properly. If you have a gravity toilet with a foot pedal, then anytime you 'look' into the drain when you have the pedal down, you can 'see' if the water level is up to the toilet or not.
some RVs may also have a bathroom sink that drains into the black tank, but that's generally not enough 'extra' water to be concerned about.

if you don't 'like' to pack up and run over to the dump station, get you a smallish 15 gal roller container that you can relieve some of the tank with. You can then walk it or drive it over to the dump station, and keep the wife happy : ) (mine is the same way!)
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Old 06-04-2018, 12:48 PM   #4
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It might not be a bad time to start looking for a "favorite tree in the woods"...
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Old 06-04-2018, 01:38 PM   #5
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Those portable tanks are great for extended stays but be REAL CAREFUL when bleeding into them. Open valve slowly and partially. Anticipate full way before you get there. If it fills and you still got poopers in the hose...well...it can be really messy. If you use one of those often, its best to make a "short hose" (3 feet) for that use only and have a pitcher of water to flush that hose, remembering to save space for that as well.
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Old 06-04-2018, 02:06 PM   #6
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Old 06-07-2018, 06:10 PM   #7
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For most of us the sensors inside the tank get "soiled" and do not work reliably unless you have a tank rinse device. You just learn to roll with the punches.
There are some high dollar measuring systems that use exterior mounted sensors to alleviate that problem.
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Old 06-07-2018, 06:45 PM   #8
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Chewing your food a little better also helps.
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Old 06-07-2018, 06:48 PM   #9
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So does X-Lax
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Old 06-07-2018, 06:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Gritz Carlton View Post
Chewing your food a little better also helps.
Chewing is for sissies...
Give your colon something to wrestle with: it'll thank you for the exercise!
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Old 06-07-2018, 07:00 PM   #11
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QUOTE=Bob Denman;124371] Chewing is for sissies...
Give your colon something to wrestle with: it'll thank you for the exercise! [/QUOTE]

[
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Old 06-07-2018, 07:00 PM   #12
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your rig is likely new I'm guessing
And since you are getting some sort of reading I'm going to guess that they are working for now.
and since you are asking this, I'm guessing you can't see down into the tank when looking down the throat of the toilet.... Like mine with a pipe shooting off at an angle from the toilet...
and if it's only 2/3 you likely have a good ways to go yet.
On my rig anyway I can get a lot of flushes in after it starts reading full.

On my rig, the flushes start to gurgle a bit as the level reaches the top of the tank/bottom of that pipe. this happens a good bit past full. it's pretty obvious. and from that point there's still a flush or two to go....

Oh, and be mindful that the lavatory sink likely drains into the black tank.

I felt a lot more confident about this whole endevour after I had filled the tank up once or twice flushing it out and testing things. What I did was this...sitting in my driveway, I filled the blank tank with fresh water. At first, while connected to "city water" from my house, I ran the water by holding the toilet valve to flush. That was taking forever...so I drug a hose in through the door....still took forever before it started getting towards the top.
My suggestion is to do this...either at the end of your trip since your tank is already nearly full, or in your driveway some day so you're not rushing at the park dump....and you'll get a much better feel for what's going on.
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Old 06-07-2018, 07:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skip 500 View Post
QUOTE=Bob Denman;124371] Chewing is for sissies...
Give your colon something to wrestle with: it'll thank you for the exercise!
[[/QUOTE]

Don't even get me started about the use of hot peppers as a breath freshener...

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Old 06-07-2018, 08:35 PM   #14
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THOR #5432
When we had our Chateau I measured and calculated the tank above the top sensor and it was almost half the volume of the tank.
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Old 06-07-2018, 09:50 PM   #15
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THOR #8860

Do you think that was a poor design?

Or a poor implementation of a good one?
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Old 06-08-2018, 11:09 AM   #16
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There was about 5" of tank that went all the way across above the frame. Then it dropped down on the driver's side about 9". They evenly spaced the sensors on the tall part of the tank. Problem is the tall part was only about 14x14x14. The majority of the tank volume was in the 5" that ran the whole width of the MH. The top sensor was about 3" from the top of tanks.
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Old 06-08-2018, 11:55 AM   #17
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It sounds like a "Poor execution of a questionable design"; although I suspect that it is rampant throughout the industry!
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Old 06-16-2018, 07:38 PM   #18
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The real tip off

A couple years ago, I had the same questions with the full light flickering then settling back to 2/3. A day or so later, the unquestionable signal appeared that said "EMPTY THE TANK NOW!" As I flushed the john, a big brown bubble emerged from the throat of the toilet! No further questions were necessary. Later I found that this happens when the level of the liquid in the tank is above the bottom of the vent tube. In other words, it's time to dump! Even when all 4 lights are lit, there's still a little room left that may get you through the night. Take into consideration that your lavatory is also plumbed into the black tank.
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Old 06-17-2018, 12:47 PM   #19
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I use the SmartTote 2 to empty my tanks when on extended stays. It has 4 wheels and 18 gallon capacity. I can either pull it by hand or hook the handle onto the ball on the rear of the Jeep to transport it to the dump.

It says it has auto shut off but that doesn't account for what remains in the hose, so I watch the float. As soon as it moves I shut off the valve and so far no spills. It is a little bulky but fits nicely on its side in one off the bays. You can even strap it to your ladder on the rear of you RV.

I suggest doing your gray water first to make sure you have the hang of it before attempting the black water for the first time.

I know this wasn't your question, but this solves the concern of filling the tanks and I hated telling everyone to NOT use the toilet. Now I don't worry about it. Less stress and I love it. It gets a lot of use at our annual family reunion campout...6 families mostly with trailers and electric sites only.

Life is good!
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