Grey water tanks? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-25-2020, 07:26 PM   #1
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Grey water tanks?

We always had (and used) a grey water tank in our Scamp. Nothing more than soapy water from the sink ever went into it, and when we came to a rv dump facility, we emptied the tank (there’s little point in buying a super light egg and hauling a bunch of used dish water down the highway). We spoke with Armadillo trailers today about putting together a possible custom egg and we were surprised to learn that grey water tanks are not an option they offer. Do other egg owners on this site simply empty their sinks out a hose drain onto the ground when they aren’t hooked up to a campground sewer system? I would think provincial, state, and national parks wouldn’t even allow that. Am I missing something? When we put together our 13 ft Scamp ten years ago, the sales agent advised we put one in because some campgrounds wouldn’t let us camp without a way to collect wastewater. Or do people just use a bucket and drain it manually? If so, where?
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Old 02-25-2020, 09:05 PM   #2
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Am I missing something? When we put together our 13 ft Scamp ten years ago, the sales agent advised we put one in because some campgrounds wouldn’t let us camp without a way to collect wastewater. Or do people just use a bucket and drain it manually? If so, where?

That is bizarre. I looked over all the specs and options and see no reference to grey or black tanks ( optional porta potti ). Draining grey water on the ground in most parks would get you kicked out. Not having self contained grey and black would prevent you from entering at all.

Perhaps it comes with an optional bush to pee behind.
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Old 02-25-2020, 10:09 PM   #3
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Wolverine Tuff Smart Bottles makes a durable exterior portable collapsible tank which can be used for clean or gray water and are acceptable at any campground or park.Happier Camper uses a modified version to fit there modular sink and are very effective and simple to use.
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Old 02-25-2020, 10:56 PM   #4
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There are some state parks (Salt Fork in SE Ohio comes to mind) where they have grey water dump sites spread through the campground. Really a pretty nice feature. In some provincial parks in Canada it is acceptable to dump grey water in the bushes. But in a very high percentage of campgrounds a Grey water collection tank either internal or external is mandatory and if you’re washing dishes outside, dumping dishwater is not permitted. I was disgusted by parents who sent their
Children to wash dishes at the fresh water fill at Algonac in Michigan when I camped there two years ago at the Fourth of July. With that level of Policing and camp hosting I won’t be returning, ever.
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Old 02-26-2020, 06:47 AM   #5
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Here's the rule in Minnesota state parks: Liquid wastes from cooking and washing shall be disposed of in the sump provided for that purpose. If a sump is not provided, the wastes may be disposed of on the surface of the ground at least 150 feet from a water body in a manner that does not endanger a water supply, pollute a surface water, create a nuisance, or otherwise constitute a hazard to the public health or safety.
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Old 02-26-2020, 07:00 AM   #6
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Not offering holding tanks is really strange. Someone is paying a lot for a hard sided tent they have to tow Obviously there are exceptions but thankfully very few places permit draining gray water onto the campsite.
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Old 02-26-2020, 08:01 AM   #7
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Gross and dangerous options from Armadillo

[QUOTE=Do other egg owners on this site simply empty their sinks out a hose drain onto the ground when they aren’t hooked up to a campground sewer system? I would think provincial, state, and national parks wouldn’t even allow that. Am I missing something? When we put together our 13 ft Scamp ten years ago, the sales agent advised we put one in because some campgrounds wouldn’t let us camp without a way to collect wastewater. Or do people just use a bucket and drain it manually? If so, where?[/QUOTE]

I see that Armadillo offers both a sink as well as an outdoor shower. With no tank, I'm assuming their sink plumbing drains outside beneath the trailer. Regarding your question about national parks, neither of these options are allowed to be used in Yellowstone where my wife and I happen to volunteer as campground hosts. Besides it being just plain gross, it is a bear attractant to have soapy water and food particles dumping straight to the ground. From a bear perspective this not only puts you at risk but all of your neighbors.
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Old 02-26-2020, 08:17 AM   #8
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Mike: Thanks for mentioning Wolverine Smart Bottle as I can see many uses in camp or at home for those: https://www.smartbottleinc.com/ We used a bucket for gray with our pop-up camper sink, and never had an issue anywhere. I don't believe that external tanks would be that much of an issue, or maybe I just see it that way since we started out with tents and tent campers. People are either responsible, or they aren't and it isn't dependent on whether they have external or internal gray water tanks. Those tanks on the tiny trailers are generally very small. I once saw a video on BLM land where people were waiting in line over an hour to dump their tanks!
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Old 02-26-2020, 09:48 AM   #9
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Make your own blue tote. This is a document I created a number of years ago, so some of the model nu mbers may have changed. But, you'd get the idea.
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Old 02-26-2020, 09:55 AM   #10
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I saw a guy at a dry camping site on private land use a device he hooked up to a regular 5/8 hose hooked up to his Grey Water outlet via an adapter. The grey water would flow slowly into the device and evaporate. Obviously you would need to regulate your grey water use but he said it worked great and didn't put the grey water on the ground. If he's at the same place again this year I will try to find out what it is.
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Old 02-26-2020, 10:21 AM   #11
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I think many here with larger trailers and full tank systems don’t get that most small trailers especially without bathrooms do not come with gray tanks and there are thousands of them out there and have been for many years. Just because they don’t have a gray tank does not make them irresponsible with their waste. I have seen many older trailers with leaky tanks or fittings that can contaminate areas just as well ( watch RV with Robin Williams ) Many choose smaller trailers with out tanks to keep there camping pure and simple and most are just as responsible as others.
FG rv forum is a forum for Fg enthusiasts which really started out with owners of small trailers mostly under 15 feet and has lately been devided by ever increasing owners of larger trailers that may not get that many enjoy their small trailers much the same.
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Old 02-26-2020, 10:45 AM   #12
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Thanks. These posts help. I think I was initially shocked that Armadillo wouldn’t offer a grey water tank as an option, since the tanks save many problems for a pretty low initial outlay. And much of Armadillo trailers seem very nicely appointed. Using an external bucket/catchment would certainly work, just more hooking up/unhooking for road trips, which is more or less how we used our Scamp. We rarely set up to stay in it for a week or more.
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Old 02-26-2020, 11:06 AM   #13
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If a campground accommodates tents, they have some provision for grey water. Rules vary, and most have been covered: scatter on ground (usually with some restrictions), pour into drains provided, dishwashing stations at bathhouses... Always ask about local rules and best practices at check-in.

We only camp in locations that include tents. We wash dishes outside and dispose of the water in whatever manner the tenters do. We have encountered all three practices mentioned earlier. National Parks tend to be more restrictive than state and local campgrounds.

Some RV-only places require a grey tank but allow a closed external tank (blue boy or 5-gal. bucket with lid and hose fitting) in lieu of an onboard tank. The size should be dictated by what you can comfortably carry and empty. Never collect quantities of grey water in an open bucket- it attracts insects and critters.

Some places require full self-containment, in which case a bathroom with a toilet and onboard black and grey tanks is necessary, and the Armadillo is not the right trailer for you. Those are mostly of the RV park/resort variety. There are also a few popular BLM boondocking areas and beach sites without facilities that require full self-containment.
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Old 02-26-2020, 11:08 AM   #14
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Thanks. These posts help. I think I was initially shocked that Armadillo wouldn’t offer a grey water tank as an option, since the tanks save many problems for a pretty low initial outlay. And much of Armadillo trailers seem very nicely appointed. Using an external bucket/catchment would certainly work, just more hooking up/unhooking for road trips, which is more or less how we used our Scamp. We rarely set up to stay in it for a week or more.
5 gallon external catch tank or 5 gallon built in tank really not much difference except one will have to be emptied before you move and the other will have to be emptied after you move.or you will have to move the trailer just to empty it or use a tote which is essentially the same.
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Old 02-26-2020, 12:52 PM   #15
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5 gallon external catch tank

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Or do people just use a bucket and drain it manually? If so, where?
My sister used a 5 gallon jug properly marked.
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Old 02-26-2020, 01:14 PM   #16
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Onboard tanks are typically larger (I think Scamp's is around 20 gallons), allowing for longer stays without dumping. With an portable tank around 5-6 gallons is about the most you'd want due to weight.

There are advantages and disadvantages to both. At our favorite CA beach spot, we can dump our wash water one basin or bucket at a time for free at convenient drains serving each cluster of four sites... or pay $10 to empty the grey tank at the dump station, where there's often a long line at check-out time.

Of course, just because you have a grey tank doesn't mean you have to use it if there's a convenient alternative.

I wonder what percent of new non-bath 13' Scamps are now sold with the optional grey tank? I also wonder how (and how much) owners of non-bath Scamp 13’s with a grey tank use it?
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Old 02-26-2020, 02:25 PM   #17
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We always had (and used) a grey water tank in our Scamp. Nothing more than soapy water from the sink ever went into it, and when we came to a rv dump facility, we emptied the tank (there’s little point in buying a super light egg and hauling a bunch of used dish water down the highway). We spoke with Armadillo trailers today about putting together a possible custom egg and we were surprised to learn that grey water tanks are not an option they offer. Do other egg owners on this site simply empty their sinks out a hose drain onto the ground when they aren’t hooked up to a campground sewer system? I would think provincial, state, and national parks wouldn’t even allow that. Am I missing something? When we put together our 13 ft Scamp ten years ago, the sales agent advised we put one in because some campgrounds wouldn’t let us camp without a way to collect wastewater. Or do people just use a bucket and drain it manually? If so, where?
You cannot dump grey water on the ground anywhere hardly. It attracts bears, other animals, bugs and is bad for the environment. Many places don't even allow an outside bucket to catch the water. A lot of places now require inside holding tanks if you have a sink of any kind. Toilet or porta potty must contain the stuff. Get a holding tank installed and just dump it at the dump station. Or get one of those blue tanks to dump into and take it to the dump station. We use both methods. If we are dry camping for a long time we use our blue tank then take it to the dump station so we don't have to move the trailer to dump. If a manufacturer doesn't offer a tank then I'd not have the trailer unless there's no sink.
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Old 02-26-2020, 03:16 PM   #18
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FG rv forum is a forum for Fg enthusiasts which really started out with owners of small trailers mostly under 15 feet and has lately been devided by ever increasing owners of larger trailers that may not get that many enjoy their small trailers much the same.
I understand you may have a dog in this fight which may make you aware of things I've missed, but I've never noticed anything of the sort on FGRV. This discussion about gray tanks doesn't really have anything to do with the size of the trailer. The classic 13' Scamp can have a gray tank. It's hard to figure why a tank wouldn't be at least an option on an expensive trailer.
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Old 02-26-2020, 04:04 PM   #19
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Permanently mounted onboard grey tanks are the exception, not the norm, in small no-bath trailers, including molded fiberglass and small tent trailers. The notion that if you have a sink you must have an onboard grey water tank is not supported by facts. That is not to say there aren't campgrounds that have such a rule, but again, it's the exception, not the norm.

A few small no-bath trailers offer a small, portable tank inside an interior cabinet, but Scamp stands alone in the 13' class in offering a large 20 gal. underbody mounted tank that drains through a conventional RV sewer hose. The engineering was done because they offered a shower in some versions. It was only later they realized there was demand for the tank in non-bath models.
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Old 02-26-2020, 04:26 PM   #20
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FG rv forum is a forum for Fg enthusiasts which really started out with owners of small trailers mostly under 15 feet and has lately been devided by ever increasing owners of larger trailers that may not get that many enjoy their small trailers much the same.
Actually the original owner and developer of FiberglassRV, Mike Sanders, had a 17' Casita. I joined shortly after and I had/have a 16 foot Scamp. In the very early days, 16' & 17' Casitas with the norm here, not the exception.
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