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Old 07-27-2011, 05:46 AM   #1
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Holding tank odor control.

We have used Bleach in our Black water holding tank to control odors.

However: This might be a really bad idea !

A tip from Sharon: Suggest that using Clorox or other types of bleach in a Porta Potty or Camper toilet's holding tanks, for odor control, could result in harmful vapors when mixed with Urine.


A tip from Darnelle says "Mr. Clean" works really well.

Of course the Blue Stuff works too, but is kind of expensive.

What are you folks using?

Kip
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Old 07-27-2011, 06:15 AM   #2
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Hi: Kip in Ga. ...We use "The Geo Method" for RV's,( Google search required) for both grey water and black water tanks. It's just laundry products so it's environmentally safe for septic systems. Calgon+ your fav. laundry detergent+ bleach. We've found we can't use fragrance free stuff as then you still get odours!!! Make sure that all your drain line traps are full of water too!!! Our shower has a shallow V trap rather than a P trap and seems to empty itself while towing. Our grey water smells worse at times than the black water. Probably food bits from washing dishes!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 07-27-2011, 07:13 AM   #3
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Alf,
Any chance you can put a plug in your shower drain to keep the fumes in the tank ?

Bill K


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Hi: Kip in Ga. ...We use "The Geo Method" for RV's,( Google search required) for both grey water and black water tanks. It's just laundry products so it's environmentally safe for septic systems. Calgon+ your fav. laundry detergent+ bleach. We've found we can't use fragrance free stuff as then you still get odours!!! Make sure that all your drain line traps are full of water too!!! Our shower has a shallow V trap rather than a P trap and seems to empty itself while towing. Our grey water smells worse at times than the black water. Probably food bits from washing dishes!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 07-27-2011, 07:30 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Alf S. View Post
Hi: Kip in Ga. ...We use "The Geo Method" for RV's,( Google search required) for both grey water and black water tanks. It's just laundry products so it's environmentally safe for septic systems. Calgon+ your fav. laundry detergent+ bleach. We've found we can't use fragrance free stuff as then you still get odours!!! Make sure that all your drain line traps are full of water too!!! Our shower has a shallow V trap rather than a P trap and seems to empty itself while towing. Our grey water smells worse at times than the black water. Probably food bits from washing dishes!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
We don't wash dishes, we throw the paper and plastic products away. The only glass stuff we take is coffee cups.

Ann wipes out the "Tefflon Coated" frying pan with a wet then a dry paper towel. Then a quick soapy wash in the sink. A trick she learned from all those cooking shows she watches. So in reality there are no solids going into our gray tank, only hand washing dirt and soap.

Kip
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Old 07-27-2011, 08:40 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Kip in Ga. View Post
We have used Bleach in our Black water holding tank to control odors.

However: This might be a really bad idea !

A tip from Sharon: Suggest that using Clorox or other types of bleach in a Porta Potty or Camper toilet's holding tanks, for odor control, could result in harmful vapors when mixed with Urine.


A tip from Darnelle says "Mr. Clean" works really well.

Of course the Blue Stuff works too, but is kind of expensive.

What are you folks using?

Kip
Here is a product that does what it claims, cheaply, safely, responsibly and effectively....
OD-410 ODORLOS HOLDING TANK TREATMENT

We buy the 5qt jug and then refill the small dispenser jug, seven years and we are still on our second jug. With the small Scamp holding tank, it can be used generously without using much.
Another point... frequent rinsing and cleaning of the hot water tank may be just as important for odor control as the holding tanks,plus if you have air conditioning, it is wise run it in a closed trailer for a couple hours unoccupied before storage, it acts as a dehumidifier and a thoroughly dry trailer is less likely to produce odors.
Removal of odor causing items between trips can help as well, since coffee, laundry soap,snacks, tobacco etc. may smell good individually,they may not play well together locked in a closed trailer.
Gym shoes, damp jackets, tobacco smoke, and pet supplies are also smells to which you can become used to, but which others may notice and find offensive in such a closed space. Changing bedding ,removing laundry and vacuuming inside may also help.
Running a little fresh water down the drains can help as well.
Room freshners, like glade,febreze, or fresh flowers can help but like the "frictionsway" issue, they can only be truly effective when the trailer is clean and odor free to before using them.
Even with a clean and pleasant trailer,the screen door and fantastic fan can bring the oudoors in and help a lot when guests arrive. Four people in a scamp 13 is not the same as four people in a house.
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Old 07-27-2011, 08:46 AM   #6
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Last year we took apart a trailer and the residuals in the gray tank were interesting. Though no apparant solids go in, solids seem to be created from the liquids, grease and the like.

I agree that a gray tank can be more foul smelling than a black. After dumping I always add a little water to the tanks so our journey can loosen and capture what remains. On occasion I have added a little bit of Dawn to the grey tank with the water.

On occasion I'll add a lot of water and as we travel let the water work it's magic, dumping upon arrival at the destination.

We of course close all traps while driving. This helps keep water in the trap creating some measure of vacuum, reducing the possibility of a trap draining.

Norm
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Old 07-27-2011, 11:10 AM   #7
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Calgon water softener in powder form, works for me.
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Old 07-27-2011, 12:24 PM   #8
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Cool Bacterial Agent

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Originally Posted by Kip in Ga. View Post
What are you folks using?
Phred's Poop Sheets

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Active BACTERIA will do the job. A properly set up and maintained system won't need much either. As opposed to chemicals (where more and more must be used with less and less effect), when adding bacteria "less is better." It's important that you follow the instructions. You must start with a clean tank (or residual chemicals will defeat the action). You need to start the tank with a few gallons of water. You shouldn't add the bacteria until there's a deposit of human waste in there. If you do it right, it will take about three, in normal use, dumps before you have a good, renewable system. You can then keep it going with only small additions of bacteria every other dump or even fewer.

WHICH BACTERIAL AGENTS ARE THE BEST? There are several good ones. Homeowner septic tank chemicals work. They're readily available in most supermarkets and cheap. They are not fast working, which is why RVers are sometimes dissatisfied with them, but they were designed for thousands of gallons and a lot of time, not the short time demanded by the 40-100 gallons in most RVs. "Rid-X" is the best of these.
I use "Rid-X"
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Old 07-27-2011, 01:00 PM   #9
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Phred's Poop Sheets



I use "Rid-X"
If the dumpstation goes into a septic field then you are probably doing them a favor using Rid-X, but the enzymes in Rid-X are designed to feed and maintain healthy levels of digestive bacteria in your septic system.
Unlike Septic tanks, RV holding tanks are flushed regularly and so you need something designed for that purpose like Odorlos or it's equvalent.
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Old 07-28-2011, 05:25 AM   #10
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When you folks use the blue stuff, Odorlos, or the like, how much do you put in the camper black tank?

Directions say to use 4 oz. AND that will treat up to 40 gallons.

The 4 oz seems excessive for smaller tanks such as our 15 gallon ones and Porta-Potties.

Kip
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Old 07-28-2011, 05:47 AM   #11
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just use a tablespoon....that's what I do, but remember to clean it(the spoon) before using again
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Old 07-28-2011, 06:28 AM   #12
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just use a tablespoon....that's what I do, but remember to clean it(the spoon) before using again
Do ya just drop the spoon in the tank and catch it when dumpin the tank?

Sorry, couldn't help myself!

Thanks for the info!
Kip
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Old 07-28-2011, 09:04 AM   #13
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I only have a 5 gallon jug sitting alongside my Burro as my gray tank, but so far so good on the odors. I use Dr. Bronner's castile peppermint soap for dish cleanup (would rather do dishes than create trash) and my little graywater jug smells pleasantly minty.
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Old 07-28-2011, 09:33 AM   #14
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Cool

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... the enzymes in Rid-X are designed to feed and maintain healthy levels of digestive bacteria in your septic system.
Unlike Septic tanks, RV holding tanks are flushed regularly ...
When I am not out camping, the Fiber Stream is now in constant use as a guest house in the back yard. I only empty the black tank when it's full.
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Old 07-31-2011, 01:36 AM   #15
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I've just posted info on the thread dealing with cleaning porta potties about a product called Wetchem RV Zyme-Out. It does a great job of eliminating odor in the porta potty. It appears to be effective for holding tanks as well. Here is the link to their website: Westchem Industrial Water Treatment
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Old 08-02-2011, 10:01 AM   #16
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Just returned from 3 weeks on the road & did a lot of dry camping so all the tanks were well used. While away I ran out of the my bottle of blue stuff for the black water tank so purchased some stuff in pre made gel packs walled Porta-pak by Walex. The portitions are most likely more than needed for the small tank but I noted it had a much freasher (not so chemical) smell to it than the previous stuff even when the temps were in the 90's.

I dont use paper dishes or cups so I do dishes at least a couple of times a day and do scrape the dishes & pots off well before washing and give the coffee pot a rinse outside before washing. Once home I clean the grey water tank out and shoot the hose into the holding tank from the dump pipe and even though it was dumped during the trip every couple of days it is amazing how much stuff comes out. Once clean I leave the cap open to let it air out. Once a year I do a serious clean out and use the water softner in it as well. Seems to work - never had an odour problem from the grey tank.
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Old 08-11-2011, 11:52 PM   #17
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Calgon water softener in powder form, works for me.



I am late to this post, but I have used Calgon for years! Even in our Class A. The only way to go. I have never had my black/grey smell since using it. And it's inexpensive.......... I use a cup each time I drain the tanks and a gallon of water.
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Old 06-18-2012, 09:54 PM   #18
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Floyd, where did you order a 5 qt bottle of this stuff? I only see it in 4 oz on this site OD-410 ODORLOS HOLDING TANK TREATMENT
Thanks
Wht I am using now in those little packets only lasts a day or two with only #1 in it. I need something better. :-)
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Old 06-18-2012, 10:42 PM   #19
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I just bought some Happy Camper odorless holding tank treatment. non toxic mineral base. Have not given a try yet but it comes highly recommended on other rv forums. It is guaranteed to get rid of odors. The cost is very reasonable.

Happy Camper - Odorless Holding Tank Treatment Black and Grey Water
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Old 06-19-2012, 08:44 AM   #20
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Calgon-1 cup + 1 gal water.
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