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Old 09-30-2015, 09:19 AM   #1
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Black Tank Valve/Switch

Recently purchased a 2013 AI from Camping World in El Paso. I was told they went through the entire coach and ensured me all the systems were functioning correctly. A couple of days ago I attempted to empty the black and gray tanks (both were 1/3 full) into my sewer trap. I followed the instructions and thought it was strange the these red arrows never lit up and when turning on the pump only a small amount would enter the hose. My initial thought was the drive way was too steep causing the waste to be unable to drain. Yesterday it hit me to check the fuse panel. There it was a completely empty no fuse in place to power the valves. So, I put a fuse in and then the real problem. The black tank switch does not light up and there is no noise of an opening valve. However the gray tank works perfectly, switch lights up and I can hear the valve actuator. So now I have to try to see if Camping World will fix this issue or am I on my own.

Looking for anyone with knowledge on how to correct this issue if I am left on my own.

Thank you
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Old 09-30-2015, 09:37 AM   #2
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Certainly try to get Camping World to fix it. Since it did blow the fuse it may just be something simple like a disconnected wire.


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Old 09-30-2015, 10:22 AM   #3
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As a general question related to the OP's issue, is there a recommended way to get used Interstates (or any RV) properly evaluated prior to purchase?

Last year, my husband and I hired a reputable third party to evaluate our vehicle, and their report, for which we paid a few hundred bucks, came back "clean". But we subsequently discovered three major functional issues that should have been flagged by any decent inspector, and all three of them triggered extensive repairs.

Even after the fact, we never managed to answer the basic question, "Who SHOULD we have hired instead to have done that job right?" It would be nice to be able to post for people some instructions on what they need to be looking for in the way of an inspector and how to find such a person or business. Surely with about 30 million RVs on the road in this country, someone has been able to define how a buyer is supposed to tell the good from the bad where inspections and assurances are concerned.
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Old 09-30-2015, 01:34 PM   #4
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Even after the fact, we never managed to answer the basic question, "Who SHOULD we have hired instead to have done that job right?" It would be nice to be able to post for people some instructions on what they need to be looking for in the way of an inspector and how to find such a person or business. Surely with about 30 million RVs on the road in this country, someone has been able to define how a buyer is supposed to tell the good from the bad where inspections and assurances are concerned.
The maritime industry has marine surveyors, as well as a self-governing body or them, the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors.

As far as I know, the RV industry has no comparable group or organization. The closest you can come is an individual RVIA-certified master technician, who theoretically would have the necessary know-how to inspect an RV prior to purchase, but who probably has a job repairing RVs and doesn't have the time or inclination to do inspections that won't lead to repair work for his shop.

So that's my one-and-only recommendation when looking for an RV inspector, to ensure that he's an RVIA-certified master technician. A master technician is certified in body, chassis, plumbing, electrical, and appliances, all five of the RVIA specialties.
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Old 09-30-2015, 01:39 PM   #5
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Didn't your AI come with a limited warranty from Camping World? Perhaps 90 days?


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Old 09-30-2015, 02:14 PM   #6
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Correction on my post above. Since the fuse, once installed, did NOT blow - perhaps it's just a wire disconnected.


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Old 09-30-2015, 02:36 PM   #7
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I hope it's something as simple as a wire disconnect. Talked to my salesman who spoke with his manager today. He told me to bring it in and they would fix it.
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Old 09-30-2015, 04:33 PM   #8
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Black Tank Valve/Switch

From my experience the black tank valve can get jammed with debris, particularly if you "try it out" by opening and closing it without using the macerator. Debris from the black tank can fall down into it and then closing it can trap it in there. You should always allow the contents to run through when it's pretty full, or flush through with additional water.


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Old 09-30-2015, 08:05 PM   #9
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Or it may be a relay. On mine the relays are near the driver side rear wheels - accessible by lifting the side-facing seat.
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Old 09-30-2015, 08:28 PM   #10
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A PDI, pre delivery inspection should be done prior to purchase. There are PDI lists available on various RV forums. These contain mostly generic items to be checked common to most RV types. Some specialized PDI lists for specific RV types are out there if you search around. Even if you hire an expert to do the checking you would use the PDI list to compare to his suggested inspection list. We have a Prevost Bus we bought new in 2009 and I used PDI lists in my discussion with the independent inspector we hired prior to purchase. The AI we bought last year was new and we did not hire an inspector but we tested every system on the day we purchased it.
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Old 10-01-2015, 06:48 AM   #11
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The maritime industry has marine surveyors, as well as a self-governing body or them, the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors.

As far as I know, the RV industry has no comparable group or organization. The closest you can come is an individual RVIA-certified master technician, who theoretically would have the necessary know-how to inspect an RV prior to purchase, but who probably has a job repairing RVs and doesn't have the time or inclination to do inspections that won't lead to repair work for his shop.

So that's my one-and-only recommendation when looking for an RV inspector, to ensure that he's an RVIA-certified master technician. A master technician is certified in body, chassis, plumbing, electrical, and appliances, all five of the RVIA specialties.
As near as I can tell, there is no way to search for RVIA-certified people by geographic area. I checked both their industry and consumer websites. Best a person could do is search their dealer list, and then ask the individual dealers for information on the availability of RVIA-certified people. Which I did, and what was one of the dealers that popped up in my area? Camping World, the same outfit that sold the OP his rig with its non-functioning black system. Splendid.

In many cases, I guess it's just not going to be practical to get a decent inspection on a short time frame. Once my husband and I acquired our vehicle, then we did lots of local digging and found the good general RV service people in our area. But they often have wait times of a month or more.

Maybe one possible stopgap for newbies is Facetime. If anyone is thinking about buying a T1N Interstate, feel free to PM me. I'll tell you everything that our paid inspector overlooked, maybe even show you over the phone.
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Old 10-01-2015, 07:47 AM   #12
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Which I did, and what was one of the dealers that popped up in my area? Camping World, the same outfit that sold the OP his rig with its non-functioning black system. Splendid.
Just because someone at Camping world is an RVIA master certified technician on their staff does not mean that's the person who they assigned to do the inspection.

I never said it would be easy to find one, just that using an RVIA master certified technician is just about the only guarantee you'll get that the inspection will be performed by someone with both the training and experience to do the job properly.

I'm sure there are many non-RVIA-certified inspectors who are competent to do RV inspections, including many here on the Forums. But without glowing references from their past clients there's just no way to know for sure about the competency of a non-RVIA-certified person doing inspections until after the inspection is over and you have the results.
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Old 10-01-2015, 03:53 PM   #13
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These valves need to be exercised occasionally. I replaced the black tank valve and found the old one not broken but I cycled it back and forth, it seemed to work better. That said I installed the new one a little tight and will probably take it out after winterizing and bench cycle it.
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