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Old 10-22-2015, 11:49 AM   #15
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When the tank is emptied, there is about two or three gallons of water or more that never empties that is left in the 3" pvc pipe from the tanks to the macerator.
One foot of 3" pipe holds 0.3 gallons of water. I suspect the amount of water retained in the pipes between the black and gray tanks and the macerator pump is less than a gallon, because even if the pipes are completely full they'd only hold about 3 gallons, and they're not completely full anymore by the time the macerator pump starts sucking air.

But your point is well taken anyway. Make extensive use of your black tank flush fitting so that the macerator pump is pumping clear water from the black tank before you winterize; you don't want black water spilling out the connection when you drain the 3" pipe— especially since you have to crawl underneath to do it and getting a face-full of black water by accident would be a crapload of no fun.
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Old 10-22-2015, 01:34 PM   #16
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There's at least six feet of pipe there, if not more. When I open up the cap, I'm really amazed how much pours out. It goes on for quite a while and takes several minutes to completely drain out. Because the bottom of the pipe is on the same level as the bottom of the tank, I think what is occurring is that liquid in the tanks is also not completely draining out after the air/liquid mix starts in. I may just take a five gallon bucket and measure it next time to see.
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Old 10-22-2015, 04:08 PM   #17
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To show why there is so much water held in the pipe, take a look at the way the plumbing is designed. The grey tank has a very large horizontal surface and since it mostly stops pushing water out the hose after air enters the pump, that's where it stays. As you can see from the schematic, a very large surface in the tank will also hold water if the valve is open. Plus, there's more like 6 to 8 feet of pipe, even if you close the valve.

So, that's why it's more likely to be closer to 2 or 3 gallons or more and why antifreeze in severe winters likely won't (and wasn't) enough to protect the pump.

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Old 10-22-2015, 07:02 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by gmillerok1 View Post
To show why there is so much water held in the pipe, take a look at the way the plumbing is designed. The grey tank has a very large horizontal surface and since it mostly stops pushing water out the hose after air enters the pump, that's where it stays. As you can see from the schematic, a very large surface in the tank will also hold water if the valve is open. Plus, there's more like 6 to 8 feet of pipe, even if you close the valve.

So, that's why it's more likely to be closer to 2 or 3 gallons or more and why antifreeze in severe winters likely won't (and wasn't) enough to protect the pump.

Here's a thought… If you use some leveling blocks to un-level the van by raising the passenger side when dumping, that might help.
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Old 10-22-2015, 07:35 PM   #19
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I have a place where I can park the passenger side as the high side. It seems to help dramatically. I pumped from level and pumped again when tilted.....wow what a difference.
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