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Old 08-25-2004, 01:28 AM   #1
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Thumbs up Black & Gray Water Tank's Handles Stuck

On my last trip out, I went to dump both tanks prior to breaking camp and discovered that the dump valves were stuck tight~
Since it was hot as heck out, I was sweating & under pressure to get on the roadway..(Wanted to beat the traffic rush.)
We had made ample use of the campground "comfort stations", I decided to resolve this issue at a later time. My logic was: The gray water tank had minumim water (if any) and the black water tank had, at most, 5 gallons of waste water.
I visited the A/S this pass weekend, armed with a very nice e-mail from David71, who wrote of a similar problem & what he did to resolve his problem.
Quote:
I'm not sure your rig will be the same as mine, but I will try to describe how I got my tank to open. I took off the drain cap on the bottom of my rig and sprayed alot of silicone on all the surfaces I could reach. I also sprayed silicone on and around the pull handle. My pull handle is located at the left rear of the trailer between the trailer and the bumper. I let it sit for a day and they tried to pull it. It still wouldn't open so I used a claw hammer and wrapped the claw part around the pull handle. I then used a board behind the hammer so I could pull on the hammer like I was pulling out a nail but not damage the surface of the rig. I figured if it didn't work I would probably break the handle, but would have to replace it anyway if I ever wanted to get it open. It gave just a little bit and I pushed it back in and pulled again. Eventually it pulled out the full length and I sprayed silicone on the length of it. Now it opens and closed easily. Lots of luck. Let me know how you make out.
Larry71
I followed David suggestion and likewise, spray heavy duty silicone all over the tube's surface as well as the interior wells where the tubes passed thru.
But, it just wouldn't give even a hint of a movement.
Time for a Bloody Mary and to reflect how best to approach this..
After sitting over night, I went back out the next day to try again..
This time the gray water valve worked on the first pull...Whew..thanks god there wasn't anything behind it..I hadn't hooked up the sewer hose yet~
Before I tried the black water release, I got my gloves out and, then hooked up the sewer hose..lol
At first I tried to get a board of some kind behind the handle but, either my setup was different or I was trying to use the wrong size for the job..I just gave up on that aspect. Next, I tried to pull once more on the handle, it just won't move..More spray and, another Bloody Mary. .couple hours goes by..
Tried once more, with just a hint of movement` Alright~, now we're getting somewhere..I took a hammer and slightly tapped it back in, pulled and tapped it again..Did this about 5 or 6 time, when all of a sudden the black water tank valve came all the way out..Dump process was completed in abt 3 to 5 minutes..I then worked both handles back and forth to insure that they were really working properly..Whew
Clean'd up the work area and after putting everything away..Went to wash up the hose, etc with bleach..Time for another Bloody Mary..
Thanks Davied71, I owe you one~

ciao
53FC
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Old 08-25-2004, 07:24 AM   #2
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Thanks for the details. Can you tell what caused the valves to stick? Did it happen suddenly, or were the valves getting noticeably 'stickier' over time. Were they Thetford or Valterra valves. Is silicone spray a good preventive measure also?
Sorry for all the questions.
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Old 08-25-2004, 08:08 AM   #3
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No problem..

Quote:
Originally Posted by markdoane
Thanks for the details. Can you tell what caused the valves to stick? Did it happen suddenly, or were the valves getting noticeably 'stickier' over time. Were they Thetford or Valterra valves. Is silicone spray a good preventive measure also?
Sorry for all the questions.
The questions are fine..
As best I can recall, it seemed as if it was a process of gradually sticking more and more recently.
So much so, that I tried lubrication treatment products late this past Spring.
It's a Thetford product.
As for the preventiveness of silicone, all I can comment is:
It certainly doesn't hurt to use it. I'm sure there's a better approach for use within the interior.(for the rubber valves)
My problems were caused, I feel, to an in-freq use of the system..
I just feel lucky that it didn't come to a more serious route of repairs.
Again..thanks for your questions..
ciao
53FC
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Old 08-25-2004, 09:17 AM   #4
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Hello 53FC,
Thanks for your insight about infrequent use possibly causing this. It raises another question for me. You said you used lubrication treatment products after you noticed the stickyness. Should we use those treatments as preventative? and if so how requently? What do others do? When you say infrequent use of system, how long are you talking? Winter, 6 months, year or longer? Thanks in advance for your comments.
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Old 08-25-2004, 09:34 AM   #5
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This is good to know as my 1962 Overlander has a valve stuck in the open position for who knows how many years. I will try this method!
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Old 08-25-2004, 02:09 PM   #6
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Additional thoughts~

Quote:
Originally Posted by M&M CAPECOD
Hello 53FC,
Thanks for your insight about infrequent use possibly causing this. It raises another question for me. You said you used lubrication treatment products after you noticed the stickyness. Should we use those treatments as preventative? and if so how requently? What do others do? When you say infrequent use of system, how long are you talking? Winter, 6 months, year or longer? Thanks in advance for your comments.
M&M

Hello M&M,
Let me start off by saying this:
I only but started to use this preventative treatment within the last year and, at that, just three times. Certainly, this can not be long enough duration for the product to have had any chance to be very effective.

Given that, we did make ample usage of the "comfort stations" available to us.
Iíd have to say that the infrequency rate of usage would fall within the entire winter and, at least 2 to 3 month the remainder of the year. (Both attributed to the usage of the comfort stations.)
Like anything else, the more you actually use it, the better itíll work when you need it..
The other thing I did, which in-hind sight, may very well have added to the problem was to empty the holding tanks completely and letting it go dry between the extended period of non-usage. It might well do to leave some fresh, clean water in the tanks between use with this lubricate treatment included.
I imagine that thereís more than a few out there using this very same method to their Ďholding tanks.
I hope Iíve covered the points for you..
One other thing that I must admit to is: In the past, I hadnít being doing was to make use of a water wand to completely flush out any solids that might have dropped to the bottom of the tank.
ciao
53FC
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