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Old 07-30-2002, 03:24 PM   #1
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black-water dump valve...

how difficult is it to replace? (how do you access it, for that matter? have to drop the belly pan, I would imagine...(?))

I suspect a leak, although I'm not certain yet. haven't tested it, but It's been sitting for a week, and I just hooked up water supply to do some stuff yesterday, and when I took the cap off, a bunch of icky-water fell out. not much....maybe a cup or 2, but from its appearance, I'm wondering if there's a little drip. There shouldn't be much in the tank...(residue), as I dumped it the last time it was used. but I'm sure there's probably always a little bit of lingering fluid in there. when I get to it, I'll fill up the black tank, and see what happens when there's a load on the valve.

Maybe I'll be lucky and a good cleaning will be all it needs. I should fill it up and put some of that tank-enzyme stuff in there to soak for a while. previous owner's reported to me that they just left the valve open when hooked up to sewer, which I understand is a very bad practice.
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Old 07-30-2002, 04:10 PM   #2
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I had the same problem and solved it by back flushing the tank. TP gets caught on the knife valve and causes the leak. I have since bought the FlushKing adapter which really cleans the tank and the valve has not leaked since.

http://www.campingworld.com/browse/s...9&skunum=20522
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Old 08-01-2002, 09:18 AM   #3
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Jerry,
Just went to Camping World's site they have no product with the name Flushking. The link doesn't work anymore so I guess they are not carrying that particular product.

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Old 08-01-2002, 10:19 AM   #4
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Sorry Jack, I guess CampingWorld dropped this product. Go to http://www.flushking.com
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Old 08-13-2002, 11:18 AM   #5
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Update

Ok, I filled up the tank, dropped in a dose of enzyme-stuff, and let it sit for a week. When I went out to dump it on Sunday morning, the tank was empty. (!). I put more water in the tank, and could see that it was dripping out the "exhaust" pipe at a pretty good rate. If it was leaking before, it was a very slow leak; now it is a very fast one. After our 2 day camping trip that I mentioned originally, I took it over to the dump station, and when I dumped, everything seemed normal. That is, a whole bunch of liquid came pouring out of the tank through the slinky with the expected "whooshing" sound. so it was holding. Now, I doubt any liquid would stay in there for more than a few minutes.

The added problem: my in-laws were taking the trailer for a week, so there was no time for me to fix this, even if I knew how to access and replace the valve. (which I don't). They are at a full-hookup site, so its not the end of the world. BUT....next sunday, I'm picking it up there, and taking it for our vacation, part of which will be at a state park w/ no hookups. (have to use the blue-tank for both grey and black water, I guess....).

So I searched the forum and found some threads. I tried to back-flush w/ my sewer solution, but it sends a narrow stream up into the tank. I did see some little "chunks" of debris come out, but it wasn't very much. I tried working the valve back and forth over this stream...didn't help. So I tried the "soak" that was mentioned, by putting a couple of gallons in the tank and leaving the cap on the sewer pipe for a couple of hours. I even drove it over 100 miles like this, as I had to haul the trailer to their campsite. When we got there, I closed the valve, took off the cap, and hooked up the hose. after flushing some more water down the toilet, I could hear it dribbling through the sewer hose, so it hasnt' resolved itself.

Any other suggestions on how to resolve this? I'm wondering if the "flush-king" would do anything different than the "sewer solution.
If I have to replace the valve, I guess I'll have to cut an access pannel. (the one AS should have put there to begin with. What is up with that??? they should have provided access to parts that should be expected to need service.....). What is the best tool for doing this?
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Old 08-13-2002, 02:21 PM   #6
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Maybe ...

You might try taking something like a coat hanger wire and see if TP or other debris has been wadded into the end of the slot that the blade slips in. That keeps the blade from closing all the way. This happened to me once.
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Old 08-29-2002, 04:31 PM   #7
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Just dropped my dump valve housing. The knife valve wouldn't close. Drilled out a few rivets and dropped a belly pan to expose it. Then removed all the slotted bolts to drop it. There were 10 of them. 6 outer connect it to the black water tank. 4 inner shorter bolds connect the knife valve to the assembly. Only have to remove the outer 6 to drop the assembly. Could possibly fix it by just removing the knife valve. The bolts were pretty rusted up. (mine is a 1961 22 ft Safari so I expected this) They did brake free. If not I would have cut their heads off. I now have it on the bench. No amount of soaking and poking would have fixed mine.

Once I get my hands on a rebuild kit I should be back in business.
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Old 08-29-2002, 07:37 PM   #8
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Chuck,

I did a write up on rebuilding the waste valves a while back, if you want I'll find it and post it here for you.

Mike
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Old 08-29-2002, 11:13 PM   #9
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Mike,

Please post it for all to see. I think I am going to have to do this soon myself and want to enter into the project with irrational confidence levels. That way when I am done, I have a real sense of satisfaction that "I did it??".

TIA
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Old 08-30-2002, 04:59 AM   #10
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Chuck,
Rebuilding the dump valves is not that difficult once you get to the valves. Rebuild kits are readily available and have good instructions. The problem is getting access to the valves. I have a 93 Excello 1000. To get to mine I cut an access hole(a large one) in the belly skin and then replaced it with a galvanized sheet metal patch with screws( or rivets). Aluminum would be better if you can get it. The tool I used was an air operated die grinder with a thin blade. Mark the area first with a straight edge and cut slowly so that you can see what is behind it before you cut something you don't want to cut. Once you get through you can see where the valves are and adjust the hole size and location. Make the hole large enough to work in just in case you need to change some fittings or get tools up into the cavity. I had to replace some plumbing since I had a leak at one of the other fittings. I think this happened one winter when it froze-there must have been some water collected at that point as the tanks were empty at the time. The valve can be removed for rebuilding. You will probably need to remove the extension handles on the valves. I would suggest rebuilding both valves once you are in the area.
Good Luck
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Old 08-30-2002, 10:12 AM   #11
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mike: definately, repost that article. I didn't find it in my search...must be using the wrong terminology....

James: definately want to create an access panel; there should've been one there in the first place, imho. I suppose maybe AS figures that their market is the more afluent types that wouldn't ever fix anything themselves, so they save a few bucks by not bothering with this sort of thing....who knows...

but I'm wondering if it wouldnt' be easier to just remove the belly pan back there altogether. I might want to change the plumbing around anyway. If you've seen my other recent threads, I have no greay tank, and found that black-water can easily backup into the shower while dumping, so I might want to add a valve on the shower drain to prevent this from happening again.....or retro-fit a grey water tank. I don't know...that might be a tad more ambitious than I'm up for...we'll see....
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Old 09-01-2002, 09:22 PM   #12
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OOPs started a new thread instad of replyong, reposted here.

Thetford valve rebuild
I just finished rebuilding both valves on my 75 Argosy rear bath and thought I'd share the experience.


Tools needed:


Drill with 1/8" bit (for drilling out any rivets that need to be removed
#2 Phillips screwdriver
Stubby #2 Phillips screwdriver
#3 or #4 Phillips screwdriver.
medium common screwdriver
pliers
Pop rivets and tool


Parts needed
2 Thetford valve repair kits


1. The first step is gaining access to the valves, in my case I had to drop the belly pan for about three feet forward starting at the trunk.


2. Next, starting with the gray water valve loosen the band clamp on the out let of the gray tank. This allows the plastic pipe that goes into the tank to rotate which you'll need to do later.


3. Disconnect the pull rod handle or extension from the pull rod. Remove all the small screws in the body of the valve except the two where the pull rod goes in.


4. At this point the valve will separate into two halves. If your black water valve is screwed into the black tank and the pipes join with a small rubber slip connection, stop on this valve and proceed to the black valve.


********** WARNING *****************
THE BLACK WATER SYSTEM CONTAINS THINGS REALLY, REALLY BAD TO YOUR HEALTH.
Rinse the black tank several time and use some soap to help loosen the bad stuff from the tank. I used a cup of bleach and filled the tank with hot water and let it set for a couple of hours. Drain the tank.


5. Disconnect the pull rod handle or extension from the pull rod. Remove the 4 large screws holding the valve to the bottom of the tank and loosen the band clamps on the rubber slip joint. Working from the uphill side, slide the valve and waste line from the tank and remove from the trailer.


6. Remove all the small screws except the two by the pull rod. separate the valve halves and clean with a strong bleach water solution.


7. Remove and discard all rubber pieces. Install new rubber parts and reassemble.


8. Reinstall the black valve reversing the instructions above.


9. Remove old rubber parts from the gray valve and install new rubber parts.


10. Reassemble the gray valve and install both pull rod extensions.


11. Tighten all the clamp loosened and the check them again.


12. Fill both waste tanks with clear water and check for leaks, if every thing worked there are no leaks.


13. Raise the Belly pan back into place and rivet it up.



As an addendum to my note on rebuilding the valves I would like to add the following step:


NOTE: It is important to remove _all_ rags, plastic bags or other items placed in the drain line to prevent critters from entering prior to closing everything up... Don't ask how I know. Rebuild valve not twice, but three times because water did not flow out, finally I remembered the Wally World bag with the rag inside that we had slid into the waste line.


Major embarrassment.


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