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Old 05-11-2007, 01:46 AM   #1
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Do we really need a gray water tank?

Our 1969 Overlander has no gray water tank. Our gray water drains through the black water tank. Our work schedule hasnít allowed us to do much camping since owning the trailer and none of the campgrounds we stayed at had any rules about a separate gray water tank. It looks like we may finally have time to do some traveling and camping this year, so do I need to do some pre-planning to find campgrounds that prohibit trailers with no gray water tank?
I know that portable totes are available for trailers which have no gray water tank, but Iím not clear on why they are needed. Our home doesnít have a separate gray water sewage system. Do some campgrounds have separate septic systems for black and gray water? Donít people who have the totes usually just dump them in the campground dump station? There is probably a clear answer to my question but I havenít found it and we donít want to invest in installing a gray water tank unless it is truly needed.
Thanks in advance for any info.

Lori
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Old 05-11-2007, 02:01 AM   #2
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Your grey water will accumulate very rapidly. If boon docking for 2 or even 3 days you may have enough black tank space but I would have a blue tank anyway. Depending on the availability of a dump station you probably won't need much more than a 15 gallon. At 8 lbs a gallon that tank will get heavy to tote even with it's wheels.
Neil and Lynn.
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Old 05-11-2007, 02:32 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anholman
Your grey water will accumulate very rapidly. If boon docking for 2 or even 3 days you may have enough black tank space but I would have a blue tank anyway. Depending on the availability of a dump station you probably won't need much more than a 15 gallon. At 8 lbs a gallon that tank will get heavy to tote even with it's wheels.
Neil and Lynn.
Thank you for the reply. So is the lack of a gray water tank ok in full hook-up campgrounds? We don't plan to do any boondocking.
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Old 05-11-2007, 04:09 AM   #4
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When renovating our '73 Sovereign, I contemplated adding a gray tank, but with a large family, realized it would fill rapidly and require daily emptying. A portable blue tank seemed to make more sense.

Needless to say, we prefer full hook-up campgrounds.
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Old 05-11-2007, 06:57 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PizzaChop
When renovating our '73 Sovereign, I contemplated adding a gray tank, but with a large family, realized it would fill rapidly and require daily emptying. A portable blue tank seemed to make more sense.

Needless to say, we prefer full hook-up campgrounds.
I just went camping with full hookups and followed a practice that was once described: hookup, but close the valves. Then each day, I (1.) dumped the black then (2.) closed the valve, then (3.) dumped part of the grey then (4.) closed the valve, then opened the (5.) black valve then the (6.) grey again then (7.) closed all valves. Comments, anyone?

In my '61, I had no grey tank, and full hookups were preferred. I had my blue tank when needed though (15 gallon with wheels and ability to "tow" with truck).
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Old 05-11-2007, 07:14 AM   #6
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I boondock more than camp at site with hookups. Without a grey tank, I couldn't have stayed on location for a week.

I do take some precautions when I boondock. I bring a 5 gal Coleman water jug that can collapse and store easily. With that, I can get water from well pumps or treat water from lakes and place it outside and we wash hands and things like that outdoors. The reason I do that though is to conserve my fresh water supply, but if I had no grey tank, that would also help reduce.

Problem is that if you don't have seperate tanks, when you empty, you get both black and grey wastewater. It can be harder to dispose of that, particularly if you boondock where most services are not availible.

So to answer you question, if you boondock where services are limited, yes, having a grey and black tank can have advantages over single tank systems. If you don't spend a lot of time boondocking and stay in campgrounds primarily with hookups and dump services if there is no sewer hook at the campsite, then it's less of an issue the way I see it.
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Old 05-11-2007, 08:19 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by live2dive
Our 1969 Overlander has no gray water tank. Our gray water drains through the black water tank.
On my 73 the grey water does not drain though the black water tank. Both the black water tank and the grey water drain into a common main drain with a seperate valve to discharge the black water tank. I thought this was how all systems of this era operate and would like to know if I have it wrong.

I usually just let the grey water drain directly on the ground! The only place that I have found this prohibited is in National Parks which is when I let the grey water drain into a seperate container.
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Old 05-11-2007, 09:25 AM   #8
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I have been to at least three rallies over the past year that had limited electric and water, but allowed campers to dump greywater directly on the ground. We're very conservative with our water anyway, and it helped extend our stay without having to hook up and dump the tanks. That alone, is worth it to me.
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Old 05-11-2007, 09:29 AM   #9
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Old 05-11-2007, 09:42 AM   #10
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Keep the black tank dump valve closed to keep the solids as 'liquid' as possible even when hooked to a sewer. Watch the level and dump when the tank is almost full. Gotta keep that stuff movin' when it is time.

Neil and Lynn
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Old 05-11-2007, 09:52 AM   #11
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I also don't have a grey tank, so when I hook-up, I'm draining my grey and letting the black tank fill. Then I close my grey tank valve (which we added) and dump the black, then run grey and water into the B/T to flush. No need for grey there.

Without hook-ups, we use a 10 g blue-boy- easy to manuever. (I also have 5- 5 g containers a friend gave me- in case I need extra)
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