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Old 09-05-2008, 09:57 AM   #1
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Grey water used for Toilet

Ok, I tried a search to no avail.. This must have been covered somewhere.. If you know of the tread let me know.

I am putting a grey tank in my 68', what I thought was to run a line from the grey tank with a pump to the toilet.. I hate using fresh water to flush with, seems such a waste... I would have a switch for the pump and a shut of for the fresh water. has this been done.... I think I would have to be careful of contaminating the fresh water, this is my only concern.. Don't really want to put in a back flow valve as it won't drain in the winter.. I could run 2 separate lines? Pressure might stop the water from going back? maybe not....

Any ideas...
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Old 09-05-2008, 10:08 AM   #2
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I'm not sure how they are plumbed, but we are starting to see this application more and more in new home construction. One thing that you might want to consider is a filter of some sort between the grey tank and toilet. I only suggest this, because I think that the food scraps that can get drained from the kitchen sink, as well as hair from the bathroom sink, might be too coarse for some of the workings of the toilet rinse system and gum it up.
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Old 09-05-2008, 10:23 AM   #3
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There are many different shades of grey water. Grey water also comes with a variety of odors depending on what is in the tank and how long it has been there. It would not be the most inviting thing sitting in the open inside your trailer. I would estimate the amount of fresh water that we put into the black tank to be around a gallon a day (2 people). I would just carry some extra water.
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Old 09-05-2008, 10:41 AM   #4
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yes, filter is a must, We do a lot of dry camping and i hate to waste my fresh water and more is not always available...
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Old 09-05-2008, 11:04 AM   #5
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In case you have not experienced it yet but gray water often smells worst than black water. Any filter you use will have to address odor more than any thing else.

If you do install a pump consider installing at least one and maybe 2 small pressure tank, Shure makes one about the size of a softball, between the pump and the toilet. This will reduce short cycling of the pump due to the small draw.
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Old 09-05-2008, 11:24 AM   #6
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Ok, I tried a search to no avail.. This must have been covered somewhere.. If you know of the tread let me know.

I am putting a grey tank in my 68', what I thought was to run a line from the grey tank with a pump to the toilet.. I hate using fresh water to flush with, seems such a waste... I would have a switch for the pump and a shut of for the fresh water. has this been done.... I think I would have to be careful of contaminating the fresh water, this is my only concern.. Don't really want to put in a back flow valve as it won't drain in the winter.. I could run 2 separate lines? Pressure might stop the water from going back? maybe not....

Any ideas...
Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a "gray water bacteria check valve".

Keep in mind, bacteria travels in every direction. Whatever plumbing or hoses you may use to transfer the gray water to the black water tank, it will be loaded with bacteria.

That bacteria will be in every source you have, that provides gray water.

Not a good idea.

Super health hazard.

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Old 09-05-2008, 12:21 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by purman View Post
Ok, I tried a search to no avail.. This must have been covered somewhere.. If you know of the tread let me know.

I am putting a grey tank in my 68', what I thought was to run a line from the grey tank with a pump to the toilet.. I hate using fresh water to flush with, seems such a waste... I would have a switch for the pump and a shut of for the fresh water. has this been done.... I think I would have to be careful of contaminating the fresh water, this is my only concern.. Don't really want to put in a back flow valve as it won't drain in the winter.. I could run 2 separate lines? Pressure might stop the water from going back? maybe not....

Any ideas...
Connecting a pressurized gray water line to the fresh water line is a no-no . You could , if something goes wrong , fill your fresh water line with gray water. You would need some sort of air break between the two.
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Old 09-05-2008, 12:23 PM   #8
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Sounding like this is a bad Idea... Thats why I asked the question.....

Guess I just bring an extra 5 gal or so of fresh water....
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Old 09-05-2008, 12:26 PM   #9
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Seems like a lot of engineering when in most campgrounds there are some sort of facilities be it rustic or modern.

In addition, most campgrounds have water of some sort, be it a hand pump or more modern hookups. I would far rather have a gallon or two jug in the head to use to flush than re-engineer my Airstream.

I would shy away from using the grey tank as has been pointed out, it's no picnic either for the water savings.
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Old 09-05-2008, 12:39 PM   #10
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Humm. I suspect that I could rig something similar with our vintage rig,which has only a black tank. Only a couple of things we're going to have to remember to pack: A couple of really tight-fitting clothes pins for our noses.




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Old 09-05-2008, 01:01 PM   #11
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your idea might work if the toilet was not fed from the potable water in any way. i'd think that if you filtered the grey tank water and pumped it to the toilet, you might have a setup that would work.

hooking the two systems together would a very bad thing and probably would not meet codes. even a lawn sprinkler system requires a check valve.
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Old 09-05-2008, 01:08 PM   #12
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Codes?????? We don't even have building codes where i live... Scares me, seen builders do some really dumb things..

I think I will just pass on the idea....
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Old 09-05-2008, 01:24 PM   #13
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Codes?????? We don't even have building codes where i live...
If you don't have a local Code, you'd be governed by the latest edition of the National Building Code, which outlines the minimum standards for construction.
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Old 09-05-2008, 01:29 PM   #14
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The idea is OK, but the execution plan stinks (literally). As Andy and others have pointed out, you absolutely don't want your waste and fresh water systems comingled. If you really want to do this, use a pick-up that floats in the grey tank to avoid the solids and run it to a separate faucet that you can fill a bucket from in the bathroom and use that to flush the toilet. Probably penny wise and pound foolish all in all.
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