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Old 03-31-2015, 09:43 PM   #1
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1970 27' Overlander
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New vintage Airstream owner - Black Tank questions

Hi Guys!

I'm the happy new owner of a 1970 Airstream Overlander and like with all new things, I've got questions! But I'll start off with just one. I'm not sure that the black tank has been emptied in quite some time...I only surmise this is the case, because there is water coming up from the shower drain. Not a lot of water, but it's there and every now and then I see a larvae crawling around. Anyways, sorry if I've grossed anyone out already, but I'm wondering what my options are! Oh and one important detail - I am renovating the trailer on some countryside property that I own, but that means two things - one, I don't have an electrical hookup yet, and two, no plumbing hookup.

Thanks for any and all suggestions!!

Andre
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Old 03-31-2015, 09:48 PM   #2
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1970 has no Gray water tank. The grey water is drained into the main dump . When the dump is closed and the cap is in place there is no where for the water to go but up....thru the shower floor. If you open the cap it will drain and your problem solve itself. A cap with a hose connection is made so you can hook a hose up and have a gray water drain away from the Airstream.
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Old 03-31-2015, 10:17 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by aboudre1 View Post
I don't have an electrical hookup yet, and two, no plumbing hookup.

Thanks for any and all suggestions!!

Andre
André, first, welcome to Airforums! You have picked a very popular model in the vintage series, and I am sure you will find lots of enjoyment in using it. Can you post a few photos of it? It seems we live an breath through photos.

Assuming you plan on putting the trailer in your driveway in order to do work on it, I would just peek in and ask the good people at the local zoning office to see what restrictions they may (make that 'wil!l)'have on parking your RV at your home. This seems to vary wildly, but it's much nicer if you can do work on it at home. When you are preparing to leave on a trip, lots of time travelling saved, for example.

Also, if it is possible, putting a simple connection on your sanitary cleanout pipe so that the waste tank can be emptied while you are there seems to be a fairly low-cost investment and could be very handy too. Apparently, homes in many communities in the US have an pipe on the outside of the house for this purpose that can give you what you want. That and a simple garden hose and you're ready to clean up lots of things around your trailer.

Good luck and keep us informed!
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Old 04-01-2015, 12:47 AM   #4
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Black tank

Andre', Before you drain that tank do yourself a favor. They make a Ridex product now for RV's that can safely be used in your blackwater tank to eat waste deposits that may be clogging up your black tank and causing it to overfill faster than normal. That added to the fact that the graywater from your sinks and shower also help to over fill the blackwater tank can easily result in the backup of waste water into your shower thru the drain. Using the Ridex for RV's will help you to get a cleaned out tank faster and allow you to flush the shower and all sink drains better once that issue is resolved. Place it into the black tank by normal flushing of the amount recommended on the package down the toilet the drive the trailer around for a chance to agitate the contents of the tank and spend up the action of the Ridex. Most people will shy away from doing this but in the old days a gopher hole was dug and the trailer parked above it to dispose of all waste water and solids. So since you are on your own property anyway dig yourself a pit and hook up a sewer slinky hose from your waste connection drain and route it downhill to the pit. This will insure that all waste solid and liquid are deposited into the pit. Then flush entire system with clean solution of water with 5 (gals) parts water to 1(gal) part bleach to disinfect all plumbing drains and black tank. Flushing after 1/2 hour with clean water poured down all sink/shower and toilet drains. Then bury the contents of the pit with the dirt you removed from it. Nature will break down the buried waste contents of the pit and safely turn it to fertilizer in a short time. Ed
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Old 04-01-2015, 08:25 AM   #5
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Open the valve in the toilet. You should be able to see the bottom of the tank with a flashlight. That will tell you if anything is in the tank.
Your trailer has no grey water tank. Put a bucket under the sewer outlet and catch the water. There won't be but a couple of gallons. Make sure the black water dump valve is closed.


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Old 04-01-2015, 12:38 PM   #6
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Another Blackwater Tank cleaner popular with RVers is a product called "Rv Digest It"

On Amazon here:

Amazon.com - Unique Natural Products RV Digest-It Holding Tank Cleaner, 128-Ounce - Chemical Drain Openers

With regular treatments only a few ounces is needed... but for a tank like yours that has not been cleaned in a long time... use a quart...

Well recommended by Amazon RV users... It works for me...
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Old 04-01-2015, 09:31 PM   #7
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1970 27' Overlander
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[QUOTE=BIGED52;1601166]Andre', Before you drain that tank do yourself a favor. They make a Ridex product now for RV's that can safely be used in your blackwater tank to eat waste deposits that may be clogging up your black tank and causing it to overfill faster than normal.

Thanks for all of the advice guys! I'm headed out to work on it this weekend and will grab a flashlight to see if we're full. I'll be sure to grab some Ridex also, that's a great idea Biged52. If it's full, I think a gopher hole will have to do for now...although I'm reticent to dump the waste water because there are so many drinking wells in the area. Anyways, that will be a worse case scenario solution.
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Old 04-01-2015, 09:34 PM   #8
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1970 27' Overlander
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[QUOTE=Aage;1601124]André, first, welcome to Airforums! You have picked a very popular model in the vintage series, and I am sure you will find lots of enjoyment in using it. Can you post a few photos of it? It seems we live an breath through photos.

Hi there! I've posted photos on the "Full Timer" forum, under the title "Fulltiming Vintage - Moving to Austin." I hope you enjoy and sorry I couldn't post more...it would only allow me to submit four, but more to come as the renovation process will surely be eventful.

All the best,

Andre
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