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Old 05-04-2020, 06:34 PM   #1
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Tips for AI bathroom facilities

We have never pooped or showered in our 2015 AI. We always used campground facilities.
I just retired (this past Friday) and we are looking forward to travel and experiencing boon docking. Also, with the virus situation we need to learn to use our AI facilities. Please share any tips you have on using the van toilet for solid waste as well as the shower. Thanks so much!
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Old 05-04-2020, 06:58 PM   #2
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Donít flush toilet paper, instead get some of those small scented trash bags and hang one handy to the toilet.

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Old 05-04-2020, 07:30 PM   #3
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I never have any problem using appropriate toilet paper in reasonable amounts.

Other than that. Put a little water in after each time you dump and add a splash of chemicals. I use the blue stuff. You don't need a lot in such a small tank.

The big rule is to never put anything in the toilet that you have not swallowed.

Stand on the pedal for a time each time before you dump. The more liquid in the tank, the better.

I like to dump at arrival instead of when leaving. That way, everything sloshes about and is liquified. Less than fifteen gallons isn't much to cart from park to park.

I use the tank flush about every third dump. You can tell when you need to flush the tank when the level sensor doesn't immediately go down to empty after a dump.

Pull the hose almost full out each time. I have made a mark near the end of the hose that keeps me from pulling it too far out and crimping the hose. I pick up the hose near the AI each time and walk it toward the sewer so that the hose empties out.
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Old 05-05-2020, 04:47 AM   #4
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Consider removing the soap dispenser from the shower. We added a small dispenser over the sink for hand soap and a command shower caddy on the wall above the toilet.

Consider putting some kind of mat on the floor. The teak ones are really nice. We get by with the rubber drainage tiles used on pool decks and in pool showers. Cut to fit.

Enjoy your travels!
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Old 05-05-2020, 07:27 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondie2015 View Post
We have never pooped or showered in our 2015 AI. We always used campground facilities.
I just retired (this past Friday) and we are looking forward to travel and experiencing boon docking. Also, with the virus situation we need to learn to use our AI facilities. Please share any tips you have on using the van toilet for solid waste as well as the shower. Thanks so much!
A tutorial:



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Old 05-05-2020, 07:47 AM   #6
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Toilet paper is not a problem if you use Happy Camper Natural. We use the thick soft strong multiply stuff without any issue. Happy Camper digests plant cellulose (paper) and it reacts with the smelly gas so no rotten egg smell. It is by far the best additive while your tank is in use in my opinion. then use the enzyme cleaner with a small amount of water while traveling to metabolize the sludge and organics that might otherwise build up.

Squeegee and towel dry the shower after each use. Keeps it clean and reduces humidity.
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Old 05-05-2020, 07:57 AM   #7
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The additive product called Odorlos is rumored to be the best at controlling odors. I myself don't like any of the ones I've tried to date.

As you go forward, keep in mind that the cheap plastic Thetford toilet models installed in Airstream Interstates often have interstitial leaks that lead to odor problems. You can read about that via ClassBWarned's website or mine, where I describe replacing the Thetford with a Dometic.
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Old 05-05-2020, 07:59 AM   #8
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Toilet paper is not a problem if you use Happy Camper Natural. We use the thick soft strong multiply stuff without any issue.
Unfortunately, this advice is based on a trailer with a 3" dump hose, not an Interstate with a macerator. Believe me, you can get into serious trouble with the multi-ply stuff. I had trailers for 30 years before I had an Interstate. You can get away with a lot in a trailer if you add enough liquid.

I tried a multi-ply brand in the Interstate once that had been shown to dissolve well in tests and I ended up with a clog that took some doing to solve. There is not enough "head" in the small, flattish tank to get heavy TP down to the macerator and the macerator is not designed to chew up wads of paper.
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Old 05-05-2020, 09:23 AM   #9
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Have not had issues with using TP, recommend Scott's RV TP. Empty dish washing water to black tank. Seems like the extra fluid with Dawn offers extra cleaning.
Travel with full tank to next stop, then dump. Gets everything clean.
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Old 05-05-2020, 09:47 AM   #10
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I think you'll be pleasantly surprised how convenient it is to use your own wetbath to its' fullest extent.

We started out tentative using ours. But gradually got confortable with how capable it is to basically use like your home toilet and shower. If using campground hookups. it's a breeze. If boon docking, it's still a breeze. You just have to fill your fresh water and dump your black tank every day or two.

I'm too tall to stand, so I sit for my showers. I learned after the first time to use a non-skid cloth between my bottom and the toilet seat lid. It's gets surprisingly slippery. I forgot to mention this to my wife, who found out on her own.

My only caution would be to "practice" once in your driveway since you need to determine everything works properly.
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Old 05-05-2020, 09:50 AM   #11
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High recommend Happy Camper Natural

We are full time RVers in a 98 AS Land Yacht Motorhome. We have used all sorts of natural and not so natural products. Happy Camper is the winner far and beyond any other product especially for reduction of smell. You do have add slightly more in the heat. Follow the instructions and you'll be fine. We are waiting out C19 here in Tucson. We usually purchase through Amazon.
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Old 05-05-2020, 09:59 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Pahaska View Post
Unfortunately, this advice is based on a trailer with a 3" dump hose, not an Interstate with a macerator. Believe me, you can get into serious trouble with the multi-ply stuff. I had trailers for 30 years before I had an Interstate. You can get away with a lot in a trailer if you add enough liquid.

I tried a multi-ply brand in the Interstate once that had been shown to dissolve well in tests and I ended up with a clog that took some doing to solve. There is not enough "head" in the small, flattish tank to get heavy TP down to the macerator and the macerator is not designed to chew up wads of paper.
My Avenue has a macerator toilet. Steel blades like a blender rather than rubber like in the dump macerator so I don't have that problem. Nothing gets into the black tank that isn't pulverised.

We don't put "wet" (#1) toilet paper in there just as a precaution to reduce the chance that something were to get caught in the slide seal at the bottom of the bowl. But, you gotta use enough for #2 to get the job done. It takes more water before & after (naturally), but will handle anything our home toilet will.

ps. - my dump macerator has a fresh water bypass tube so that when on full hook-ups I can pull my gray tank valve for continous drainage. Is that a feature on Interstates?
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Old 05-05-2020, 10:59 AM   #13
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In my ps- (above), I meant gray water bypass.
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Old 05-05-2020, 01:20 PM   #14
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RV toilet paper is a bummer. 30+ years ago I did a simple test: two glasses of water. Put RV toilet paper in one (just a couple of squares) and our home toilet paper in the other. They both started breaking down in short order. We’ve never had a problem.

Another tip: only empty your black tank when it is full or close to it. Gravity is a good thing and will be a virtual river through your hose instead of a trickle.
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Old 05-05-2020, 01:33 PM   #15
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OP was asking about bathroom use in an Interstate. As the former owner of six travel trailers over the years, believe me that the Interstate is a different beast. There are no "rivers through hoses." There is a macerator and a long 1" hose with a nozzle on the end.

It doesn't have to be RV TP. We buy the cheapest one-ply in the grocery store and it works quite well.

By the way, for the OP, make sure you don't forget to open the nozzle at the sewer end before you hit the macerator switch. I was distracted once and forgot to open the nozzle. I ended up getting sprayed through pinholes in the dump hose.
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Old 05-05-2020, 02:05 PM   #16
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Unfortunately, this advice is based on a trailer with a 3" dump hose, not an Interstate with a macerator. Believe me, you can get into serious trouble with the multi-ply stuff. I had trailers for 30 years before I had an Interstate. You can get away with a lot in a trailer if you add enough liquid.

I tried a multi-ply brand in the Interstate once that had been shown to dissolve well in tests and I ended up with a clog that took some doing to solve. There is not enough "head" in the small, flattish tank to get heavy TP down to the macerator and the macerator is not designed to chew up wads of paper.
I use a sewer solution clear plastic jet macerator and watch it drain each time while packing up. With Happy Camper I never see any intact clumps of paper enter the pump. It truly is digested. I have forgotten to add Happy Camper a couple times and did have minor issues with clumps getting through the pump outlet and small 1 in tubing though the added jet water does help and the large 3 inch pipe from the tank definitely avoids the issue you mention. Perhaps as you say, my experience may not translate in every case. Reader discretion advised!
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Old 05-05-2020, 02:31 PM   #17
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Pardon the Ick Factor of what I'm about to say.

Should you find yourself in a situation where due to tank capacity, or other factors, you would just rather not do the deuce, here is a work-around.

Have the toilet as empty of water as possible. Line it with a trash bag, and then a toddler diaper. Do what you need to do. Dispose of contents in the trash.

I am not trying to get into the " you have a toilet, so use it" debate. I offer this as an alternative for times where it may be of use.
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Old 05-05-2020, 03:06 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pahaska View Post
OP was asking about bathroom use in an Interstate. As the former owner of six travel trailers over the years, believe me that the Interstate is a different beast. There are no "rivers through hoses." There is a macerator and a long 1" hose with a nozzle on the end.

It doesn't have to be RV TP. We buy the cheapest one-ply in the grocery store and it works quite well.

By the way, for the OP, make sure you don't forget to open the nozzle at the sewer end before you hit the macerator switch. I was distracted once and forgot to open the nozzle. I ended up getting sprayed through pinholes in the dump hose.
John offers good counsel. The NCV3 AIs are even different from mine, the T1N AI. Mine has a combined black/gray tank with a standard gravity dump and a solenoid valve rather than the standard manual pull valve.

Just from reading here this past year, the NCV3 units with the macerator pump are so significantly different that those of us with standard gravity dump units really don't even possess the vocabularly with which to discuss the newer units' systems.
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Old 05-08-2020, 09:44 AM   #19
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Plenty of tips for the toilet and I have nothing to add. For the shower the design is poor. Need to have front down for the water on the floor to get to the drain but if the front is down the water will pool behind the toilet on the toilet ledge. And if the front is down too much it will run out (through the toilet flush water hole in the wall) and get the floor wet. Grr. So least-bad alternative is to have the front up a bit to drain the toilet ledge and push the floor water to the drain. Agree about removing the soap dispenser. Even if one found it handy to have, you would have to empty it every winter. We don't have a teak floor mat, and could never figure why we would want one.
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Old 05-08-2020, 12:33 PM   #20
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I have a small squeegee in a holder on the wood wall, behind the curtain. I use it to push water toward the drain and to get drops off the roadside wall.

I pull the curtain over the commode as far as it will go. That helps in drying out. I'm considering some sort of roll-up curtain on the forward wall that would pudd down over the commode and maybe attach with snaps to the ledge in front of the commode. I don't shower sitting down, and this would contain a lot of the water that ends up behind the commode.
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