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Old 10-12-2014, 10:42 AM   #1
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Washing out the black tank

We just brought home a new 2014 international 25fb. We stopped at a campground overnight. When I went to flush out the black tank with the external hose connection, more water came out of the belly pan than the black tank. Is there an easy way to check the connection of the hose to the black tank? Probably should have tried this at the dealer, but didn't think it would be an issue. Thanks for your input, Mike
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Old 10-12-2014, 10:49 AM   #2
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You have a broken line. I'd advise taking it back to the dealer for warranty repair.
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Old 10-12-2014, 11:47 AM   #3
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It may be the vacuum breaker located just inside the AS behind the sewer sprayer connection. These are notorious for breaking. You might want to open the door under the wardrobe (the panel with the round heater vent is actually a hinged door) and see if the floor is wet). You'll still need to get it fixed obviously but at least you might determine what is leaking.

I'm not saying you should do this but....... It looks like these aren't hard to replace. I know for me it would easier to fix myself than go to the hassle of taking my AS in for service.

If you do a search you'll find many posts about this issue.


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Old 10-12-2014, 11:51 AM   #4
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I may have called it the wrong thing but this is what I was talking aboutClick image for larger version

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Old 10-12-2014, 11:56 AM   #5
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That feature is a complete waste of time and money. Even with it being a new trailer I would just remove it and seal the line coming up from the tank.

If you are concerned about flushing the black tank try this. Drain the black tank. While lifting the hose, at the connection to from a trap, open the gray tank and count to 10, drop the hose and close the gray tank. This will put considerable more water into the black tank than the sprayer will. Once the water gas stopped draining from the black tank close that valve an open the gray.
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Old 10-12-2014, 02:29 PM   #6
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Thanks. Will go and try to find what to fix. The closest dealer is a few hours away so fixing myself is the best solution. Not to fond of the valve setup for dumping on the the new trailer. No labels to know which handle goes to which tank. I guess things are more compact this way, less chance of getting knocked off. Gotta get used to it now though. Thanks again, Mike
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Old 10-12-2014, 02:59 PM   #7
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You have to figure out which is witch or you will have dirty hose to deal with.

The position of the toilet should tell you which is which, more than likely the back one. If you want a test run a few gallows of water into the gray tank. hook up to dump. You should only hear flow from the gray tank. note for the future.
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Old 10-12-2014, 03:14 PM   #8
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Howie, thanks. I took my flashlight and looked past the metal guard and could see the black and gray valves. The handles are both black. Will definately lable them for future reference. I found the hidden compartment to the area mentioned above. The floor was not wet so I am thinking the leak must be at the connection to the black tank. I'll probably just use the gray tank to flush or run a hose in to the toilet and run water down from there until I can get it back to OH to be fixed. Thinking I am going to start a list of things that need to be fixed and make a roadtrip next fall. Thanks again
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Old 10-12-2014, 03:22 PM   #9
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I second Landrum on this, the vacuum breaker on the black tank flush is probably broken since it is the weak link on this system. It's an easy fix to do if you are moderately handy. Do check the floor under your wardrobe to see if it is wet after you run the black tank flush, if it is not wet, then the leak is probably someplace else. Some people replace the vacuum breaker with a metal one, others just replace it with a piece of straight pipe and use a back flow preventer on their hose.

I find the black tank flush to be very useful to getting <nearly> all of the solids out of the tank and would not want to live without it.
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Old 10-12-2014, 03:31 PM   #10
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IF you have black water leaking into the belly pan that's not a do-it-yourself job. At least not for me if I have a warranty to cover it. Grey water and fresh water I would tackle but black water, not for me. Now, if I had no warranty I gotta do what I gotta do. If you use one of those clear elbows on your discharge line you can quickly determine which handle is black or grey. It also is helpful to be sure you're getting a good flush. Some of us are entertained by simple things.
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Old 10-12-2014, 04:46 PM   #11
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Our "black tank washout" was also broken... it was a 1999 and had been broken for a while. We had it repaired by a local 'rv' guy while he was helping with some other tasks. He just drilled another hole in the tank next to where the old one was broken off and had been epoxied shut... works fine.

We like it because we can 'add' water quickly to the black tank after a flush... I let it run about 2 minutes, then while still running, open the black tank valve a second time.. lots more flushable contents slide out... I do that twice if I will be stowing the AS. Otherwise I add another '45-60 seconds of water run time then add the Toilet packets.

If you get enough in the 'black tank' I will wager you will get some 'leakage' ... not good in your NEW AS....
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Old 10-12-2014, 05:25 PM   #12
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I'm sure that no "black" water was leaking into the belly pan. Just water from the hose connection. So it's gotta be the hose connection to the top of the tank if the floor was dry. Hopefully. I think I'll make some new handles with a B and a G engraved on them just to be sure. Thanks again. Mike
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Old 10-12-2014, 05:53 PM   #13
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Mike.. new handles? You might have a 'cottage industry' there... you can label one 'poop' and the other 'soup'...
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Old 10-12-2014, 06:51 PM   #14
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Couldn't tell if you figured it out, but the handle toward the front of the AS is the black tank. Grey tank is closer to the wheels.


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Old 10-12-2014, 07:28 PM   #15
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Also, you should be able to see the pipes leading the dump valves on that model ... the 2" pipe goes to the grey water holding tank ...the 3" pipe goes to the black water holding tank.

By the way, knowing that that flush inlet is a weak point in the system, if the flush hose set up makes it doable, I often use a water pressure-reducer on the hose to help prevent excess pressure blowing it out.
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Old 10-12-2014, 09:42 PM   #16
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With the new setup, all of the pvc pipes going and coming from the valves is concealed by a sheetmetal cover with pullrods coming out of the valves. The only way to see whats what, is to get down and try to see throught the oversize holes the pullrods go through. Also, there is a pipe from the valves about 1 ft. long the hose attaches to. Problem is you close the valves and remove the hose there seems to be "residue" because there isn't enough slope in the pipe. I realize the pipe can't drag the ground, but sometimes simpler is better. Most times.
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Old 10-12-2014, 10:00 PM   #17
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I meant to ask earlier......where exactly does the water come out of the belly pan? As you said both black and grey tanks and their piping is covered with the sheet mtl. I would think if the black flush sprayer was leaking at the tank connection the water would end up in the sheet mtl box??


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Old 10-12-2014, 10:55 PM   #18
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Had this issue on my preowned 2008 Classic 25fb. The first time I used the black tank flush water came out of the bottom from beneath the shower location. My black tank back flow prevent valve was behind the shower not supported by any brackets. I doubt the previous owner even used it since the trailer looked hardly used. I suspect the movement of the trailer caused the valve to bounce between the shower wall and the shell. The valve is hard clear brittle plastic. I replaced the valve with a grey RV pipe elbow that had matching treads from an RV parts store. I used plumbers tape on the threads. It's been trouble free since. There is only one supplier for this valve. I think a metal valve would be too heavy unless your flush lines have support brackets.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f444...ml#post1288964

I use the black flush all the time. The sensor can get confused if too much junk builds up in the tank. When I go to a campground with just water and electricity I fill the black tank almost full before I head to the dump station. I often put detergent in the black tank so it sloshes around and makes the tank wall slick. I used the black flush to calibrate the tank a couple of weeks ago.

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Old 10-12-2014, 11:14 PM   #19
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The water was coming out of the sheet metal box. I haven't crawled all the way under the trailer yet, but I would think there is a drain hole in the sheet metal for that purpose. I see you have a 2014 international also. Yours different from what I am describing? Just curious
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Old 10-13-2014, 11:37 AM   #20
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We have a winner. Mr. Landrum was correct. The valve was broken. Hooked the hose up to it and turned it on low. Had a gusher. Sad part is, after looking around, someone with dirty hands had been there before. Panel had been removed. So someone at Airstream knew and passed it along to the dealer, or the dealer passed it along to me. Either way, I will fix it. Thanks for all of the help. Mike
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