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Old 04-17-2006, 06:34 PM   #1
4 Rivet Member
1979 31' Excella 500
Detroit Area , Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 498
Images: 43
Black water tank leak $$$$

Anybody every have one of these repaired replaced at a dealer? It is a rear bath 31' AS. What did it cost if it was just a leaky dump valve? What did it cost for a complete tank/valve replacement?
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Old 04-17-2006, 06:36 PM   #2
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1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
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Posts: 21,253
If you still have the Thetford valves, they can be removed and repaired or rebuilt for not a lot of money.
If they are Valterra valves, you will have to take more stuff apart and replace the valves, and it is more trouble, and time. If you are having an RV place perform the repairs, time is money-their time, and your money.
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Old 04-17-2006, 07:30 PM   #3
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1979 31' Excella 500
Detroit Area , Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2004
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Images: 43
They are Thetford valves. I'm afraid to drop the pan in back as I'm afraid the bolts will shear off from rust, etc.
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Old 04-22-2006, 10:32 AM   #4
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1979 31' Excella 500
1975 28' Argosy 28
Rutledge , Georgia
Join Date: Apr 2005
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Hi, Wacnstac,

Hmm... is your discharge outlet in the back of the trailer? Okay, forgive my ignorance, but do the rear-restroom models lose the advantage of having the tanks between the axles?

My '79 has the tanks under the hallway, and the outlet is just behind the streetside rear wheel. It's a pain in the keyster to get to, too.

1975 Argosy 28 "Argosy"
1979 Excella 500 31 "Betsy"
1992 Lincoln Mk 7 LSC
2003 Dodge 2500 Cummins "TowHog"
"Lucy Loosehair" the cat - Airstream mascot
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Old 04-22-2006, 10:47 AM   #5
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1984 29' Sovereign
Savannah , Missouri
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Unhappy Oh..

Off the top of my head..
Black water tanks usually run in the 400$ range. Check out
To drop the tank and re-intall the new fixtures, a new tank box holder (the old one is gonna be rusted out, most likely) etc. Also, price for extra parts determine at the time..You'd also need to figure labor cost: at 80$ to 95$ per hour. Sorry, this is the going rate just about everywhere these days~~
Not cheap my friend..
But, the good news is:
You'll not have to worry abt it for at east another 25 to 30 years min.
WBCCI 5292 AIR 807
NEU #64
New England Unit
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Old 04-22-2006, 11:09 AM   #6
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1973 31' Sovereign
Danielsville , Georgia
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 768
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Not That Big of a Deal

It isn't that difficult to disassemble to at least inspect it.

Back it up onto some 6"x6" ramps (for head clearance), drill out some rivets, and peel back the belly pan from the rear. (Wear eye protection and watch for fallout.) If the bolts are rusted and shear off (I assume you're referring to black tank supports), grind them off with an angle grinder, and drill them out if necessary.

If you don't own an angle grinder, you can purchase one at your local home improvement center for less than the cost of one hour of an RV tech labor rate. If you find that more is needed (i.e. welding), you can purchase a new or used welder (depending on size and capacity) for about 4 hours of an RV tech's labor rate. You get to keep both tools when you're done.

The tank is supported by the metal box (two pieces of angle spanning the inside of the frame members) and is held close to the floor with the threaded toilet flange which screws into the inlet of the tank on top of it) The Thetford repair kit, which comes with a new stainless plate, is under $50 I think. (I've purchased two of them in the last two years and I honestly cannot remember how much they were.)

If the tank itself is leaking (which is doubtful unless it froze solid), it may be able to be repaired as well with a plastic weld for less than cost of new one.

If you get nervous and decide to pass off the repairs to someone else, you'll at least have an idea of what the problem is as well as made it easier for the repair person to inspect.
Ron Kaes
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Old 05-08-2006, 10:50 AM   #7
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1979 31' Excella 500
Detroit Area , Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 498
Images: 43
Some good news from the RV repair shop today on this one. It's just the valve gasket. I'm going to have them rebuild both valves while they are at it. Nice to get some good news once in a while.
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