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Old 06-20-2015, 08:30 PM   #1
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Grey Tank (Kitchen Sink) Starting to Stink

Any thoughts on how to make this smell go away? Bleach? Might just be our P trap but gotta do something about it before it gets out of hand.
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Old 06-20-2015, 08:39 PM   #2
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In our trailer the smell was caused by a defective studor vent under the sink. Replaced that and everything was good.
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Old 06-20-2015, 08:58 PM   #3
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Grey water tanks can grow some funky stuff, especially in the heat of the summer. I use the same enzymatic cleaner that I put in my black water and that takes care of it.

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Old 06-20-2015, 09:38 PM   #4
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Check the vent valve in the line from the sink to the tank. It's probably stuck and letting gasses into the cabin.
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Old 06-20-2015, 09:48 PM   #5
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Vent valve? Where's it? Or what's it look like?
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Old 06-20-2015, 09:59 PM   #6
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Look under the sink, back against the wall. Mine is a black conical shaped fitting that looks like an oversize pipe cap. It has a valve in it that is supposed to let air in, but not out. That, however wasn't my smell problem. Road vibration had loosened all the fittings on the sink drains. When the gray tank gets full somehow it puts back pressure on the sink P-traps and they hold more water than they should. The loose fittings leaked just enough water under the sink to make it smelly. I drained the tank and tightened up the fittings (after taking it all apart expecting to find a stopped up trap - I didn't) and the smell went away.

I use the "GEO Method". My PO's let the black tank get pretty crudded up. It's getting better, but the sensors still aren't right.

RV Tank Sensors &The GEO Method – Wheeling It

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Old 06-21-2015, 12:54 AM   #7
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Be careful using bleach. While it will work, it can make some horrific smelling and dangerous fumes when contacting organic stuff. Use lots of ventilation and thorough rinsing.
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Old 06-21-2015, 04:32 AM   #8
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When I put a little pine sol in water to clean, I always wipe the kitchen sink out well and slosh a little of this down the drain.

When I use a little diluted bleach to clean the bathroom, I pour a bit of this solution down the drain.

Not at the same time.

Keeps everything smelling "neutral".


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Old 06-21-2015, 06:35 AM   #9
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The Geo Method.
http://Thegeomethod.blogspot.com/
Mix 1 cup Calgon, 1 cup dish washing soap and 1 cup bleach in 1 gallon of water. Poor equal parts down each sink and the shower drain. Make sure that water remains in the drain traps.

This can be used in both black and gray tank. I have been experimenting with this for the past month without the use of any additional septic or holding tank chemicals. So far no odors.
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Old 06-21-2015, 10:42 AM   #10
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Smelly gray water tank.

Rv Travel had a good suggestion for smelly tanks. 1/2 cup Borax to 1/4 cup Calgon Water Softner. I haven't tried it, but sound like it might work?
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Old 06-21-2015, 11:11 AM   #11
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I too use a black tank "tab" a couple of time a year in the grey tank and that seems to prevent any smell issues.
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Old 06-21-2015, 11:17 AM   #12
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We have the same issue with our Bambi 16 which only has a black tank. Anyone know if the above fixes apply to the Bambi?
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:37 PM   #13
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Maggie and Michael are on the right track. For the past 15 years, the only tank chemicals we have used are Pine Sol and Cascade. Before departure and every time we dump the Grey Tank, we pour Pine Sol into each of the shower, sink and wash basin traps. Pour a little in the toilet as well. On the last day out, before departure, we send about a 1/2 cup of Cascade dishwasher detergent into each tank. When we get home we dump both tanks. Never had a smell. Oh -- and our sensors seem to work correctly.

BTW - tanks take a lot longer to empty than you (or I, at least) imagined. Invest in one of the clear elbow attachments for your sewer line. By watching the clear section, you can tell when you've gotten all the crud and paper out of the black tank. I dump, then run the sewer sweep for about 5 minutes, then dump again. I find it usually takes 3 cycles to really empty the tank. If you have a teenager along, count on 5 cycles (ask me how I know).
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Old 06-21-2015, 01:02 PM   #14
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First thing is to not let organic material into the holding tank.
Can't avoid doing this totally, but make sure you have a fine screen strainer in the drain hole of your sinks. This helps quite a bit. Also, when connected to sewer, leave grey water tank valve open most of the time so waste water runs to sewer.
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Old 06-21-2015, 01:07 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by remphoto View Post
We have the same issue with our Bambi 16 which only has a black tank. Anyone know if the above fixes apply to the Bambi?
If your black tank is offloading odors, and you are using chemicals in there, may be that you need some pressurized water to remove buildup.

Some carry a separate hose, and one of those wand things that are made for such purposes.

Not having space for an extra hose, we always just ran the hose at a dump station into the toilet and flushed/cleaned it out that way.


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Old 06-21-2015, 08:39 PM   #16
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All the above on checking the vents, and baking soda down the drain works great to kill the odors.
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Old 06-22-2015, 09:00 PM   #17
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Thanks for the advice. I'm leery about what chemicals I put down the drains and are using completely biodegradable soaps. (Supposedly) We do this because we are parked for an extended stay (two months) without a sewer hookup.

We are hanging onto the black tank for now and plan to dump tomorrow into a portable tank to haul of to the dump station. The grey tank we hold on to for a while then let drain off to a no walking area.

Some of our problem may be just that... hanging onto the grey stuff until the tank is mostly full. Normally we'd have sewer and leave the valve open. Will try draining more frequently and seeing if that's a start.
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Old 08-14-2015, 03:27 PM   #18
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I also have a 25' 1997 Safari. Does the gray water tank have a vent pipe through the roof as does the black water tank? It doesn't appear to, but could conceivably share the black water vent. Opinions appreciated.
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Old 08-14-2015, 07:09 PM   #19
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I believe mine does... 2015 model though. It has two of those little white stacks on the top. One over where the black vent goes through the bathroom and one I assume next to the shower, so opposite side for grey. Our problem was resolved when we stopped putting ANY sort of food waste down the kitchen sink and keeping the grey outflow valve open.
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Old 08-14-2015, 07:21 PM   #20
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If the gray tank stinks inside, the contents will stink wherever you dump them. Why not take the gray water to the dump station also? If you are in a park you may get in trouble just dumping gray water anywhere. Like a fine or dismissal from your campsite.
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