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Old 06-16-2021, 08:35 AM   #1
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Macerator toilet- real world use feedback

I have been very casually looking at the new 30' FC bunk. Never occurred to me until yesterday that that rear bath setup which once had the smaller near 20 gallon direct drop black tank now has a much larger black tank and this is achieved by using a macerator toilet.

I have NEVER used one of these things, but doing a search I found a youtube video that claimed it blocks/clogs pretty easy.

For those of you that have these beasts in your rig, how do you like it? Is it noisy? Does it clog as I've seen? Regularly? Does the black tank still have the black tank flush? Can you still fill the black tank with water from the toilet to flush the tank out? What about power consumption? Noticeable drain on our power if you boondock?
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Old 06-16-2021, 08:58 AM   #2
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Macerator pumps in the class B world are the norm. No issues with clogging. Just have to be careful with large clumps of TP and feminine products, paper towels etc. But that’s a good idea none the less.

Not sure on the macerator toilet specifically.

I’m a cassette toilet kind of guy. They work brilliantly and much simpler.
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Old 06-16-2021, 08:59 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panamerican View Post
I have been very casually looking at the new 30' FC bunk. Never occurred to me until yesterday that that rear bath setup which once had the smaller near 20 gallon direct drop black tank now has a much larger black tank and this is achieved by using a macerator toilet.

I have NEVER used one of these things, but doing a search I found a youtube video that claimed it blocks/clogs pretty easy.

For those of you that have these beasts in your rig, how do you like it? Is it noisy? Does it clog as I've seen? Regularly? Does the black tank still have the black tank flush? Can you still fill the black tank with water from the toilet to flush the tank out? What about power consumption? Noticeable drain on our power if you boondock?
I have owned a 2019 FC30Bunk, and now I have a 2021 Classic 33; both trailers come with the macerator toilets. To the best of my knowledge, we have only put human waste and toilet paper down these toilets. Between the 2 trailers, the 4 of us have spent about 90 nights aboard. I report no problems with either toilet.

Of course, it takes 12V power to be able to flush the john. If we're not hooked up to shore power, I make sure we have good battery charge. (Solar on the trailer and a backup Honda eu2200i in the truck help assuage my concerns, as well.) However, in my observations, the toilet doesn't consume a whole lot of power. I imagine that it can handle a wide range of input voltages, so moderately discharged batteries will still get the job done.

Other than there being a "grinder" between the bowl and the black tank, the rest of the setup is the same as any other Airstream trailer. There is still a black tank flush port outside, and you can easily add water to the black tank through the toilet. The only real complaint I have is related to the more "special" macerator toilet on my Classic. Macerators use more water than the "bombs away" RV toilets, and the model on the Classic uses a lot more water than the one on my FC.

My advice is to make sure you know where the macerator fuse is located and to be sure you have a stash of extras. I have never blown one, but I don't want to get caught with my pants down...so to speak.

One more thing to consider: Previously, I used the black tank chemicals in the pods. The pod wrapper is made of PVA which easily dissolves in water, but it sometimes didn't make it down the hatch on the first try. I can't imagine that this adds any wear and tear to the macerator, but I'm done taking chances. These days, I either dissolve the pod in a cup of warm water before dumping it in the can...or I just use the liquid tank chemicals. This is a bit more involved, but the 8-packs of single-dose product are rather convenient, if less environmentally friendly.
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Old 06-16-2021, 09:48 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panamerican View Post
I have been very casually looking at the new 30' FC bunk. Never occurred to me until yesterday that that rear bath setup which once had the smaller near 20 gallon direct drop black tank now has a much larger black tank and this is achieved by using a macerator toilet.



My '2012 AS class b has a macerator toilet. Likely because it was easier for Airstream to add that than to change the location of the black tank in my floor plan.


I have NEVER used one of these things, but doing a search I found a youtube video that claimed it blocks/clogs pretty easy.


Mine is the Thetford Sealand 8100. It is one of the few things on my coach that has worked flawlessly during my nearly 4 years of ownership*. (* I have, however, had to clean minerals from the screen at the electronic water valve a couple of times, but I've also had to clean faucet supply screens so I don't attribute that problem to the toilet.)

It's difficult to put this delicately, but suffice it to say it's handled everything we've thrown at it. Maybe more water is needed on occasion, but that is true of any toilet situation where capacity is stressed.


For those of you that have these beasts in your rig, how do you like it? Is it noisy? Does it clog as I've seen? Regularly?


I know nothing else (it's our first rig), but it's a whoosh sound and nothing annoying. No, it doesn't clog. If it fits down the hole, it's whisked away in short order. Only occasionally is a small second flush required in order to see perfectly clean water in the bottom of the bowl.

We flush as you would in a non-macerator rv toilet with the main concern being holding the valve open long enough for toilet paper to pass beyond the bowls drain valve so as not to get anything stuck in it.



Does the black tank still have the black tank flush? Can you still fill the black tank with water from the toilet to flush the tank out?


Yes, we still have the sani-flush feature. You can still run as much water down into the black tank at you need to flush it out. Just fill the bowl, then flush and repeat. You should never get the volcano of poo as everything is pulverized before it is whisked to the black tank.


What about power consumption? Noticeable drain on our power if you boondock?


Zero to worry about with power consumption. A number one flush takes only 2-3 seconds and a number two flush more than 5-10 seconds. These are very brief power demands with no impact on battery capacity when boondocking. Our biggest drain is the Novacool 3.1 cf fridge that draws 50-70 amps per day.



See comments above.
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Old 06-17-2021, 06:32 AM   #5
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Thanks a bunch all. I had never considered a toilet like this and now with kids, floorplan needs change and looks like a lot has changed inside the Airstreams since my last purchase. Thanks again!!
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Old 06-17-2021, 09:16 AM   #6
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Macerator

I used the Macerator in my 2011 Airstream Interstate for 6 years. I operated flawlessly the whole time. Clean, quick and easy. I now have a Unity with the old system and hate it. Messy, time consuming and antiquated. I am seriously considering trying to switch it to the macerator system
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Old 06-17-2021, 09:25 AM   #7
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Hi

There are multiple "flavors" of macerator toilets.

One puts the pump at the toilet and runs the output to a "normal" black tank. That tank is drained by gravity and a "stinky slinky" hose.

Another runs the toilet into the black tank. When it's time to empty things, the pump is used on the tank contents to pump them out. No gravity fed exit hose involved.

They all get called macerator toilets. One would *guess* there are odd quirks associated with each "flavor".

Bob
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Old 06-17-2021, 09:26 AM   #8
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No issues in our Classic 33; attached is the operators manual. End of trip cleaning is important...7.3 (I use Dawn). Also this is a 2-phase operation...read 6.2.2/6.3.2; Normal Operation (more water) will fill the black tank in about 1-1/2 days; using the dry bowl (less water) will last about 8 days. We are 2 adults. We like it.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 600346367 Dometic 8700 MasterFlush toilet-OPERATION.pdf (230.7 KB, 8 views)
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Old 06-17-2021, 09:29 AM   #9
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The "much larger black tank" associated with the macerator toilet will get filled much faster by the macerator toilet, in my experience. My 26U has a macerator toilet, because the black tank is in the same position as the other floorplans that have the split bathroom so they needed the macerator to ship the effluent across to it. I haven't had problems with clogs or operation, but it requires WAY more water to get the bowl "clear" than a gravity toilet, so the black fills a bit faster than the gray even when I'm not being conservative with graywater.
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Old 06-17-2021, 10:00 AM   #10
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We installed a Raritan Seaera QC when we redid our 58.

PRO:
Allows more placement options, doesn't require to be directly over tank.
The smart controller can be programmed to change amount of water or length of time macerator runs.
With the smart controller you can attach a sensor to the black water tank so it won't flush when the tank is full and a red light displays on the control panel.
Has an option for a larger bowl, not quite household size but close.
The base can be rotated a 1/4 turn to 'aim' the side discharge direction.
Since the drain isn't through the mounting base, I could add a spacer to bring the seat height up.

CONS:
Its loud inside the trailer.
It does use more water than the standard trailer models.
It does require P trap type of drain line to retain water in the bowl and shut out black water odors. (I've had no problems with the water splashing/draining out while on the road.)
Pressurized water line is required.
It's expensive. The price has gone up quite a bit since I bought ours 5 years ago.
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Old 07-20-2021, 09:06 PM   #11
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30’ FC Bunkhouse macerator stopped working

I just purchased a 2021 FC 30’ Bunkhouse. It also has a macerator toilet; it stopped working just two weeks after we bought the unit. We are currently traveling and now don’t have a working toilet. I’m unable to find any in-line fuse or able to remedy the problem. The toilet is a Dometic Model 8140. I called the dealership and talked with the service department with no answers. Any help or pointers are appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 07-20-2021, 09:35 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hatski View Post
I just purchased a 2021 FC 30’ Bunkhouse. It also has a macerator toilet; it stopped working just two weeks after we bought the unit. We are currently traveling and now don’t have a working toilet. I’m unable to find any in-line fuse or able to remedy the problem. The toilet is a Dometic Model 8140. I called the dealership and talked with the service department with no answers. Any help or pointers are appreciated. Thanks!

Welcome to the forum!

If it won't flush, I'm afraid I can't help other than to suggest you call Airstream.

If it won't fill with water, however, I can suggest you find the electronic water valve and clean the screen. They can clog with debis, but it usually happens slowly over weeks or months. Mine has done this twice and hopefully for the last time.


Good luck.
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Old 07-20-2021, 11:14 PM   #13
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hatski, try checking your fuses in your converter panel. Mine blew out once on a trip and quit working. If you press the flush button while you or someone observes the fuse panel it will light up and alert you that it's blown. That's how I found the problem. I believe it's a 15 amp fuse that I replaced. I now keep spares in my airstream. Good luck!
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Old Yesterday, 12:00 PM   #14
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Thanks a bunch! The 20 Amp fuse in the panel was blown; however, no indicator light was illuminated to indicate a blown fuse. The labeling on the panel didn't state a specific fuse for the macerator. We're up and running now :-) I'll check the panel first the next time this happens.
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