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HELP! Toilet plugged!


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I'm no expert on this but I do know from experience that the tank level indicator is usually only accurate for about 20 minutes after you first use the toliet. Possibly the black tank is actually full and only needs dumping to allow the toilet water to go down...maybe that's a "dumb blonde" solution but ya never know! Good luck!

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Does your toilet flush drop straight down into the tank, or is there a bend in the drain line between the toilet and the tank? It sounds as though you probably have a bend in the line and the solids are hanging up in that bend. Such a bend would also prevent pushing a broom handle down through the line. If you fill the bowl and then turn off the water so that no more enters the bowl, then hold the flush valve open for a few minutes, will that water slowly drain out? If so, that indicates that the tank is not full and the line isn't completely blocked yet, but is only enough to stop the exiting of solids.

 

How often do you dump the tank and do you allow it to fill at least half full before dumping?

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I think you have the dreaded pyramid. This usually results from not using enough water when flushing and after emptying the tank. Always start out with at least 5 or 6 gallons of water in the tank - never dry. A spray wand on the end of a hose may work from the top down.

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My husband just cleared it. He went to Home Depot and made a 6' wand with a sprayed attachment on the end. He attached a hose at one end and put that down the toilet. All the yuck kept filling back into the toilet. He scooped it out into a bucket and dumped that down the sewer connection. He did that 5 or 6 times. I poured boiling water down the tank while he did the flush. It finally broke free.

We've been using Angel Soft tp and Environmentally friendly tank treatment. No more of that. I want the caustic toxic rat killing chemical down there doing the job!! I think we haven't been adding enough water to the tank though. This is one of those newbie full timer lessons!! It sucks!!!!! But we're laughing about it now!! Today is our 2 week anniversary of full timing!

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I know exactly what you did. We did it too......cause nobody told us either!!!!! Bottom line, use less paper and more water. If you don't, the paper and poo "piles" under the downspout entering into the tank causing the plugging. I use Scott's soft and easy (soft 1 ply) with no issues now. Here's my rules after 11 years of FTIng. Pee only = just quick flush. P and paper = after you flush let water run to the count of 4. Poo and paper = flush to the count of 7. At first you'll think it's too much water.......don't worry, it's not. Also if you have guests that happen to stay a day or two and are not RVers.....need to be instructed the proper use of the toilet flush pattern. Simple as that. HTHs.Good Luck, rockin'

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I know exactly what you did. We did it too......cause nobody told us either!!!!! Bottom line, use less paper and more water. If you don't, the paper and poo "piles" under the downspout entering into the tank causing the plugging. I use Scott's soft and easy (soft 1 ply) with no issues now. Here's my rules after 11 years of FTIng. Pee only = just quick flush. P and paper = after you flush let water run to the count of 4. Poo and paper = flush to the count of 7. At first you'll think it's too much water.......don't worry, it's not. Also if you have guests that happen to stay a day or two and are not RVers.....need to be instructed the proper use of the toilet flush pattern. Simple as that. HTHs.Good Luck, rockin'

 

THIS should be written on the Newbies full timers guide....laminated and posted above the toilet!!!

Thanks!!

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I know exactly what you did. We did it too......cause nobody told us either!!!!! Bottom line, use less paper and more water. If you don't, the paper and poo "piles" under the downspout entering into the tank causing the plugging. I use Scott's soft and easy (soft 1 ply) with no issues now. Here's my rules after 11 years of FTIng. Pee only = just quick flush. P and paper = after you flush let water run to the count of 4. Poo and paper = flush to the count of 7. At first you'll think it's too much water.......don't worry, it's not. Also if you have guests that happen to stay a day or two and are not RVers.....need to be instructed the proper use of the toilet flush pattern. Simple as that. HTHs.Good Luck, rockin'

 

Dang , That's pretty complicated .

 

We use a much simpler 'rule' : #1 = 1/2+ bowl of water ( be sure any paper floats ) . #2 = 2 bowls of water .

 

Always run a few bowls full after a tank dump .

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If you're near Costco their Kirkland brand TP is excellent. I think you also discovered that you can't go by the tank monitor if yours said 1/3 full. If you're in a full hookup site now this would be a good time to use water very very generously to really get that tank cleaned out. If you have a backflush connection use that a lot before you start traveling. In 16 years of full-timing all we used was water - no chemicals. Now that you got this problem solved the others won't seem so bad! :) Good luck!!

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Kirk, Amen and Amen. LOTS OF WATER!!!! I used chemicals in the black tank for about 6 years and after reviewing with many of the folks that I really respect regarding RVs, told me they don't use them. I quit and never looked back. I do, however, do a super good flush (3 tankfuls) on every dump. Probably overkill, but I do it anyway. Never had a problem on gauge reading on black of any of the 3 rigs I've own. Enough of that!!! rockin'

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Do not leave the black tank valve open! Open valve and dump black tank only when it is 2/3 full or more. If the gage is not working properly (as most don't) you will become accustomed to how long it takes for your usual occupants. There are two of us full time in our fiver with a 50 gal black tank and it is good for 14-16 days and we use plenty of water. Forget the chemicals and use PLENTY OF WATER ! Also get rid of the Angel soft. We have also heard that Kirkland is good to use, but we don't find Costco convenient for us. We use Scott single ply and never a problem after nearly 5 years full time.

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6:00 Saturday night and our toilet is plugged. The Black water tank says 1/3 full. My husband tried poking a broom handle down the toilet. The water isn't going down the toilet. No plumber will come out or help us right now until Monday. Hubby just ran to Home Depot to buy a snake!

Any tips!!??

 

 

Yes, it's been dumped many times. It seems to be clogged at the toilet. My husband has resorted to sticking a hose down the toilet to try to flush it out. It keeps backing up so he's taking buckets of YUCK and dumping that down the parks sewer connection.

 

 

My husband just cleared it. He went to Home Depot and made a 6' wand with a sprayed attachment on the end. He attached a hose at one end and put that down the toilet. All the yuck kept filling back into the toilet. He scooped it out into a bucket and dumped that down the sewer connection. He did that 5 or 6 times. I poured boiling water down the tank while he did the flush. It finally broke free.

We've been using Angel Soft tp and Environmentally friendly tank treatment. No more of that. I want the caustic toxic rat killing chemical down there doing the job!! I think we haven't been adding enough water to the tank though. This is one of those newbie full timer lessons!! It sucks!!!!! But we're laughing about it now!! Today is our 2 week anniversary of full timing!

I am not clear on just what the problem is/was with your black tank/toilet problem.

 

In reading through your three entries quoted above, it really sounds like your problem was that when you tried to dump your black tank down your sewer hose to the RV Parks sewer line, little or nothing was coming out. In other words the problem was not that the toilet pipe to the black tank was clogged, but that the "yuck" was clogging the pipe going to the dump valve.

 

It sounds like your black tank was totally filled. I come to that conclusion since when you put a hose, or the spray attachment down the toilet the yuck kept coming up into the toilet. Look at the second quote above.

 

In your the last quote "I poured boiling water down the tank while he did the flush do you mean that he opened the dump valve going to your sewer hose? That also seems to confirm the blockage was not at the toilet, but where the black tank goes to the dump valve.

 

While it is important to not leave the black tank dump valve open, because the solids will build up and clog up the black tank. It is also important to learn just how long it takes for your black tank to get to 1/2-3/4 full. Over time you get a feel for just how much in in the black tank, by listening to how long it takes for the yuck to run down the sewer hose when you dump. You can't depend on the tank sensors, they are very unreliable. Or if you have been using the black tank for 3-4 days and you go to dump, not a whole lot is coming out, you know you have a problem. Then you need to take care of that problem before the black tank fills and backs up into the toilet.

 

On most of the RV's we have owned I can detect a slight difference in the sound the toilet flush makes when the yuck in the toilet hits the black tank when the black tank is empty, or less than 1/4 full, and when the tank is over 3/4 full. It takes several fills and dumps to notice the difference but on many RV's the sound is detectable.

 

There is a definite learning curve to RV'ing. As you have learned, it is not like living in a sticks and bricks.

 

Keep at it, things will get better!

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Hubby said the clog was at the first 90 degree angle coming out of the tank. I think, like you guys said, we needed more water.....like other newbies...we didn't know. We will change tp's to Scott's. We're not Costco members plus, where we're going for the next 6 months, the nearest Costco, and Walmart, are over 2 hours away.

This will go into the books as one of those stories to share!!!

Thanks everyone!

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I see this pop up on forums ever so often. Always some never have an issue and others do. We have never done anything special. Just adequate water, not a lot either, and dump when it burps. But our first unit had a straight shot into tank. That setup would be hard to clog. A turn (90 degree) fitting would clog easily. Only long sweeps are permitted in homes. Not so in campers. Some are standard 90's. Our Teton has a turn but it is Sweeps and not standard 90's. Would be hard to clog. Now the "pyramid of poop" can happen to anyone when leaving black valve open.

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We use lots of water, no chemical. I dont dump until the tank is at least 1/2 full or more which means a good 5 days or a week. Dont be in a hurry to dump. With lots of water in there you want the solids to disolve to a slurry and they will. iMO dumping every 2 days is too often.

 

I too believe that driving before dumping is a good thing to get everything sloshed around good. I usually dump when I get to my destination rather than dumping before we leave....unless the tank is full.

 

I also use the tank flush/rinse system a lot....at least 3 fills until the clear fitting I have on there runs with clear water and not brown.

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My husband just cleared it. He went to Home Depot and made a 6' wand with a sprayed attachment on the end. He attached a hose at one end and put that down the toilet. All the yuck kept filling back into the toilet. He scooped it out into a bucket and dumped that down the sewer connection. He did that 5 or 6 times. I poured boiling water down the tank while he did the flush. It finally broke free.

We've been using Angel Soft tp and Environmentally friendly tank treatment. No more of that. I want the caustic toxic rat killing chemical down there doing the job!! I think we haven't been adding enough water to the tank though. This is one of those newbie full timer lessons!! It sucks!!!!! But we're laughing about it now!! Today is our 2 week anniversary of full timing!

 

Glad to see that you got the problem solved, BUT I don't think you can use the cop out of being a newbie. With as much research you've done before going fulltime you should have been a veteran from the start and I know this topic has been brought up before. LOL.

I think what we learn, sometimes the hard way and sometimes from reading about others problems is that when we start out we tend to flush and when the waste disappears we stop, something like the S&B hit the flusher and walk away.

I boondock a lot, so there's a fine line between using to much water and running out or tanks fill, or not enough and having issues like yours.

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We taught our extended family to fill the bowl until all solids float before pushing the lever the rest of the way down quickly. That worked for our straight shot plumbing. We also added a couple bowlfuls of water after dumping. We couldn't do the 5-6 gallons recommended above because out tanks were too small to handle that.

 

Linda Sand

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Glad to see that you got the problem solved, BUT I don't think you can use the cop out of being a newbie. With as much research you've done before going fulltime you should have been a veteran from the start and I know this topic has been brought up before. LOL.

I think what we learn, sometimes the hard way and sometimes from reading about others problems is that when we start out we tend to flush and when the waste disappears we stop, something like the S&B hit the flusher and walk away.

I boondock a lot, so there's a fine line between using to much water and running out or tanks fill, or not enough and having issues like yours.

You know, with all the research we did, we never even thought about potty research!!

It's not a question you'd think to ask 'how long do YOU flush?'

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