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Old 09-13-2010, 07:27 AM   #1
mustang
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Is quick dissolving TP necessary?

We were wondering if you need to buy the special TP. when we bought our unit of course we were suggested to purchase the TP from them as we would need this type but I also found this article and sounds like it is not necessary to purchase the expensive type.
Any thoughts or experience with this are the other types o.k. for the black tank, etc.................




RV 101: Do you need special RV toilet paper?



Toilet paper can be cause for arguments among RVers.

Of all the disagreements between RV owners, one of the most hotly debated revolves around one of man's most basic needs--whether or not you have to use RV specialty toilet paper in your RV sewage system.

At stake is big business, specialty brands Thetford Quick Disolving, Campa-Chem and Campco RV and Marine make big bucks off the argument that RV septic systems need special toilet paper that dissolves quickly so it doesn't form clumps, clog the system and block efforts to empty the holding tank.

But, most RV old-timers insist you don't need to hoof it to Camping World and pay an arm and a leg for specially forumlated toilet paper; you just need to choose a septic-safe one-ply tissue.

There's a quick and easy trick to figure out if your favorite brand of toilet paper is already RV-friendly:

* Take an empty Mason jar (or really any quart-sized container, we used an empty spaghetti sauce jar)
* Fill at least three-quarters full with water
* Put in two sheets of the toilet paper in question
* Shake vigorously for 30 seconds or so.
* Let it rest for 10 minutes.

When you return, if it's shredded or beginning to dissolve, you know it's safe for your RV's septic system. RVers writing in numerous RV owner forums recommend either this test or a similar one in which you leave the TP in the jar overnight and see if it has dissolved.

Among those discussing the issue in forums, Scott—a brand of household toilet paper safe for septic systems, which also comes in quick dissolving and 40 percent recycled versions—is the most recommended toilet tissue, while Angel Soft (which is inexpensive and easy to find) and Thetford (which is slightly more expensive and found at Camping World and other specialty stores) also got high marks.

While all toilet tissue these days are biodegradable, you may want to consider using 100 percent post-consumer recycled toilet paper so more trees don't have to be cut down just so you can wipe your bum. Choosing a non-bleached version won't make a difference to the effectiveness, but will prevent the waste from leaching dioxin into the environment after you dump it. Liquid Gold, which is made for RVs, is 100 percent recycled and chlorine-free.

Greenpeace also lists the best toilet papers for the environment, many of which come in one-ply, 100 percent recycled versions that are septic safe, including Seventh Generation and April Soft. For more environmental ratings on toilet paper, check the Natural Resources Defense Council ratings.

When we're trying to run RVs on our tight travel budget, why bother using recycled toilet paper? Well, according to Seventh Generation, if every household in the U.S. could replace just one roll of 500-sheet virgin fiber bathroom tissue with 100% recycled ones, we could save: 448,000 trees, over 1 million cubic feet of landfill space and 161 million gallons of water, a year’s supply for 1,270 families of four!

Which ever side you come down on in the debate over specialty toilet paper, we can all agree that wasting fewer of our natural resources is a good thing. After all, we still want there to be a National Forest when we take our grandkids RVing.
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Old 09-13-2010, 10:01 AM   #2
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Been using Scott for many years, never had a problem.
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:12 PM   #3
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Admittedly (I've posted this before) we really discourage paper from going in the black-tank and keep it for liquids as much as possible. Even the most rustic campgrounds we've come across have clean pit-toilets. Ladies are asked to deposit their wipes and other goodies (discreetly wrapped, mind you) into the garbage, which gets emptied every day as part of the routine.

That being said, if you use paper designed for septic use, you should be good-to-go (no pun intended)!

Good info, there Mustang!
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Old 09-14-2010, 08:34 AM   #4
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Indeed, great reading !!!

One question: where does recycled toliet paper come from ?
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Old 09-14-2010, 09:27 PM   #5
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Hopefully not toilet paper.

We are on septic at home home so we use one ply septic paper anyways-- I've never given it much thought. We dump every trip and I always use lots of water in the black tank.

I can't imagine why TP would start a heated debate-- the irony is funny-- talking crap about taking a crap that is.
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Old 09-15-2010, 06:07 AM   #6
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Well put JP !

I believe that TP may be one of the reasons Blk tank sensors never seem to work. Just something ya have to accept. My first experience with a water "wand" last weekend went as well as could be expected. Dragging hose into the RV was successful, and the water pressure the "wand" supplied was impressive. Very little back spray, but any is not a good thing!
I was sure the tank was empty, flushing 2-3 bowls after dumping w/gate open. My first spraying I closed the valve so I could see if it was being effective. (I have installed a "clear" 5" adapter to the RV connection)
I repeated about 3 times and the water never did get semi-clear. Adding water softener to a full tank has been known to help purge the Blk tank.
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Old 09-15-2010, 08:58 AM   #7
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did some more reading on black tanks and also found this article below..
Sorry we are first timers to the rv world. Is there a black tank chemical that you have found you like better. I also read in this article that you should keep a small amount of chemical and water in your tank when stored. We just emptied it cleaned it with the wand and came home and it is parked. Is this something we should do?



`````````````````````````````````````````````````` `````
So, you're a first time RV owner and sure, you've heard horror stories about dealing with unrelenting sewer tank problems. Afterall, dealing with such a "dirty" subject doesn't exactly fit the vision you had of spending grand vacations in the new buggy on the road across America, right?

But the truth is, self-contained living comes with a price tag, and more than just giving up a few thousand square feet of living space you're accustomed to in your home. If you ask around campgrounds and RV parks, in fact, you'll find most RV owners have a story or two to tell about those problems, most often associated with the RV's holding tank systems.

In most recreational vehicles you have some type of freshwater system, gray water and black water systems and holding tanks. While the term fresh water goes without explanation, gray water represents fresh water that has gone down the drain in the sinks and showers and into a holding tank. Black water, as you might have guessed, comes from the toilet after it is flushed.

While RV parts and appliances wear after years of service, proper care of your holding tanks and water systems can greatly reduce your problems in the long run. Learning what to do and what not to do, and when, is as important as any single aspect of the proper care you dedicate to your system. This is especially true with the black water system/tank.

There's a lot of rules you will learn to live by as a new RV owner, but rule #1 has to be, "remember proper black water tank/system care," and avoid the kinds of problems you don't want to inherit.

We've searched the blogs and articles across the Net for the best advise to get you started in the right direction. Here's some of the best advise we found:

Almost all travel trailers, fifth wheels and motor homes have holding tanks for the fresh, gray and black water. Pop-up tent trailers may only have a small fresh water holding tank and no holding tanks for gray or black water.

The “black” tank holds the waste and water from the toilet. This tank needs to be treated with chemicals to break down the solid waste and to control odors. Pop-up trailers usually use a “cassette” toilet that still needs some chemical treatment to combat odors and break down the waste.

Chemicals
There are special chemicals you should use, especially in the black tank, to reduce odors and the buildup of solids in the tank, which would cause you problems down the road. There are many brands and types on the market, from powder to liquid. Regardless of the type, it is usually recommended (or required by the campground) not to use chemicals that contain formaldehyde, which is a chemical that is harmful to some septic systems.

It is recommended to use the liquid type and and put a little in the gray tank via one of the sinks to help control odors that can come from there. Since the chemicals are also designed to help lubricate the dump valves, this is another reason for putting a little in the gray tank.

Most of the black tank chemicals advertise that 4 ounces will treat a 40-gallon tank, but there are times where you could use more or less than 4 ounces for that 40-gallon tank. Some brands require a “double dose” in hot climates (Arizona in the summer).

If you park your RV in a warm or hot location while not in use, you may want to add water to both black and gray holding tanks occasionally to keep the dump valves from drying out.

The most common additives found in newer holding tank products include tank cleaners, waste digesters, deodorizers, toilet tissue digesters, gauge sensor cleaners, and drain valve lubricants. When shopping for holding tank chemicals, look for products that contain as many of these additives as possible.

The primary function of tank chemicals is to break down waste and remove odors. Older products used formaldehyde to very successfully prevent odors. However, many septic systems can't break it down and it has a nasty habit of killing "good" bacteria. As a result, nearly all campgrounds and dump stations prohibit the draining of formaldehyde into their sewer systems.

A nice, modern alternative is enzyme-based toilet chemicals that use live bacteria to digest odor-causing agents and break down solid waste. They are designed to accelerate the digestion of organic material while maintaining a low environmental impact and low toxicity. They do lose effectiveness in temperature and water pH extremes, however, and for best results they should be introduced into a totally clean tank.

DOs and DON'Ts
Holding tanks don't rely on mechanical devices for their trouble free operation. The most common problem unpleasant one - clogging. You can minimize the chances of clogging by keeping the following considerations in mind:

Keep the black water tank knife valve tank to at least 3/4 full before draining. Be sure to cover the tank bottom with water after draining.
Use only toilet tissue formulated for tank or RV sanitation systems.
Keep both knife valves closed and locked, and the drain cap tightly in place when using the system on the road.
Use only cleaners that are approved for use in septic tank or RV sanitation systems.
Use a special holding tank deodorant chemical approved for septic tank systems in the black water holding tank. These chemicals aid the breakdown of solid wastes and make the system much more pleasant to use.
Do not put facial tissue, paper, ethylene glycol based or other automotive antifreeze, sanitary napkins or household toilet cleaners in the holding tanks.
Do not put anything solid in either tank that could scratch or puncture the tank.
If the drain system does get clogged:
Use a hand-operated probe to loosen stubborn ac***ulations. Seriously clogged P-traps may require disassembly. Be careful not to over tighten when reassembling.
Do not use harsh household drain cleaners.
Do not use motorized drain augers.

Sometimes the holding tank valve will get clogged. In this case, a hand-operated auger may be necessary. Be ready to close the valve quickly once the clog is cleared. If the seal gets damaged, it is easily replaced.

When you arrive at your destination, you can go ahead and hook up the sewer hose to the RV and to the dump hookup if you like (or you can wait and do it when you need to dump), but leave the dump valves closed until you need to dump the tanks. This will do a couple things. First, it will prevent odors from the campground sewer system from backing up into your RV. Second, it will give the chemicals in the tanks a chance to do their job.
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Old 09-15-2010, 01:12 PM   #8
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All good advice !! After dumping I always dump about 3-4 toliet fulls of clean water down into the black tank, the first containg a chemical to help with the next weekend use.
However I do not add water to the two gray tanks after dumping those, perhaps I should. Neither gray tanks are showing any sign of problems. The black tank valve is alittle difficult to close, but is operational.
A valve can be added easily to the RV sewer connection if problems arise.
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Old 09-15-2010, 03:03 PM   #9
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Only use RV TP if you like sandpapering your butt. We did the dissolve test at an RV seminar in Kelowna BC (mid june next year again) and found that the Costco Kirkland brand dissolved the best...YIPPPPPEEEE that is what I use at home...
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Old 09-15-2010, 03:51 PM   #10
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Thanks for the infoe Seann !!!
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