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Old 06-20-2013, 08:54 AM   #1
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Sanitizing Water Lines

I am looking at sanitizing my water system this weekend for the first time. I've read the manual and it does not seem to be difficult but like everything I do for the first time with the trailer I like running it past the forum for feedback.

We do not plan on drinking the water from any connection whether it be the holding tank, or the hookup. We will be cooking and drinking bottled water. Although I might toss a couple gallons in the holding tank for any toilet stops along the way. I imagine that it is still right to sanitize the system for the lines and and the hot water tank. My manual says to fill the holding tank with the mixture, let it sit for 4 hours, then run through the lines and drain. If I do not plan on using the holding tank should I just run a small amount of mixture through the lines and water heater from the water pump and then flush? If so should I just keep flushing until I cannot smell the mixture?

Another query, bearing in mind the trailer is 3 years old and I bought it used so not 100% sure of the history I might end up filling the holding tank and flushing so that I know it is done.

1. Is this 50ppm mixture safe to drain in to the ditch?
2. If I do not plan on using the holding tank, and do not sanitize the tank is there a different mixture of concentrate to use just for the lines and water tank?

Jim
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Old 06-20-2013, 10:21 AM   #2
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Yes do it all. We don't drink from any of it either, but failure to sanitize can cause any residual water to grow microbes that don't smell very good.

My procedure:
1) Fill holding tank with water and a 1/2 cup or so of bleach.
2) Turn on the pump and let it fill the hot water tank
3) Turn on each hot and cold faucet until you smell the bleach. Flush the toilet too.
4) Let it stand for a day
5) Drain everything
6) Repeat the process but instead of bleach use baking soda. This neutralizes any remaining bleach to get rid of the bleach smell and taste (not that we drink from it)

A few years ago we started to get a bad smell in the water system of our old Kiwi. I had to run through this procedure two full cycles to get rid of it, and twice a summer. I finally figured out that if you don't drain the hot water tank after each use, it can cause bad odors.
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Old 06-20-2013, 10:41 AM   #3
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I would add that you do not want to add the bleach by just dumping it in. You need to mix your bleach in a jug with water. Add water to your tank, add bleach/water mixture and then continue to fill the tank.
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Old 06-20-2013, 10:53 AM   #4
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Sanitizing Water Lines

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Originally Posted by campingdog View Post
I would add that you do not want to add the bleach by just dumping it in. You need to mix your bleach in a jug with water. Add water to your tank, add bleach/water mixture and then continue to fill the tank.

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Old 06-20-2013, 08:11 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by DocBrown View Post
6) Repeat the process but instead of bleach use baking soda. This neutralizes any remaining bleach to get rid of the bleach smell and taste (not that we drink from it)

A few years ago we started to get a bad smell in the water system of our old Kiwi. I had to run through this procedure two full cycles to get rid of it, and twice a summer. I finally figured out that if you don't drain the hot water tank after each use, it can cause bad odors.
So I filled the water system this evening and plan to let it sit overnight as the smell coming from the hot water tank was really rotten eggy. Anyway when I put the neutralizing mix in tomorrow, how much baking soda should I use for 37 gallons? And on top of that do I have to flush the whole system out again with just plain water or just allow the neutralizing solution to drain until I get to the campground and fill? Oh, an one other question, roughly how long does it take to drain the system with the low point drain? I know I can use the grey tank drain but is it alright to do that for 37 gallons and let the water pump run that long?
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Old 06-20-2013, 08:32 PM   #6
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You don't have to use baking soda. You and just flush the system a few times. Make sure you ran bleach through all of the water lines, shower hose, outside shower hose, toilet, sinks, etc. The rotten egg smell is from bacteria growing in the water heater. The bleach will get rid of it.
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Old 06-20-2013, 08:37 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by tlhdoc View Post
You don't have to use baking soda. You and just flush the system a few times. Make sure you ran bleach through all of the water lines, shower hose, outside shower hose, toilet, sinks, etc. The rotten egg smell is from bacteria growing in the water heater. The bleach will get rid of it.
I ran the bleach through everything right back to the outside shower.
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Old 06-21-2013, 08:57 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huntsvillian View Post
So I filled the water system this evening and plan to let it sit overnight as the smell coming from the hot water tank was really rotten eggy. Anyway when I put the neutralizing mix in tomorrow, how much baking soda should I use for 37 gallons? And on top of that do I have to flush the whole system out again with just plain water or just allow the neutralizing solution to drain until I get to the campground and fill? Oh, an one other question, roughly how long does it take to drain the system with the low point drain? I know I can use the grey tank drain but is it alright to do that for 37 gallons and let the water pump run that long?
Maybe half a cup of baking soda? Doesn't take much. Just drain it by opening the fresh water drain. No need to flush again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tlhdoc View Post
You don't have to use baking soda. You and just flush the system a few times.
You're right you don't. But it's more work and personally I can still smell the bleach even after flushing it a few times. I don't want the trailer smelling like a swimming pool. So rather than have to go through flushing several more times, I just use the baking soda and only have to do it once.

Quote:
Make sure you ran bleach through all of the water lines, shower hose, outside shower hose, toilet, sinks, etc. The rotten egg smell is from bacteria growing in the water heater. The bleach will get rid of it.
Exactly.
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Old 06-22-2013, 09:56 AM   #9
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When I sanitized my lines I mixed the bleach/water a little stronger than I should have - used about 1.5 cups of bleach for 48gal of water and let it sit overnight. Any harm in doing this?
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Old 06-22-2013, 11:04 AM   #10
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I am always putting more bleach than I should and never had any problems as long as I ran a lot of water through the lines to flush it out real well afterward.
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