Holding Tanks – Rules to Know When Draining Your Tanks

All RV’S have what are known as a gray water tank and a black water tank. Water that comes from your bathroom sink, shower and your kitchen is collected in this gray water tank. Water from the toilet is collected in the black water tank. These two tanks meet at one outlet which is for emptying both of them and to which the sewage pipe is connected.

To reach the outlet you may need to join two hoses together so make sure you have the correct couplings and connectors. Heavy duty hoses are the best as they can withstand a lot more than cheaper types. It is recommended that you have at least two lengths of hose one at 10 feet long the other 20 foot long.

Before you hook up your sewage hose make sure that both of the outlet valves are closed then remove the cap. You then make the connection by turning the adaptor clockwise until it’s locked in position. Unroll your hose and take it to the campgrounds sewage connector. Be sure you make a tight connection when you apply the adaptor. Its always a good idea to support your sewage hose from the RV end so you can make sure your tanks get completely emptied. Remember small valve is for the gray tank and the large valve is for the black water tank.

Two rules to remember when draining your tanks:

1. Try and wait until the black water tank is nearly full before you empty, it works on gravity and weight so you want those two forces working together to be sure it’s drained properly.

2. Never leave the black water tank valve open on site and expect it to work the same way your toilet works at home, they don’t both work in the same fashion.

When the tanks are both close to being full always empty the black tank first this way when you empty the gray tank its contents will help to flush your hoses clean. It is permissible to open the gray tank valve a little when your at a site for an extended length of time. This way it can empty whilst it’s being used, but never ever do this with the black tank. If you only at the site for a short time but would still like to flush the tanks you can do this by filling them up with fresh water and then dump them. Its always a good idea to have different colored hoses for each of the tanks you don’t want your drinking water hose used for draining the black tank.

After emptying both your tanks you need to clean them thoroughly. A good product called Flush King is great for this. It works on a back flush method that’s connected directly to your sewer outlet it will rinse and clean both tanks at the same time.

Always use chemicals and papers that are not only RV friendly but environmentally friendly as well.