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Smoke From Toilet! methane gas???

#1 User is offline   amyk 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 02:22 PM

HI,

this morning, I flushed the toilet and almost threw up from the most noxious smell!! When I turned around to look, I noticed what appeared like dry ice smoke coming from the hole!!

I immediately went outside to empty the tank, and of course, it would not completely empty (never seems to for me, until I drive it around for a bit). I used some bleach about a week ago to clean an empty tank, filled it with some water and then proceeded to use as normal for the last week.

Is there some new acid I formed using the bleach??

I usually use some tank deodorizer from WalMart, but I have had issue with completely emptying the tanks since we first got it (feb 14th) and we have lived in it every day since. I have tried to wait until it is at least 2/3 full to empty it, and I use the Sewer Solution whereby you hook up the hose to it and it has a clear head, so I can see when it's colored and then stops running. To my dismay, the black tank does not typically empty completely (in fact, I think I can count on one had when the meters shows empty) I have assumed that there must be some debris covering the sensor, and don't fret it.

I don't have the funds/knowledge right now to add a flushing system.

Should I contact Keystone, or was it something as simple as the bleach forming some sort of acid in a chemical reaction (oh, also add 90 degree temps as a heat catalyst to the formula)

As a side note, I have never had an issue with emptying the gray tanks---flows as should.
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#2 User is offline   Oregon_Camper 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 02:32 PM

I wouldn't use bleach...the tanks really don't need it. Use the proper RV chemicals and you'll be fine.

I would take a some time and fill the black tank (bring a hose in from ouside..much faster) and dump...then repeat.

Do the same thing one night and let it sit over night with 2x the normal RV chemicals....dump in the morning.

I think you might have an problem with being connected all the time. Don't leave the black tank open. Only empty with a full tank...again, in the morning is best as it will have had the entire evening to break down the waste.

Finally, and nice amount of Calgon is always good to keep the side nice and slippery.

BTW...a quickie flush system is only about $25.

#3 User is offline   mswalt 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 02:34 PM

Quote

this morning, I flushed the toilet and almost threw up from the most noxious smell!! When I turned around to look, I noticed what appeared like dry ice smoke coming from the hole!!


Like that at my house all the time. eek1 Must be my diet.....

Oh, you meant in the trailer...... My bad.

Seriously, Jim gave you the best advice, I think.

Mark
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#4 User is offline   CamperAndy 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 02:39 PM

The sewer solution is not a tank cleaner. If you can not afford a tornado flush at least get one of the wands that you stick down the toilet.

Also do you have to use the sewer solution to pump up hill??? If you can gravity drain you will get a better flush.
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#5 User is offline   tdvffjohn 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 03:40 PM

I almost want to take a wild guess that the tank chemicals you are using might have some ammonia in it and you added bleach. At the very least, it sounds like a chemical reaction.


I use the Tornado and it helps immensely. Using Calgon water softener has also made black tank maintenance easier.
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#6 User is offline   OregonCampin 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 04:13 PM

Bleach + Ammonia (in urine) is a BAD BAD combo!

"fresh urine does not contain much ammonia due to the acidic condition of urine, you can usually tell by the smell, but the enzymes in the urine break down the urea to CO2 and ammonia over time"

If you can, fill your tank with water and ice and go drive around the neighborhood to agitate. Dump and then fill again with just water and some of those chemicals you buy at Wally World. Let is sit for a day and then dump it again.
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#7 User is offline   jetjane 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 04:26 PM

View PostOREGONCAMPIN, on May 7 2009, 03:13 PM, said:

Bleach + Ammonia (in urine) is a BAD BAD combo!


Yep......I watched a program called "1000 Ways To Die" a few weeks ago and you guessed it, adding bleach to a black tank caused some guy to die. The guy had bought a used trailer and it came with a full black tank so he dumped in some bleach. A chemical reaction occurred and a toxic white cloud of gas erupted from the toilet which killed the guy before he could escape. Based on that, I'd say you got lucky!
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#8 User is offline   amyk 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 09:32 PM

View PostCamperAndy, on May 7 2009, 03:39 PM, said:

The sewer solution is not a tank cleaner. If you can not afford a tornado flush at least get one of the wands that you stick down the toilet.

Also do you have to use the sewer solution to pump up hill??? If you can gravity drain you will get a better flush.



I don't keep the valve gate open--I wait until it's at least 2/3 full--sometimes, we don't even hook up the sewer if we're only staying for a night or two.

I have used the chemicals you buy at Wally World or RV places---both with formaldehyde and not---both still leave an odor when flushing, so when it was empty, I added bleach to clean the empty tank

And, yes, it was veeeeeery lucky that I didn't die---I always have the roof vent open, and I immediately opened both doors and put fan on---then attempted to empty as much as possible, but still smells and reading 1/3 full

I know that the Sewer Solution isn't a tank cleaner, but it's the only thing long enough to reach the sewer connection, and besides, the clear 'head' allows me to see when it's 'empty'. I have used it without the water, but I don't see how that would be worse than just a regular sewer hose?? educate me please---newbie!! ;-)
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#9 User is offline   Ghosty 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 09:58 PM

To get a real clean BLACK tank...

First ... you will need five gallons of gasoline ....

Just kidding.... :P
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#10 User is offline   MJRey 

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Posted 07 May 2009 - 11:02 PM

I think the quickie flush or tornado would be the best solution. Since I put the quickie flush in it's fairly easy to get the black tank clean and then as soon as I'm done I put in the Thetford tank treatment along with a couple of gallons of water. I've never had an odor problem since I started doing this.
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#11 User is offline   CamperAndy 

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Posted 08 May 2009 - 02:44 AM

View Postamyk, on May 7 2009, 08:32 PM, said:

I know that the Sewer Solution isn't a tank cleaner, but it's the only thing long enough to reach the sewer connection, and besides, the clear 'head' allows me to see when it's 'empty'. I have used it without the water, but I don't see how that would be worse than just a regular sewer hose?? educate me please---newbie!! ;-)


This is a "Sewer Solution". If you dump without using the masticator function (using water) you will not be able to dump the solids very fast through that small drain hose.
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Are you maybe useing the "Flush King"?
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To help avoid oders in the trailer reverse the fan so it blows in when you flush.

This post has been edited by CamperAndy: 08 May 2009 - 03:04 AM

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#12 User is offline   Compulynx 

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Posted 08 May 2009 - 04:28 AM

I do not recommend the Flush King. It requires that you babysit it while flushing. If you have a fairly straight shot to the tank, instead use this:

RV Hydro Flush

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You can turn it on, and walk away for 30 minutes. It will backfill the tank until the pressure will flush out the line, then it will repeat. I use it on my tank, and it is almost spotless inside. No valve to have to open and close. The jet pressure will backfill the tank. One other advantage is it will also flush out the grey tanks! Just close the black tank valve, and open the grey.

And no, it is not spotless enough I would eat off off it.... :rolleyes:

If the drain line to the tank takes several bends, then this is not as effective. Then a quickie flush install is in order.

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#13 User is offline   Nathan 

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Posted 08 May 2009 - 04:46 AM

View PostGhosty, on May 7 2009, 10:58 PM, said:

To get a real clean BLACK tank...

First ... you will need five gallons of gasoline ....

Just kidding.... :P

And here I thought your solution would be to just upgrade. whistling

doh
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#14 User is offline   TurkeyBranch 

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Posted 08 May 2009 - 05:20 AM

View Postjetjane, on May 7 2009, 05:26 PM, said:

View PostOREGONCAMPIN, on May 7 2009, 03:13 PM, said:

Bleach + Ammonia (in urine) is a BAD BAD combo!


Yep......I watched a program called "1000 Ways To Die" a few weeks ago and you guessed it, adding bleach to a black tank caused some guy to die. The guy had bought a used trailer and it came with a full black tank so he dumped in some bleach. A chemical reaction occurred and a toxic white cloud of gas erupted from the toilet which killed the guy before he could escape. Based on that, I'd say you got lucky!


REALLY?
I have seen that show a few times, some weird stuff on there.
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#15 User is offline   jetjane 

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Posted 08 May 2009 - 11:42 AM

View PostTurkeyBranch, on May 8 2009, 04:20 AM, said:

View Postjetjane, on May 7 2009, 05:26 PM, said:

View PostOREGONCAMPIN, on May 7 2009, 03:13 PM, said:

Bleach + Ammonia (in urine) is a BAD BAD combo!


Yep......I watched a program called "1000 Ways To Die" a few weeks ago and you guessed it, adding bleach to a black tank caused some guy to die. The guy had bought a used trailer and it came with a full black tank so he dumped in some bleach. A chemical reaction occurred and a toxic white cloud of gas erupted from the toilet which killed the guy before he could escape. Based on that, I'd say you got lucky!


REALLY?
I have seen that show a few times, some weird stuff on there.


Ya, they have lots of weird things on there. Did you see the one where the alcoholic husband, who just had throat surgery and couldn't drink, got his wife to give him an enema of scotch (I think it was scotch...some kind of hard liquor anyway) instead and died from alcohol poisoning like 10 min later? I have to say that I would definitely NOT honour my husband's requests in that situation! :blink:
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