Black water holding tank in freezing temps - CamperCommunity Forums

Join Now!

Go Back   CamperCommunity Forums > Recreational Vehicles > RV / Camper Discussions is the premier Camper Community Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.

Black water holding tank in freezing temps

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-18-2011, 08:51 AM
Camper Type: Travel Trailer
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 4
Default Black water holding tank in freezing temps

We're having to stay in the rv during the winter for at least half of the time while we work on a project out in the sticks. The last couple of weeks have been freezing weather (even in Texas!) and we needed to dump the black water. Well, it was frozen...not a pretty sight. Major amounts of running water through the system got maybe half of it out. Is there some form of antifreeze solution that can be added to the tank while still in use? We can't winterize for storage since it will be in use. Any ideas? Thanks to all.
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old 01-18-2011, 10:26 AM
ctfortner's Avatar
Camping Fanatic
Camper Type: Travel Trailer
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: TN
Posts: 1,188
Blog Entries: 9

I have heard of others adding rv antifreeze into a frozen holding tank to get things moving. I have also heard of using a heat lamp and placing that close to the tank, but not touching. Just to provide some heat and possible thawing. One other thing you could try would be boiling or hot water added to the tank to thaw it enough to drain it all out.

As for keeping it thawed, they do sell holding tank blankets, you may want to look into that for using the camper throughout the winter.
States I have Camped

Ford Mainline
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 12:22 PM
frank-id's Avatar
Enthusiastic Camper
Camper Type: Motorhome
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Kimberly, Idaho
Posts: 128
Default Add salt to the tank

Any type of salt will allow the tank contents to melt. The salt will not affect the tank. Do not allow tank to become full of waste. Frank
Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2011, 08:54 AM
reinreb's Avatar
Enthusiastic Camper
Camper Type: Travel Trailer
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: New Brunswick, Canada
Posts: 32

All good ideas but keep in mind salt water freezes at 28 deg F. Make sure you don't put the heat lamp too close to the plastic holding tank. If you wrap some kind of skirt around the trailer base (tarp or cardboard) it will greatly reduce the circulating cold air that is causing the problem. Using any kind of heating device would be more efficient this way. If I had the problem though, I would use plenty of RV antifreeze mixed into the tank. Good luck.

freezing in Texas????
Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2011, 04:02 PM
Camping Guru
Camper Type: 5th Wheel
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Murrieta, CA
Posts: 964

I have heard others from other forums about this problem and some of them have put very hot water in the tanks just to get more effluent going. Just make sure that you evacuate as much of it as possible because hot water loses its heat and will freeze pretty quick, but hopefully it will be down the drain and out of your plumbing before that happens.

Can anyone else confirm or add to this?
Murrieta, CA

2006 Ford F-250/350
2006 Montana 3500RL
Tent & Backpack with all the gear
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2011, 08:10 AM
dogbone's Avatar
Addicted Camper
Camper Type: 5th Wheel
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: north jersey
Posts: 265

I, myself wouldn't use salt. It will stick together and form a blockage in your tanks. It will be tough to get it out. Especially rock salt.
Do what you can to get the stuff out. Hot water, probably the best. If and when you get it cleaned out and heating the tank is not an option, flush using windshield washer fluid. It is the cheapest antifreeze and good down to 20 below. If there is any ice left, it will tend to melt it also.
Bob & Deb
Diesel the black lab
2003 30' Cedar Creek rlbs 5 th wheel
2003 F 350 crew cab srw
6.0 powerstroke
Reply With Quote


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:43 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.1
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2015 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.