Dear Dr. R.V. Shrink:
When my husband talked me into buying an RV and traveling he said the bathroom facilities would be just as comfortable and convenient as our home. It all looked good, but now we often have to put up with a plugged up toilet. I didn’t sign up for this. He keeps telling me he has it figured out. Everything moves along fine for awhile, but then our holding tank seems to get bound up again. Is there an Ex-Lax for RV’s? I am enjoying the lifestyle but this little glitch is turning me off. My husband says I am making a mountain out of a mole hill. Am I being unreasonable? I just want to get rid of the mountainous mole hill in the black water tank. Is that asking too much?
--Stink hole in Yellowstone
Raising a little stink will often bring an issue to a head. If this is the only problem you have with the RV lifestyle, you have had a smooth move. The transition often causes problems that couples cannot find any common ground. In your case I have lots of ideas that should solve your problem. There is a science to getting along with your RV plumbing. Several things to be aware of include using toilet paper that breaks down easily. A simple test is to put a few sheets in a jar and shake it. It should fall apart quickly. Another problem is using too little water, trying to extend the black water capacity. Use plenty of water when flushing and always put a couple bowls full in the tank after dumping. Pouring hot water directly down the bowl opening will help unclog present blockage, but care in how you use the system will assure fewer problems in the future. Some black water tanks are plumbed for rinsing, many companies offer chemicals and tank enzymes, but using the proper method of caring for the waste system will solve the majority of your problems and give you some relief, no pun intended.
--Keep Smilin’, Dr. R.V. Shrink