Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 07-27-2017, 12:12 PM   #1
Gold Member
 
Shore-T's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Rocket City, Alabama
Posts: 77
Default Macerator Pump/Dump Hose Questions...

I have a 2014 Roadtrek 190 Popular and am curious if there is a backup dumping procedure if the macerator pump experiences a catastrophic failure? Does anyone have experience with this situation on this model? I looked through the users guide and found no mention of this condition. Common sense would dictate tht there be a backup procedure on such a critical item. Your responses are welcomed.

Best. Shorty (aka Shore-T) sends...
__________________

__________________
Best. Shorty (aka Shore-T) sends...

Blessed with way more than I deserve.
Shore-T is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2017, 01:01 PM   #2
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 7,581
Default

You are on the premier site for information on alternative sewage removal methods-what a claim to fame--

http://www.classbforum.com/forums/f5...dump-3254.html

http://www.classbforum.com/forums/f8...etup-3279.html

I am sure there are a few others threads also, as Avanti and Marko have also done systems them in the past.
__________________

booster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2017, 02:39 PM   #3
Gold Member
 
Shore-T's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Rocket City, Alabama
Posts: 77
Default Macerator Emergency Tank Dump Follow Up

Quote:
Originally Posted by booster View Post
You are on the premier site for information on alternative sewage removal methods-what a claim to fame--

http://www.classbforum.com/forums/f5...dump-3254.html

http://www.classbforum.com/forums/f8...etup-3279.html

I am sure there are a few others threads also, as Avanti and Marko have also done systems them in the past.
Hey booster you're right, what a claim to fame! Thanks for the info and feedback. Well first I am not a plumber. However I’m willing to give this a go (no pun intended).

I really can’t believe that the manufacturer did not provide or develop a secondary emergency use only tank drain procedure… Having a single point of failure on anything mechanical is “number 10” in my book e.g. not good.

These are some facts:
1. We do not # 2 in the toilet. Call me freakish but that’s the way we roll.
2. This modification/enhancement is to be used in case of a catastrophic failure of the macerator only.

Proposed solution:
1. Replace the end cap depicted on the attached jpeg as # 1 with a cover that facilitates the attachment of a large diameter garden hose, preferably with a 90 degree angle. This coupling would be capped during normal macerator operations.
2. In case of macerator failure, the cap cover would be removed and a hose, preferably a large diameter garden hose would be attached.
3. In an effort to improve flow of liquid by products when dumping the black tank, it may be useful to raise the passenger rear of the vehicle to improve gravity flow (forward) with leveling blocks or the like.
4. Open black valve and drain the black tank as required.
5. Close black valve
4. In an effort to improve flow of liquid by products when dumping the grey tank, it may be useful to raise the passenger front of the vehicle to improve gravity flow (rearward) with leveling blocks or the like.
5. Open gray valve and drain the gray tank as required.
5. Close gray valve
6. Rinse off hose connection area with fresh water. Attach cap. Clean up dump area as required.

It's not a pretty and sexy solution but do you think it will work?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Slide1.JPG (186.0 KB, 21 views)
__________________
Best. Shorty (aka Shore-T) sends...

Blessed with way more than I deserve.
Shore-T is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2017, 03:00 PM   #4
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 7,581
Default

There have been several attempts at adapting the cleanout port but most have been really tough because there was not enough room from the plug to the grey tank, or room to spin a fitting or QD in place. Your pic may show more room, but hard to say from the angle.

If you can get a hose attached by some method, it certainly will work, as numerous folks have drained tanks out that port, either over a sewer drain or into buckets (yeah, I know). If all liquid, no solids or paper, a small hose is OK, but you would need bigger by a lot if not all liquid.

You will have upwards of 1/2 gallon or more of liquid in the piping to macerator, even with the valves closed, so removing a cover or putting in a fitting will still be a bit messy. The only way around that would be the extra valve as shown in the links or a permanent QD in place that has an internal shutoff.

We have never had a macerator failure, but many have, and I agree that not having an easy backup dump is a big downside, as it can end a trip or make for a costly trip and drive to a dealer to fix. Some even carry a spare macerator with them, just in case. We chose to go with the full service gravity drain option, as in the link, even though it was a lot more work.
booster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2017, 03:10 PM   #5
Gold Member
 
Shore-T's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Rocket City, Alabama
Posts: 77
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by booster View Post
There have been several attempts at adapting the cleanout port but most have been really tough because there was not enough room from the plug to the grey tank, or room to spin a fitting or QD in place. Your pic may show more room, but hard to say from the angle.

If you can get a hose attached by some method, it certainly will work, as numerous folks have drained tanks out that port, either over a sewer drain or into buckets (yeah, I know). If all liquid, no solids or paper, a small hose is OK, but you would need bigger by a lot if not all liquid.

You will have upwards of 1/2 gallon or more of liquid in the piping to macerator, even with the valves closed, so removing a cover or putting in a fitting will still be a bit messy. The only way around that would be the extra valve as shown in the links or a permanent QD in place that has an internal shutoff.

We have never had a macerator failure, but many have, and I agree that not having an easy backup dump is a big downside, as it can end a trip or make for a costly trip and drive to a dealer to fix. Some even carry a spare macerator with them, just in case. We chose to go with the full service gravity drain option, as in the link, even though it was a lot more work.
Thanks. Honestly though, I personally know my limits and that mod although the best option is outside of my level of expertise. I might go and speak with my RV Tech and see if he would be willing to undertake such a mod. For sure we are an all liquid dumper. Thanks any way for confirming that my "cave man" solution would work in an emergency. Not looking forward to checking it out though.

I'll keep my fingers crossed on the MTBF on the macerator.

Best. Shorty (aka Shore-T) sends...
__________________
Best. Shorty (aka Shore-T) sends...

Blessed with way more than I deserve.
Shore-T is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2017, 03:38 PM   #6
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 7,581
Default

There are various things you can do easily that should increase the life of the macerator, which are discussed in detail in quite few places here and on other sites.

The Roadtrek pump is put in upside down, so if you get a pump seal leak, it will fill the housing between it and the motor, flooding the motor and killing it. Drilling a small hole, like the one that is at the top of the housing when upside down, in the housing will let any leak water out harmlessly.

Water can also get into the motor through the manual jam clear rod. It can be sealed better, or removed if you want, as you can still crawl under with a screwdriver to turn in. With all liquid, you likely never need to use it.

Be sure to stop the pump as soon as the pitch of the pump starts changing so it doesn't run dry.

After you dump, mix up a bit extra of your water and treatment for the black tank by about 1/2 gallon. Put it in the black tank as normal, but then go back and open the black valve to get the clean water and treatment into the pump and plumbing after the valve. This will really help keep the impeller clean, and also make it a lot more pleasant if the pump fails and you have to remove the cleanout plug to drain that area into a bucket to add your hose conversion.
booster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-28-2017, 02:12 AM   #7
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: CA
Posts: 1,605
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by booster View Post
We have never had a macerator failure, but many have, and I agree that not having an easy backup dump is a big downside, as it can end a trip or make for a costly trip and drive to a dealer to fix.
Do you know if these failures involve outright motor failure or whether it's from impeller damage from metal or plastic debris? Are these macerators propriety in design for the different builders or is it a generic device?
cruising7388 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-28-2017, 03:21 AM   #8
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 7,581
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by cruising7388 View Post
Do you know if these failures involve outright motor failure or whether it's from impeller damage from metal or plastic debris? Are these macerators propriety in design for the different builders or is it a generic device?
They are a generic Shurflo macerator same as for all the marine applications.

If you get water in it from a seal failure or splash that gets in the motor, it will be a corroded motor failure.

More of the failures appear to be because the impellers (flexible rubber vane impeller) fail. The cause of the failures is an oft discussed item, with no certain reason proved. My guess is that many get damage by debris or running dry for too long, but I also think that a lot of them are tearing off the vanes because they stick while sitting from "stuff" gluing the impeller blades to the housing. Some, I am sure just plain wear out.

The debris and running dry are obvious to prevent, as is the water into the motor which has already been discussed in the earlier post. Wearing out there isn't a lot you do about, but impeller kits are easily available and not too hard to install. That leaves the sticking impeller in the housing, and that is why in the previous post, I recommended the procedure to get clean water with digester into the pump by pulling the black valve to fill the area as the last thing done when dumping. It does seem to help those that had multiple torn off impellers way too often. We can tell by motor noise at initial start on ours if we put the water in the pump area on the previous dump.

Flojet also makes a similar macerator that in the past had a lot of issues, but now seems to be better than it was. Hard to tell which lasts longer in a Roadtrek.
booster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-28-2017, 04:02 AM   #9
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: CA
Posts: 1,605
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by booster View Post
They are a generic Shurflo macerator same as for all the marine applications.

If you get water in it from a seal failure or splash that gets in the motor, it will be a corroded motor failure.

More of the failures appear to be because the impellers (flexible rubber vane impeller) fail. The cause of the failures is an oft discussed item, with no certain reason proved. My guess is that many get damage by debris or running dry for too long, but I also think that a lot of them are tearing off the vanes because they stick while sitting from "stuff" gluing the impeller blades to the housing. Some, I am sure just plain wear out.

The debris and running dry are obvious to prevent, as is the water into the motor which has already been discussed in the earlier post. Wearing out there isn't a lot you do about, but impeller kits are easily available and not too hard to install. That leaves the sticking impeller in the housing, and that is why in the previous post, I recommended the procedure to get clean water with digester into the pump by pulling the black valve to fill the area as the last thing done when dumping. It does seem to help those that had multiple torn off impellers way too often. We can tell by motor noise at initial start on ours if we put the water in the pump area on the previous dump.

Flojet also makes a similar macerator that in the past had a lot of issues, but now seems to be better than it was. Hard to tell which lasts longer in a Roadtrek.
Great info and explanation. Thank you!
cruising7388 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-28-2017, 09:24 PM   #10
Gold Member
 
Shore-T's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Rocket City, Alabama
Posts: 77
Default

Attached please find what I will consider my final version of the emergency sewer dump cap. I am not fond of running without redundancy on critical vehicle systems. That is why I carry spare fan belts and other small parts that if they fail can cause issues on your trip.

With that framework in mind, I wanted to develop a quick, easy and cost effective way to mitigate a potential macerator failure on the road. I realize the MTBF is very high on these units but none the less I want to be ready. This solution set is specific for our application in that we only produce liquid gray and black waste. That means no number two in the rig!

The hack involves three key components; a 2” DWV clean out plug ($1.10), a Rainbird ½” Slip X ¾” MHT Fitting ($1.54) and a screw on ¾” PVC cap ($1.44). Drill out the 2” clean out plug just shy of the diameter of the Rainbird fitting and cut down the length of the tube on the fitting as you see fit; attach with PVC adhesive. Viola!

Since you have a cap you can leave this clean out plug on until you repair or replace your macerator and you can continue on your way. Attach any standard garden hose and drain away. The only messy part is that when initially installing you must be ready to catch some draining that is in the line as it will flow out.

The draining won’t be as fast as with a standard sewer hose, but hey you’re on vacation. There are other more sexy solutions to mitigate a macerator problem but I am very well aware of my technical and mechanical limitations and will not cross them.

I’m painting my emergency dump cap red and storing it in the vehicle hose compartment. I hope I never have to use it! Sorry for the upside down pictures of the installed and capped clean out plug, I am stumped by that!?! The orientation is fine on my desk top but when I attach them they invert? Go figure. In the end I think I satisfied my three goals of finding a quick, easy and cost effective solution set. Feel free to share, enhance modify as needed.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Sewer Cap Drilled.jpg (79.2 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg Rainbird.jpg (81.3 KB, 5 views)
File Type: jpg Emergency Drain Port Installed.jpg (126.8 KB, 6 views)
File Type: jpg Emergency Drain Port Capped.jpg (91.6 KB, 5 views)
__________________

__________________
Best. Shorty (aka Shore-T) sends...

Blessed with way more than I deserve.
Shore-T is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

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 Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT. The time now is 05:55 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.