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Old 02-27-2019, 07:27 PM   #1
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Default Smell......

Just within the last few days we've started to get a smell inside our 97PW. To my nose (!) it doesn't smell like blackwater tank. It has more of a rotten food smell. RV has been cleaned since our last trip so we know there's no food lying around decomposing.I can't pinpoint a source. Close smell of toilet and sinks don't reveal any stronger smell at those points.

So I'm wondering, is the black vent valve under the bath sink a usual suspect in this situation? And, if so, is a orange box store replacement as good as any you get from camper supply outlets?

Any advice greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-27-2019, 07:28 PM   #2
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Dead rodent?
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Old 02-27-2019, 09:08 PM   #3
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I know you said you cleaned, but what happens when you crack open the fridge?

Also, a small leak that keeps an area damp can develop a "dirty socks" smell. Check around for damp areas and maybe use a desiccant or dehumidifier for a few days.

Dry p-trap on one of the sinks?
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Old 02-27-2019, 09:13 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GallenH View Post
Just within the last few days we've started to get a smell inside our 97PW. To my nose (!) it doesn't smell like blackwater tank. It has more of a rotten food smell. RV has been cleaned since our last trip so we know there's no food lying around decomposing.I can't pinpoint a source. Close smell of toilet and sinks don't reveal any stronger smell at those points.

So I'm wondering, is the black vent valve under the bath sink a usual suspect in this situation? And, if so, is a orange box store replacement as good as any you get from camper supply outlets?

Any advice greatly appreciated.
You could put a plastic bag over the vent valve you mention with a rubber band and see if that helps with the odor before buying another one.
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Old 02-27-2019, 09:53 PM   #5
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Great ideas (well I like avanti's the least for obvious reasons). I went out and put some water down the sinks to insure the p-traps are primed. Tomorrow morning I'll check the smell. If it's still there I'll bag the sink vent.

Thanks!
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Old 02-28-2019, 01:07 AM   #6
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I have those ventless sink traps in my B except one and that is the bathroom floor drain. They dry out if you don't shower in your bathroom much and especially in the mountains they slosh out and have to be filled periodically.

But if you have a dead rodent, in the campground we are at today, Organ Pipe Cactus NM, they advise you to keep your hood up because desert rodents don't like the light and won't nest in your engine compartment.
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Old 02-28-2019, 03:19 AM   #7
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Davydd: Nice campground. There are a few good hikes. Did the ones across the street in the Ajo mountains. And the Desert View one near the campground. This time of year and with the rains you should be seeing good wildflowers. Enjoy.
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Old 02-28-2019, 11:58 AM   #8
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General suggestion -- make sure you keep a selection of battery-operated water detectors distributed throughout your van. And keep their batteries up-to-date.

We've had enough slow-leak events over the past 4 years that I wouldn't be without these. One leak from the roof, one leak from a PEX connection that came loose, excess sweat from sudden wild temperature changes in the deep south (interior fresh water tank sweats), drips from the fridge because I forgot to empty the freezer pan after switching it off and melting the frost accumulation. And one other leak from the toilet water feed line.

The basic detectors can be bought, for instance, in a 3-pack for about 20 bucks. They work. Take a wet piece of paper towel and touch it to the detector points to test them. The detector ends have adhesive pads to stick to the floor under the cabinetry and in void spaces so they won't roll around.

Slow-leak events, if not caught early, can sometimes lead to odors like something is rotting. I'm not sure that this is the OP's issue here, but it's worth saying anyway.
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Old 03-01-2019, 03:08 AM   #9
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OK. I think that I lucked out. I poured about a cup of water down each sink last night and this morning the smell was not there. Curious. Because one of the things that I do when dumping/cleaning at home is to put a hose under pressure at the drain of each of the sinks and the shower and open the ball valve on the hose, resulting in a burst of water. I wouldn't have thought them to have been dried out but maybe the inertia of the force left the p-trap short on water. Anyways, problem seems to be solved.

So another question. If it was gas leaking up from the grey water.......that's one smelly grey water tank. Do you people clean your grey water tanks periodically and how. I use one of those hose "sticks" through the toilet to clean the black each time but have done nothing to the grey.

Thanks again for your help.
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Old 03-01-2019, 03:26 AM   #10
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I recall prior posts on really smelly gray tanks either on this or airforums. Not a problem I've had, probably due to the fact we do the "paper plates & plastic forks" routine so no food or grease down the drains. Only hand wash and bath soapy water.
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