Emptying the septic tank is one of the most delicate issues in RV life. First and foremost, when working with a sewer hose, you will want to have a good pair of gloves to protect you from contamination. This particular hose is used to empty the grey and black water tanks. And for those of you who are newcomers to the RV world, the grey water tank stores the used water from the shower, sink, and kitchen, and the black water tank stores the sewage waste. So don’t hesitate, and put those gloves on! You’ll want to make sure to screw the hose on correctly to avoid any spills, and be sure to begin with the black water tank first.
Check out our RV Sewer Hose Buyer’s Guide.
The idea here is that the black water will drain first and then be pushed along by the grey water afterward, which is much cleaner in comparison. There is a helpful attachment called a tank rinser which hooks between the hose and the RV tank. This piece also has a hookup for a freshwater hose, which allows you to shoot water into the tank, rinsing out both the tank and the hose afterward, maintaining the freshness of both, and preserving the longevity of your sewer hose. The attachment is clear so you can see if the grey water is starting to look clear as the tank gets clean. Another tip is to add a chemical to break down the waste; it makes the cleanup much easier!
It’s also important to keep the valves in the “off” position until the hose is properly attached. Don’t pull them too soon. This tends to be a mistake made by amateur RV travelers, and what a mess! Case in point: on one trip in Trailside RV Park, we witnessed some European first-time travelers accidentally pull the valve too soon! Cleanup on aisle 7! Don’t be that guy! Also, make sure your hose is long enough. Sometimes they are hard to attach to the dump hole, and having that extra length is helpful. You might also want to have something to weigh down that end of the hose, just in case it comes loose!
RV Sewer Hose Storage Options
In many RVs, the hose is stored in a long narrow compartment, which acts as the bumper at the back of the unit. This slinky hose slides inside and accordians itself down. Sometimes it’s also stored in a tube. An RV sewer hse storage can be purchased and attached under the RV. Depending on dump location, you might need some extra length of hose to reach the dump site. This is where you’ll need an extra sewer hose. But where to store it? Well you can build your own RV sewer hose storage and retrofit a square hollow fencepost, which can be bought at your local hardware store, and attach it to or underneath the vehicle. You could also create RV sewer hose storage out of PVC. Whatever method you choose for your RV sewer hose storage , just be sure to allow for drainage either by drilling holes in the tube, or in the cap at the end. This will also help with that special smell! Happy camping!