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gene, RV Mechanic
Category: RV
Satisfied Customers: 1100
Experience:  28 yrs exp in the industry
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I have a 2011 Forest River Sunseeker 2300 CDS which was an

Customer Question

I have a 2011 Forest River Sunseeker 2300 CDS which was an ex Rental we purchased in the fall.
Now that it is no longer winterized; we are discovering all sorts of odd issues with leaks in the sewage system.
1 being the ball not sealing on the toilet - so I replaced both the ball gasket and the toilet (base) seal. It now works OK, provided we let the ball "slam" shut when flushing.
2. a urine smell started wafting out from under our dinette (the u shaped style); it turns out we have a drip from the black water tank, which is creeping down the length of the tank and into our storage bins - not sure if this is related to the gasket changes I did as the toilet is now working a bit loose - it appears that the lag bolt holes are a bit stripped
3. the ring on the toilet had a crack on one the the toilet bolts, but I wasn't too concerned as the gasket seems to seal things fine (perhaps the crack is bigger than I imagined?) It looks like someone over tightened it at some point
4. when using the Black water flush, we wound up with water on our bathroom floor and bathroom (external to the room) sink floor - perhaps a vacuum checkvalve issue?
Which leads me to a few Q's - do you know what the most common sources for leaks are for the black water? and if the toilet is a titch wobbly - would this lead to leaks? (It seems to be "leaking" though when the motorhome is sitting in storage, with the tanks apparently drained (an no one has used the toilet since).
Could the bwt flush vacuum check valve failing cause a leak?
Lastly, the grey and black water outlets/valves are so low; that the hose has to fight gravity out of the compartment to drain - which results in a terrible mess when done draining and disconnecting the hoses from the outlet - how can this be avoided?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: RV
Expert:  Randall replied 1 year ago.

What chemicals are you using now in the tanks? Can you attach a photo or two of the area you are referring to so I can take a look at it?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi; the chemical we are using is this: I have been an RV user for 15+ years. I do all my own home plumbing and 90% of my own RV Maintenance (including rebuilding my prior class C overhead bunk after a delamination and seam leak).I am not sure what area you are desiring photos of; as I had asked a number of Q's. (Sorry).The Grey and Black water tanks run the width of the RV; above a large storage bay. The Black Water Flush valve, looks similar to a city water connection, with a female hose end (and cap) above the sewer drainage compartment. The Toilet is a Porcelain Dometic Sealand 210 (not terribly impressed with this toilet - the flushing water does not circulate to clean the urine off the bowl - or at least no where near as effective as the Thetford we had in our Itasca Sunstar (2003).The Sewer drainage compartment is on the drivers rear, in a doored compartment. The valve assembly and outlet seem to be standard in every way, with the exception of it's height positioning in the compartment (it sits quite low, thus the accordion sewer hose cannot fully drain out and spills its nasty contents inside of the compartment when detached.) The only way I am aware of perhaps correcting this is to cut a hole in the compartment to allow the sewer drain hose to drop into it, so that we can let gravity do its part. There is a decent sized threaded cap in the floor of the compartment which looks like it could potentially be large enough to drop a hose though - but its diameter is just a bit smaller (about 1/2 inch) than a sewer hose without attachment pieces. The plastic compartment bottom is warped and uneven and this drain hole is sitting of course in a high point on that floor, thus nothing will drain out of that compartment, unless it is left open while driving.The Sewer leak seems to be a slow drip, which with the movement of the RV, travels in "trails" along the length of the black water tank to where ever the low point of the RV is (depends how it is sitting) and is making the entire RV smell like an outhouse.I am not 100% sure what else to tell you. I am just trying to understand what the most common points for leaking (the tanks look solid and intact; motor home overall is in excellent condition and was well maintained) that one could check into via the process of elimination (pardon the pun).1. Base seal (on the floor flange) of the toilet?
2. Vacuum Backflow prevention valve from the BWT flush outlet?
3. Connectors/lines rattling loose from the toilet flange and the black water tank?
4. Pex failing behind the toilet?
5. or is common for these tanks to crack and fail just through basic driving and simple use.We have only used the tank on a weekend and it was showing 10-15% full when this issue appeared; it wasn't anywhere near full at all (most of our use is Grey water).Regards,
Expert:  Randall replied 1 year ago.

I was hoping for some photos of where you thinj the leak was coming from.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have no idea whatsoever on where the leak is coming from. Barring trying to drop the Black water tank (as I think it MAY be coming from the upper part of it). All I have is the drip marks along the sides and surface of the tank; and pooling waste water in my compartments below it; depending on how the motor home it is sitting (ie lean).The only thing I am pretty sure on, is that it seems to be coming from the drivers side of the tank (I think).If a black water flush Vacuum valve is failing - would this result in an external leak? If a flange seal is not super solid (though the toilet is secured, it just wiggles a bit when sitting on it and seems to be working a bit looser over time) could this cause a tank to leak? any other things to look for when trying to source a leak?
Expert:  Randall replied 1 year ago.

From what you told me it does sound like the tank may have a leak and you are going to have to get up close to it to see where. That can be a chore. It isn't likely to be leaking from the top or anything having to do with the valve.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Um. ok. Thanks.I know it has a leak - I am trying to narrow down the source of that leak.I'll continue to work on it myself. Please - no need to respond any further. I have been able to find more information on the discussion forums on what to look for than in the time spent here.I can appreciate the difficulty of trying to narrow things down sight unseen. I was hoping from an RV Tech to try and get some feedback on how you would troubleshoot this type of issue if a unit was brought to you. I think I already know what I need to do, thus no point further discussing.Regards,
Expert:  Randall replied 1 year ago.

Kind of what I told you have to get to the tank and inspect it. There is no "one" place they all leak. In my shop we have to do it exactly the same way. Plan on about $300 or so for a tank plus some fittings and a messy job. We do these all the time. Good luck with your project!