I am new to houseboating. Our boat, a 1976 Kayot, has a 150
gallon waste holding tank (no grey water tank). Pump outs for
the boat are rather expensive on our lake and at times difficult
due to the marina conditions and services at the marina. For
these reasons I try to go as long as possible between needing pump
outs. Here are my questions:
1. As long as my treatment chemicals are maintained in the
hold tank, is it OK to go months (say 3-5 months) between pump
outs? Are there long term concerns? Or, regardless how
full the tank is, should it be pumped out at some regular minimal
2. If it is OK to go a long time between pump
outs, is there anything special I should do when I do get the tank
pumped out. IE. any treatment or "flushing" type chemicals I should
run through the system while getting it all pumped out?
I have a Myacht and the tank is a section of the pontoon. 100 + gal they say.
In response to your question. You can hold off pumping until you can't stand the smell. Depending on the chemical you use will determine this. We would pump every 4 or 5 weeks. We used K.O. Brand which was expensive but worked very well. Last summer we used the blue stuff for boats. I guess it worked as well but since our vent is on the roof maybe we just didn't notice the smell.
I was told once a tankfull starts to go sour more chemical won't help. The blue stuff has a perfume in it and I think if you add more you will mask more.
The K.O. Bacteria or enzyme (i get them confused) is supposed to work the best if you can keep enough air going through your tank.
I am seting up a park model RV and plan on only pumping every 6 weeks, or longer if I can get away with it. I will start out with the blue stuff and if it doesn't last I will try the expensive K.O. and run more air through the tank.
When a holding tank is part of a toon it stays cooler in the water and lasts longer, I think.
1. Yes, provided you use a tank treatment *as directed.* (Iow, read
the instructions on the bottle and follow 'em.) The two best are
Raritan K.O. (live bacteria, not enzymes) and Odorlos
http://www.odorlos.com Both, are organic products that do not
contain toxic chemicals....whereas the active ingredient in all the
"blue stuff," is either formaldehyde, gluteraldehyde or quatenary
amonium compounds, all of which are lethal.
2. No...but the tank should be at least nominally rinsed after each
pumpout--and THOROUGHLY rinsed 2-3x/year to flush out sludge
accumulation. That's done by putting enough water into the tank via
the pumpout fitting--'cuz that sends the water into the tank at the
bottom to stir up sludge and hold it in suspension so it can be
pumped out--to cover the bottom to a few inches. Pump that
out...repeat at least once. A thorough flush requires repeating
till only clean water is being pumped out.
Peggie Hall, Moderator Specializing in marine sanitation since 1987, Author: "Get Rid of Boat Odors--A Guide to Marine Sanitation Systems and Other Sources of Aggravation and Odor." [L=http://shop.sailboatowners.com/books/detail-books.htm?sku=66438&cat=1304[/L]