5 Tips For Cleaning Your RV’s Black Tank

How to clean rv black tank

When you’re living out of your RV, it’s easy to get lazy about keeping it clean. While you probably don’t think twice about cleaning up after dinner, when it comes to the black tank, you might be tempted to put it off until later. But cleaning your black tank regularly can help prevent problems like mold and mildew and also make sure that your system continues to function efficiently, so follow these five tips to learn how to clean RV black tank.

How to clean rv black tank

1) Dispose of anything solid

Solid waste in your black tank (i.e., fecal matter) creates a lot of gas and must be removed before it’s emptied. Scrape solid waste into a bucket or trash can and dispose of it with the regular garbage. Once you’re sure there is no more solid waste, flush as much water as possible into your black tank.

2) Add dish soap

The dish soap acts as a surfactant, which helps reduce surface tension, allowing liquid to be pushed through wastewater at a greater rate. The more surfactant you add, though, the easier it will be for you to push everything through your black tank and into your septic system. But dish soap can cause staining if it isn’t diluted enough. Use about 2 tablespoons of dish soap per gallon of water. You can also use other household products that act as surfactants such as laundry detergent or fabric softener sheets. And avoid using anything with bleach or ammonia, which can corrode pipes over time.

3) Add an additive

If you have a freshwater holding tank, add some salt to it and let it sit overnight. The following day, your black tank should be about half-full and ready for flushing. It’s not a bad idea to keep an additive like Rid-X in your black tank permanently so that even if you’re in an area without freshwater hookups you can still safely empty your waste tanks.

4) Add hot water

If you add hot water to your black tank, it will help to loosen things up a bit and make it easier for bacteria to break down your waste. If you don’t have hot water available in your water tank, consider hooking up a small electric heater or heating up some water on a portable stovetop. While it’s not required, adding heat will speed up the process and help you empty out your tank faster. It will also create a chemical reaction that helps release nasty odors.

5) Drain and repeat if necessary

If you need to flush your RV’s black tank and it isn’t yet empty, then drain and repeat. Doing so will help ensure that no urine is left in your holding tank, which would otherwise lead to unpleasant smells. The best way to do this is by slowly draining out some of your wastewater and replacing it with fresh water if needed.


In conclusion, the most important thing to keep in mind when cleaning your RV is to always use the right products according to your tank condition, and then follow the above mention method to properly clean RV black water tank. Never use any abrasive cleaner on the tanks. In addition to the risk of damaging the tanks, abrasive cleaners can also damage the water pump and other parts of the RV.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Mr RV Expert
Enable registration in settings - general