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Sunday, December 13, 2015

RV Toilet Paper or "Septic Safe" Home Toilet Paper?

Above, the bathroom to my Winnebago. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

There is a debate (somewhat) between RV owners concerning, of all things, usage of non-RV toilet paper in RVs. Sounds romantic, eh?

Up until this year, I have always heard and, also, according to owner's manuals on the 1990 Gulfstream Conquest micro-mini motorhome I had 25 years ago any my current 2015 Winnebago Minnie Winnie motorhome, that special dissolving toilet paper made for RVs and boats with black water tanks are to be used along with chemicals. Keep in mind when it concerns Winnebago, they manufacture their own holding tanks. They don't buy them from vendors.

(Note to the uninitiated to recreational vehicles: RVs have three tanks, a fresh water tank, a grey water tank (for dishwater, sinks and shower) and a black water tank (everything from the toilet).)

There are some in different RV-related forums, who say this is all bunk, and that normal household toilet paper can be used in RVs and boats as long as the package states it is "septic safe". Some even go so far as to say that chemicals (that break down organic waste in black water tanks) aren't needed.

I really don't know who is right, but it is my gut feeling that one should go with what the RV manufacturer recommends in their owner's manuals. When in doubt, go with what the "bible" says.

I would also contend, if someone doesn't use what the manufacturer recommends and they run into a problem with their black water tank (and the sensors for monitoring the tank's level), the manufacturer can reject any warranty claim on that basis. ("Sorry, it's your problem, you didn't follow the owner's manual's directions!")

Maybe someone can organize a debate in a RV forum's chat room on this.

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