Monday, September 25, 2023


My two favorite black tank dumpin’ gadgets

By Tony Barthel
Dealing with the black tank is one of the least enjoyable parts of the RV lifestyle. When a product comes along that makes the process even a little bit friendlier, I’m in. As such, two Camco products have really made my black tank dealings less miserable and have taken some of the frustration out of parts of this process. 

RhinoFLEX RV Sewer Fitting Wrench Set

The first is the RhinoFLEX RV Sewer Fitting Wrench Set. Essentially this is simply a two-piece plastic wrench that goes around your sewer hose fitting and provides enough leverage to make sure that it locks properly in place. 

Using the two handles on the sewer fitting wrench, you grab the sewer hose where it comes together and use this product to lock it in place. I have found a wee bit of bar soap on the fittings also helps to encourage these pieces to come together without gumming them up nor causing any other damage. 

Camco sewer hose wrench

Bending over and trying to convince two pieces of a sewer hose to lock in place is not how I want to spend my last day at camp and the darned hose always seems more reticent if the night before was spent with friends around the campfire who share my love of craft beer and feel that I should try all the varieties that were brought. 

Rather than practicing the words my mother warned me not to say, this simple two-piece wrench snicks the hose fittings together so I don’t have a larger issue to deal with.

You can buy one for yourself here

Camco RhinoFLEX six-in-one sewer cleanout plug wrench

The second is the Camco RhinoFLEX six-in-one sewer cleanout plug wrench. This is another simple plastic wrench but is designed to convince the sewer cap at the campground that you really do mean business. Essentially it has six different fittings molded into the ends of the wrench enabling you to open sewer caps of all sizes. 

Camco sewer wrench

I have found that sand and other grit gets into these sewer caps and while a plumber’s wrench would certainly get this job done, this simple lightweight Camco wrench does just fine and doesn’t weigh down the black tank tote in my camper by much. This is one of those tools that I use very infrequently, but when I need it I am thrilled that it’s aboard. 

I was recently teaching an RV 101 class at Clear Lake Campground and loaned my sewer fitting wrench set to a fellow camper. She had had trouble getting the two lengths of her sewer hose to seat well, which had resulted in one of those situations you don’t want on YouTube. These simple plastic wrenches got the job done and she was a happy camper with zero unfortunate spills. 

Since the wrench set is so lightweight, it doesn’t add much weight to your sewer contraption box, but it certainly does the job well and is quite handy. 

It’s also clear that the folks at Camco are either avid RVers or are listening to RVers, as these simple, lightweight but very usable tools are just a few of the things I have in my RV from Camco that just make the whole experience a little bit more pleasant. I also feel a little bit better about buying them since they’re made in the USA. 

You can get one of these wrenches here.


Tony Barthel has been a life-long RV enthusiast and travels part-time with his wife where they also produce a podcast, write about RVs and love the RV lifestyle.


  1. These seem to be useful tools, but in 25+ years of rv’ing I’ve only had one sewer cap stuck beyond hand tight. I found two hefty twigs nearby maybe 1/2″ thick by 18″ or so, placed each one on either side of the square cap and squeezed them together from each end. The 18″ of leverage (really 9″ on each side) gave me enough to open the cap. And, there was the campfire’s first kindling!

  2. For people who have sewer hoses difficult to twist off/on- buy the new Thetford Titan It has an oversized coupler that’s very easy to grip and a high quality hose as well. I bought it for my daughter- we both struggled with the Valterra ones and when the wire broke through the hose that was enough….off to the garbage.

  3. I have a Fram oil filter wrench that does triple duty. It looses my oil filter, the filter cans on our water filters plus locking and loosing my sewer hoses. Only need to carry one wrench.

  4. I bought that hose wrench and threw it away shortly after. I found it clumsy and not very effective. I now have an oil filter wrench that is like a large pliers that is easy to grip onto the connector ring and provides plenty of leverage. I don’t need it often, but when I do it works fast and easy.

  5. I have both of these tools. The square cap wrench is okay, but the hose wrench will not work on my hose fittings. Before buying, check that your fitting will work with the wrench. Like some others, I found an oil filter wrench fits almost anything.

  6. Just ordered the 6 in one cleanout wrench. After 20 years of RVing during which I have gotten out a plumbers tool a few times to extract a sewer cap I ran into a cap with an indented slot! I was able to extract it using just my fingers, but the tool would have made it easier. For less than $8 I have a place for it in my sewer tool kit. It will also help keep my fingers away from the cap, maybe.

  7. I carry way too many tools , including drills , sockets , pliers ,terminals , bungees, tyewraps , tape etc , so i find these USELESS but that is only ME !
    others are different and if it helps them then its great
    and they wont rust if they are thrown in the rv metal box …

    • I agree. Never had an issue easily connecting a sewer hose. It’s not like it requires 100 ft lbs to turn and lock.

      The sewer caps sometimes are tight and that tool looks good, but if one already carries a few wrenches that are good for multiple purposes, it’s not needed.

      When adding tools, I like to select ones that are multi-function as much as possible. Keeps the clutter and weight down.

  8. The sewer hose wrenches do help when there is the occasional need. I do have large water pump plyers for the campground cap (when needed). Many campgrounds are now using the spring loaded caps that solves that issue, though. Only one note about safety. Please bring/use disposable hand protection/gloves! Remember, take only pictures, and leave only footprints!
    Stay safe, healthy, and enjoy the great American outdoors!

  9. I have both of these. I was using the wrench to try to get the hose on the kitchen valve and broke it. They don’t fit really tight on any hoses I’ve tried but they do help some.

  10. In 12 years of RVing, I never had trouble twisting my Rhino Flex hose connector on to the RV. Just keep the connection clean. And OMG a pair of channel locks will unscrew that sewer cap, and they have a lot more uses than that sewer cap wrench that only fits one size sewer cap. Hell most sewer caps half the time, or gone. What a waste of money.

      • My first travel trailer, and we just tested it. Came home to test the drain hose directly into our septic tank. No problem getting it on, but getting it off, no way (standard Camco 20′ hose.) I’ll be definitely digging out the oil filter wrench, or buying a 5″ channel lock pliers- don’t think I’ve ever had one that big, despite having most tools.
        Anyway, the article and the discussion is very valuable to help avoid issues when out at a campsite…

    • Well, I am none of these things – millennial, weak nor unintelligent. But for any article I look at all campers of all ages and abilities and write to provide value to them. Not all products are for all individuals, of course. For example, some love camping in small vintage campers, other prefer big class-A pushers. When I showed this wrench set to a friend who I was camping with she thought it was the greatest thing she had seen and was very helpful for her. The lightweight nature and compact size made it perfect for her vintage camper.

      When we judge based on only our own circumstances and life experiences we miss that there are other views and experiences and abilities. And, when we point fingers it’s important to remember there are fingers pointing back at us for every one we point outward.

      • Thank you Tony for that reply! As a single senior female with arthritis in my hands I find it very difficult to get my sewer fittings in place. I have the ring wrench but I don’t really understand quite how to use it. The fitting on my class c is really low and close to the ground and hard to see as well. I would love to see a video on how to use it!

    • Your insulting comment was not necessary or mature, SDW. You sound more like a millennial in your comment. Why not keep it friendly and helpful?

    • Usually we mirror the way we feel about ourselves in our comments to others. It isn’t a stretch to understand this concept. The fruit that falls from the tree is a product of the tree. I know because I’m prone to make the same comments. I think my tough approach is best. Been working on it, but this tree had been growing in “that” for a while. Well see how it goes. Good luck all. The nice thing about Rving is that you learn so much.

    • Your insults are nothing short of ignorant. While I agree there are many tools that can do the “job” for those people with diminished strength in their hands due to aging etc these tools can be very helpful.

    • Let’s agree to disagree. I have every tool known to man (according to my DW). But sometimes people don’t have all these tools and these simple wrenches may allow someone to continue to camp. So I’m glad you don’t need them but kudos to anyone who needs them to keep going.

    • Maybe that’s because your connectors are old and easy to unsnap. The newer ones snap crazy tight and then are very difficult to undo.

      The wrench stays in the stinky sewer hatch, I don’t want my clean channellock anywhere near a sewer pipe. p.s. it’s not the cap that’s the problem. Its when your cone fitting won’t come loose from the pipe that you need the larger end, working from inside.

      If you don’t need them, don’t buy them, but they are godsend for some of us. My only complaint is when a pipe is ‘sunk’ the flat wrench can’t get in there.

    • They couldn’t make twice the profit if it was just one wrench. I just carry a standard adjustable water pump style pliers, never had a fitting they wouldn’t work on

      • That’s what I told him. And like I said in my comment. Most of the time there’s not even a cover on the sewer pipe because no one wants to touch it to put it back on.


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