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What kind of TP in your RV?

Here’s the typical blurb used by RV toilet paper pushers:

“Enjoy luxurious 2-ply comfort in an RV toilet paper that dissolves rapidly to help prevent clogs. Soft, snowy white XYZ Brand is highly absorbent and 100% biodegradable. Two-ply, yet it breaks up fast to make emptying your holding tank easier.”

Just what the doctor ordered for your RV holding tank, right? Until you get down to the bottom line price: Roughly $2.00 a roll for that soft, luxurious feel that won’t clog your tank.

It’s a question that many new RVers ask: Do I really need to use “RV” toilet paper? Perhaps those that have first tried “non-RV paper” are tossing and turning on their beds, visions of seven-headed wild beast-like clogs churning under their bed.

tp test
‘Shaken, not stirred.’ R&T De Maris photo

Without meaning to create a stink, the simple answer is: Save your money. The greatest cause of clogged black water holding tanks doesn’t have to do with what kind of TP used, it’s how you use it. Here’s a simple test that many have employed over the years to verify holding tank suitability.

Take a jar, fill it with water. Put a couple of sheets of your favorite brand inside. Toss the lid on the jar, and do the James Bond Toilet Paper Martini Test: Shake it, don’t stir. After a a few seconds of rigorous agitation stop and examine the results. If the toilet paper has begun to disintegrate, it’s good enough for your RV holding tank.

The real trick to keeping your holding tank “clog free” is to make sure you flush with plenty of water, and don’t dump your tank until it is at least 3/4 full. Using too little water, or dumping “too soon” will not allow for a good flush out of the tank, running the risk of building up solids.

#nrv #rvt739 #rvt980

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Ed Dickens
5 months ago

The correct solution for us was to purchase and install a BIDET on our toilet. AMAZON has several which will work just fine. Result is plenty of water to help break up the solids and no worry about how much paper is dissolving or not. no dirty trash to dispose of either. Simply pat dry your precious derriere with a washable hand towel and done. It’s actually better for keeping clean down there too. Bonus is we’re saving trees too.

Cal
5 months ago
Reply to  Ed Dickens

Sorry to burst your bubble, but using TP doesn’t “save “ trees. Trees used in any form of paper are grown in managed areas of the Southern forest and aren’t the tall majestic wonders of the forest we may have in our minds. 50+ years ago I had the same ideas when I entered SFASU forestry’s school. Slash Pine is a trashy “junk” tree that has no intrinsic value.
Also like many crops (and they are a crop) they are sustainable!
Paper unlike plastic is a renewable resource!

Gary
5 months ago

Article is 1.5 years old. Nothing has changed.

Impavid
5 months ago

37 years of RVing using Purex in Canada and Quilted Northern in the U.S. I have never had a problem with clogs. I use no chemicals but do add two tablespoons of enzyme once each year and never have an odor issue.

Bill
5 months ago

We have been all over Mexico in our rig. You can’t flush TP anywhere in MX, it goes in a can. We got used to putting folded up TP in a little wastebasket and emptying it regularly. Keeps paper out of the tank – less chance of clogs.

Don
5 months ago
Reply to  Bill

Bingo! THIS is the only way to guarantee trouble-free black tank operation. We’ve been doing this for years, and have never had a single tank issue.

Michael Galvin, PhD
5 months ago
Reply to  Bill

Those who do this are sure that is why they have no clogs. Most of us use something like Happy Camper and have no clogs.
I use Scotts RV TP from Walmart.

Bob Palin
5 months ago

I’ve done exactly that shake test with my regular house TP and my RV TP, the RV kind disintegrated much more quickly and thoroughly.

Deborah Mason
5 months ago

We found no paper in the tank really extends the time we can stay put. With paper we got 4 days. With the paper going in a small trash can (emptied daily) we can get 10 days before we have to uproot & go dump. Discovered that the summer we lived on MIL’s property to care for her. We had electricity, access to good water, but nearest dump was 10 miles round trip.

We also found a covered trash can reeks, but an open one is almost odor free

Leonard Rempel
5 months ago
Reply to  Deborah Mason

YUK.

Andrea
5 months ago
Reply to  Deborah Mason

Tossing most paper into the trash is one of our techniques for eking out the 10 gallon capacity for the black tank in our 17′ TT. Potty wipes of course go in the trash too. I grew up with usng the trash for paper in some places, so it doesn’t seem as yuck to me as it seems to be to some.
We often dry camp in one spot for 5-9 nights, with no chance of dumping. In one, the nearest dump station is 45 minutes away.

Bob p
5 months ago

I will add to this, don’t put facial tissue down the toilet IT DOESN’T dissolve. SIL had surgery and had a draining incision, he used tissues to clean the incision and dropped them down the toilet. At drain time he had a clog that took a couple of hours work to clean out using a drill and some stiff wire.

Don
1 year ago

We use a technique common in Europe, though it grosses out many US RV’ers. We use any TP we feel like, but we don’t put it down the toilet. It gets folded neatly and put into a trashbag-lined lidded can under the sink. Once the can is full, it goes out with the garbage. We just tell our guests that nothing goes into the toilet that they haven’t eaten or drunk.

Don
5 months ago
Reply to  Don

Yup!

Paul S Goldberg
1 year ago

We have used most any septic safe TP for the 8 years we have had our current coach. I do look at the tank gauge from time to time, but the plan is to empty the black tank every Saturday. If sitting in our home site using the stinky slinky I flush for 5 or 10 minutes after dumping. If using my macerator pump while on the road I close the grey tank on Friday and then after pumping out the black on Saturday I leave the valve open and open the grey valve to flow grey into the black. Close the grey valve and pump out the black again. Rinse and repeat. Done. Have not had a problem – yet!

Phil & Peggy
1 year ago

We’ve been full-timing for 19 years in the same Class C, using AngelSoft TP the whole time and never had any issues. Available at Walmart. Don’t need anything special. 19 years of testing!

Gloria SluderT
5 months ago
Reply to  Phil & Peggy

We use Angel soft plus I put chemicals in after every dump after it’s been flushed 1-2 times. Only dirty paper goes down, wet goes in basket.

Dr4Film
5 months ago
Reply to  Phil & Peggy

We have Full-Time for 14 years and Part-Time now for 6 years now using either Sam’s Club Member’s Mark or Costco Kirkland Brand toilet paper ALL the time. I won’t use anything else. Never any black tank problems EVER as we have established good black tank maintenance practices along with healthy hygiene practices. We also use Member’s Mark Flushable Wet Wipes that DO dissolve just not immediately. Our Magnum Opus toilet has three different water settings depending on our needs. We use setting #1 when traveling and dry camping to manage our fresh water supply. Then use setting #3 when hooked to shore services. Luckily our Monaco tanks were well built and installed which is also important to good tank management.

John
1 year ago

We purchased our Travel trailer a year ago and have been using Costco Kirkland brand toilet paper which states on the bag, ok for holding tanks. No issues, but I do wait until the black water tank is 3/4ths full and I flush the rank 3 times.

John
1 year ago

I almost always use my “Johnny Chock” and fill the black tank nearly to the brim, just before dumping it. Been doing fine keeping the tank clean.

Ed Fogle
5 months ago
Reply to  John

What’s a “Johnny Chock”?

Admin
RV Staff(@rvstaff)
5 months ago
Reply to  Ed Fogle

Hi, Ed. Sorry, I just found your comment in our Spam folder. Here’s the description of a Johnny Chock from its ad on Amazon: “Johnny Chock allows for the continuous flow of water to your holding tank through the unblocked chock. Also assists you when using various toilet rinse tubes to clean your holding tank. To use simply open toilet flush valve with hand or foot and place Johnny Chock in toilet bowl where it will keep valve open until you remove it.” Here’s the link to it on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3OBhAba I’ve never heard of it before (which means absolutely nothing), but when I Googled it, it looks like it’s sold all over. Have a great day. 😀 –Diane

David C
1 year ago

We’ve been using Costco toilet paper everyday for the past 3 years with absolutely no problems. Dump tank when full, use plenty of water.

Bill
1 year ago

The test above is the best way to check that what you are using is ok, but if it is marked “septic tank safe” it will probably work well.

DAVE TELENKO
1 year ago

I hope no one ever gets a “clogged up black tank” that has to be the worst thing that can happen, especially the part when YOU have to fix it cause it’s really really full! The only issue most if not all RV owners have are those in tank sensors that have their own mind about accuracy! My brand new, never used straight from the factory’s black tank read 3/4 full when I first checked it. Ok something is wrong, hook up the drain & sure enough, only the water I had put into it along with my happy camper treatment came out. Yup the dumb in tank gauge still read 3/4, even after back flushing! As far as toilet paper goes that’s a great article to test your TP & see if it starts to break up!
Snoopy

Dick & Sandy from near Buffalo, NY now in Florida
1 year ago

We custom ordered our 40 ft DP. Among other things it has a bath and a half. It is furnished with SEALAND VACUFLUSH marine style toilets. When flushing, the vacuum system forces what is in the toilet bowl through a 1 inch diameter hole with great force and instantly macerates any matter. This system does three things. (1) It essentially turns everything to a liquid, (2) it uses very little water and (3) it allows us to use standard 2 ply toilet paper.

This toilet system is not made for all RV applications as it has more components than a standard gravity toilet system. It requires more plumbing components, a vacuum tank and a vacuum pump system with various internal components. That means more weight and space needed than a standard gravity system. But it is what we wanted and works for us. Most people we know who have a standard gravity toilet system also use standard 2 ply toilet paper. Follow your toilets instructions and you can use standard 2 ply toilet paper.

Engineer
1 year ago

I buy Dometic 2ply RV/Marine toilet paper by the case…100 rolls at 77 cents a roll. Each case last 2+ years…..just load the coach for each trip with a dozen rolls.

Dr4Film
1 year ago

We have always used the same toilet paper and wipes in the RV as we do at home, Member’s Mark (Sam’s Club) or Kirkland’s Best (Costco). It’s been that way for the past 17 years we have owned the RV and never even come close to having a clog or problem with the black tank. Can’t say that for the grey tank. 2 years ago we were stationary for 6 months then left our Workamping location to return home. On our last overnight stop I went to dump tanks and NOTHING came out of the grey tank except for dribbles Turns out after disassembling the valves there were lots of greasy globs pulled out of the elbow just before the valve. Obviously with all of the driving there must have been lots of this stuff clinging to the sides of the tanks and the sloshing broke it loose. Plus the grey tank line is only 1 1/2 inch versus the black which is 3 inch. Would not have had a problem if they had installed a 3 inch line and valve in the grey tank. I now have a tank flush installed in the grey tank.

Lee Ensminger
1 year ago
Reply to  Dr4Film

That’s just one more reason I love our 2004 Travel Supreme DP…the black AND gray dump plumbing is large diameter. Plenty of flow when flushing with gray! On the other hand, our Koala TT has large black, small gray outlets. Probably saved them 13¢.

Gloria Sluder
5 months ago
Reply to  Dr4Film

In the gray tank we fill it half full then dump in some liquid dishwasher soap. Go to our next stop then open gray water value helps clean gray water take while driving.

Bill
1 year ago

After many trips to Mexico where you can’t flush TP anywhere, we stopped flushing it in the rig. It goes in the waste can and gets dumped in the trash. I just added a bidet unit for the upcoming trip to Florida.

wanderer
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill

This. Get a nice small covered trash can and a supply of liners for the bathroom. The tank can tolerate the occasional wad of paper (like let a guest use it normally), otherwise, try to keep the paper out of the tank.

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