Can You Clean an RV Toilet with Bleach?

Even with an RV, the cleaning chore is not left behind when you go on vacation. Keeping your RV nice and clean is a job for the whole family. All you have to do is be careful of the products you use

Can You Clean an RV Toilet with Bleach? The quick and simple answer is no. While the RV toilet bowl may be made of porcelain, it is still not a good idea to use bleach to clean the toilet. The reason for this is that bleach will harm the plastic holding tank underneath.

To find out more on how to clean your RV toilet just continue to read our article. It brings you the answers you need to the questions you may have about cleaning an RV toilet.

Can I Pour Bleach Down RV Toilet

No, you should not pour bleach down your RV toilet. Bleach has chlorine inside of it and chlorine is not good on a lot of materials, including plastic holding tanks. Besides damaging your tank and possible dumping system, bleach can ruin gaskets.

The bleach will dry out your gaskets and keep them from performing their duties correctly. This situation can cause you to spend a lot more money on repair costs than you anticipated.

Also, holding tanks use special enzymes to help break down waste and stops the odor from forming. Bleach kills these enzymes making it harder for you to dump your tank when it is full.

Can You Put Drano in an RV Toilet

Again you will have trouble if you use original Drano in your RV toilet. Drano is a caustic drain cleaner and it will damage your pipes, gaskets and holding tank. The same goes for the original RID-X product.

What you can do instead of using Drano or some other caustic cleaner is turn to boiling hot water. This will help break up any clogs you may have. Or you can turn to an enzyme based cleaner. These cleaners should not counteract the enzymes already in your holding tank.

Another option would be to use 3 Tablespoons of baking soda and 1.5 cups of vinegar. A final option would be to remove the P-trap and clean the clog by hand. Plungers may not work on all RV designs so be cautious if you think it is okay to do so.

Plungers and plumber snakes may cause damage to the pipes.

What Chemicals do You Put in the RV Toilet

There are probably too many chemical brands to list here. Suffice it to say that these RV toilet and holding tank friendly chemicals are available everywhere.

The ones you want to use are bacteria or enzyme based products. These cleaners work with the enzymes already in your holding tanks. You want to avoid chlorine, bleach and caustic solutions as these will harm your septic system.

Other options to avoid are home remedies. Most people concoct home made chemical solutions in an effort to save money. The problem here is that they may not be educated enough on the enzymes your holding tank uses to break down waste.

These home made remedies end up defeating the use of those enzymes and cause you a lot of damage. It is better to spend the money to get the proper chemicals for your holding tank.

The commercial RV chemicals come in liquid, tab and crystal formats and are very easy to use.

Can You Put Bleach in RV Holding Tank?

No. Every where we looked as we prepared this article spoke against using bleach in any amount. Now just because the experts do not like bleach does not mean other people have not had success with using that solution.

If you use bleach you are taking a big risk in destroying the very enzymes in your holding tank that work hard to break down waste and stop the foul odor from forming.

Instead of using bleach, a better cleaning alternative would be a bacteria or enzyme based RV cleaner. These cleaners are made specifically to handle the job that needs to be done in your black water holding tank.

Even small amounts of bleach can cause harm to your gaskets. Once they dry out, they cannot work as well as they used to. You may end up smelling your black water holding tank as you drive if you are not careful.

It is always best to err on the side of caution where your RV toilet and black water holding tank is concerned.

How Much Bleach to Sanitize RV Holding Tank

There are those RV users who swear by using a 1/4 cup of bleach for every 15 gallons of fresh water your holding tank holds. There is a process to follow to make sure all waterlines and drains are sanitized. This process includes shutting off your hot water heater and letting it cool first.

Then you are to open each faucet one at a time and let the water run for about a minute or until you can smell the chlorine. After this you top off the fresh water tank and let it sit for at least 3 hours. Once the time has expired, drain everything and continue to fill and drain til the chlorine smell is gone.

Instead of bleach, you can use Chlorinating Concentrate. One pound of this compound holds as much chlorine as 8 gallons of bleach. Also, it is safe to drink as only 1/2 teaspoon per 100 gallons is the same chlorine content as chlorinated city drinking water.

Some Final Comments

Except in systems where you do direct draining right away, it is not recommended that you use bleach to clean your RV toilet or black water holding tank. As good as bleach is at getting rid of germs, bacteria and other health issues, bleach is not good for an RV disposal system.

The bleach will kill the positive enzymes already in your holding tank making dumping more difficult. Plus, it will damage your gaskets and possibly the tank and your dumping system.

Also, do not turn to home remedies as these may be as dangerous as using bleach. Stick with the RV approved chemicals for toilets and holding tanks. That way you can enjoy your RV experience without spending extra money.

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