How to Conquer the Infamous Poop Pyramid in Your RV Black Tank


Ah, the dreaded scenario when the poop pyramid has taken hold, and there’s not a drop of liquid in sight! Brace yourselves, fellow adventurers, for this is where the battle becomes truly challenging. But fear not, intrepid travelers, for even in the face of such a mighty foe, there is hope! In this blog post, we will guide you through the humorous yet essential steps to conquer the infamous poop pyramid and keep your RV’s black tank in pristine condition.

The Importance of Keeping That Valve Closed

Don’t Let the Poop Pyramid Build Its Empire!

When a poop pyramid gets stuck without sufficient liquid, it can turn into a formidable adversary. It clings onto the walls of your black tank with the tenacity of a stubborn octopus and laughs in the face of your feeble attempts to dislodge it. It’s like a heavyweight champion refusing to budge from the ring, taunting you with its unyielding grip. But fear not, for the key to victory lies in the importance of keeping that valve closed. Treat it like the guardian of your RV’s digestive system, preventing unwanted blockages and ensuring a smooth passage for waste elimination.

The Magical Elixir: Water

A Preemptive Strike Against the Poop Pyramid

Now, let’s not forget the importance of adding water. Water is the unsung hero in this battle against the poop pyramid. It’s the magical elixir that keeps your black tank in balance, preventing those solid waste clumps from banding together and wreaking havoc. So, before you embark on your RVing adventures, make sure to fill your tank with 1-3 gallons of water. This initial water fill acts as a preemptive strike against the dreaded pyramid formation.

Conquering the Poop Pyramid: Step-by-Step Guide

Breaking Down the Enemy Brick by Brick

Keep your black holding tank valve closed at all times, except when dumping your tank. This simple rule prevents unwanted build-up and ensures a smooth dumping process.

Before using your black tank, fill it with 1-3 gallons of water. This initial water fill helps create a healthy environment for waste breakdown and prevents solids from sticking to the tank walls.

Add a high-quality bacteria + enzyme tank treatment before and after every tank dump. These treatments enhance waste decomposition and control odors effectively.

To block black tank odors from entering your living space, keep several inches of water in your toilet bowl while parked. This water barrier acts as a protective shield against unpleasant smells.

Use ample amounts of water when using the toilet. Fill the bowl with water before use and fully flush, holding the foot pedal for at least 10 seconds. Ample water assists in waste breakdown and prevents clogs.

Clean your RV toilets with RV-safe enzyme- and bacteria-based products. These cleaners effectively remove residue and maintain a sanitary toilet bowl.

Avoid using household disinfectants or antibacterial cleaners in your black tank. Products like bleach, Pine-Sol, or zinc-based cleaners can harm the tank’s beneficial bacteria and disrupt waste decomposition.

Dump your black holding tank every 3-5 days to prevent excessive build-up and potential blockages. Regular dumping ensures a healthy and functioning system.

Thoroughly flush your black tank for 20-30 minutes every 3-5 dumps. Utilize your built-in black tank flush or consider using an aftermarket tank rinsing wand or tank rinser for a comprehensive clean.

Keep your holding tanks under 85°F in hot weather whenever possible. Excessive heat can lead to unpleasant odors and affect waste decomposition.

Deep clean your black holding tanks with a specialized cleaner at the beginning and end of the season or every 3-4 months, depending on your camping frequency. This deep cleaning helps maintain optimal tank hygiene.

Never store your RV with waste in the tanks. Empty the tanks before storage, and utilize the time between camping trips to deep clean your tanks with a reliable tank maintenance product.


With these 12 rules and essential tips in your arsenal, you’re now equipped to conquer the notorious poop pyramid and keep your RV’s black tank in top shape. Remember, prevention is key, and a little care goes a long way in ensuring a pleasant and hassle-free RVing experience. So, embrace these practices, face the pyramid head-on, and bid farewell to unwelcome surprises during your travels. Happy camping!


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