Wednesday, April 25, 2012

When Do You Pull The Valve??

When we are parked for any length of time, I always keep my waste tanks closed. On my unit we have three tanks, one for the kitchen, gray water and of course the ever so popular black water tank. The average RV normally has just two tanks, the gray and black.

Our stay here in Dickinson I noticed our neighbor's trailer. He has both drain valves open. I thought this was very strange. For the experienced Rver they would know to keep the black water tank closed. I had the opportunity to talk to him about his black water valve being open and he said that he has no problem with it and all that he does is flush the tank once in awhile.

To the novice Rver you may think "What's wrong with the black tank being open?" Lets start with the toilet and how it works. You do your business and push a lever. Done deal. This is correct but the novice is thinking it works just like at home. No it doesn't. Your Rv toilet is a gravity type toilet. This means that your business when flushed falls into the black tank via gravity. This is quite different from the house toilet which uses a gallon or so of water and pressure to send your business down to the sewer pipe.

Now think about it; You leave the black water tank open and when you flush, the solids will stay in the tank, start to build a pyrmid while the water will drain. Your black water tank acts like a mini septic system. The water being in the tank will help desolve the solids into liquid. To the new to Rvers out there "ALWAYS KEEP THE BLACK WATER VALVE CLOSED."

In some circles, you may research that it may be a good idea to keep the gray water tank open. Not a bad idea but it all depends what's going into that tank. If your kitchen sink drains into it then I would suggest keeping it closed. This may help with the small food particles that flow down the drain after doing the dishes.

Do you place toilet paper (TP) down the toilet? Some do and some don't. We do. We use White Cloud from Wal-Mart. We have used the TP for over two years now with no problems. It desolves in the water and very little clumping up to cause a plug.

If you feel comfortable using only the TP for Rv's then go for it I just don't like the price. You need to make sure that you use plenty of water when you flush, usually I count to five while flushing. So when do I "pull the valve to dump?"

I can use the panel and push a button that tells me when I am full or the best way to tell is when you flush the toilet and it gives you a little burp (air bubble). Now it's time to pull the valve and dump. My ten year old daughter even knows when daddy needs to pull the valve and dump. Well I hope that this gives you a little insight to your tanks underneith your trailer.

Until next time...................Be safe.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

"It Won't Happen To Me".....But It Did!

Who would have ever thought that something like this could ever happen to me?

When we left the gate, as I mentioned before, we went to Laredo for five days. We decided to splurge a little and go out for dinner a few times. Sherry never left the gate for fear of getting lost so Bri and I did all the running around, she deserved it.

The second night we were there we all went to Olive Garden for dinner and it was great. Sherry got her usual, Chicken Alfredo, Bri got her cheese pizza and I got this steak parmesan cheese thing. Everybody enjoyed their meal.

A few nights later we all went to a steak house that was recommended by some of the workers we talked to at the gate. It was called "The Texas Roadhouse". I don't remember what we all had but boy it sure was good. We all had our fill and decided to check out a few stores around the area before we went back to the park.

A day or two has pasted when I decided to check some emails and noticed that there was one from our bank. I opened it up, made sure it was from them and it said that there was some unusual activity on our account and it was frozen. I called them immediately to find out what the problem was.

The lady from the bank told me that someone made charges on our account from ITunes for $49.99, not once but twice. She also told me that it accured around two in the morning. We discussed the charges and told her that I was in bed at that time and the card was in my possession. She said that we were covered and not to worry because the bank would do an investigation and I would be getting my money back.

Upon further discussion with the bank I was told that I would be went paperwork that we needed to fill out, sign and send it back to them. In the mean time the money was credited back to our account and now everything is fine.

Sherry and I talked about how could have this happened. We discussed where we went and when we used the card. We determined that someone must have "swiped" our card in one of those card type readers at one of the restaurants that we visited. We don't know for sure but this was the only time that our card was not visible to us.

From now on when we decide to go out for dinner or anytime that we think the card will not be visible to us we bring cash to pay for it. Lucky for us that our bank took care of us and was watching our bank account and froze it when they did, we could be broke now.

Just when you think that it won't happen to you...................You better think again!

Until next time..................Be safe.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Baby Time!

We have arrived here in Dickinson, Texas last Friday. The park that we are staying at is all part of a major community. Our stay here is undetermined at this time. The baby appears to be doing fine and, to me, looks fine. She eats and sleeps most of the time so Sherry gets plenty of baby time.

Their middle child is Jordan. She is about one and a half years and is a handful. She is cute as a button and had soooo much energy. Where do these kids get it? It must be in the water.

Let me take you back to the gate. While we were there, the one thing that seemed to get talked about the most was this:

Well here it is a small barbecue. This is an actual Weber barbecue which will cook a package of hot dogs or a few small burgers. It won't handle a large steak but we know how to cook that and it won't be on this little thing.

You wouldn't believe how many people commented on this little thing. Someone even offered to buy it from us but I couldn't bare to sell it. You see Sherry bought it at a second hand store many years ago because she said it was "cute". Paid 12 bucks for it. When it came time to pack up to go full timing she brought it along, I just shook my head. We currently use it for an ash tray outside. It does have the grills for the food and charcoal and even tongs as well.

Until next time...................Be safe.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Bathroom Floor is Finished

Here is a quick update on what we are doing. We went to Laredo and stayed at a nice state park called Casa Blanca State Park. It was very reasonable and quiet. We stayed for five nights and left today heading towards the Houston area. We are currently staying at Goliad State Park and it too is reasonable and has pull through sites, what a blessing.

Now for the flooring with pictures. When I put in the in toilet flange I ripped out the carpet, knowing that I would be putting in the new flooring.

As you can see closely there were some water stains and the carpet was just terrible. I let it dry some and vacuumed up all the loose ends. I decided to leave the toilet in place and work around it with the flooring. The worst part of the job was behind the toilet with the vent hole and the water ling feeding the toilet, but at least the planks were only about 5 inches in width.

Well we are making progress. Laying the flooring around the toilet was a little bit more of a problem than I thought. One would think cutting around a round abject would be a no brainer but not so. The angles were a pain in the a**! But with a lot of mistakes and boards I was able to get it somewhat right.

Well after a lot of mis-cuts and wasted boards here is the final project. I think it looks great for my first time at laying flooring of this nature but the real test is that the wife said that a pro came in and did it. Thanks Hun!!

I have wanted to post this for a long time now and I am glad that I have been able to include pictures. I hope that you enjoy this and ....................

Until next time.................Be safe.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

We're Free, We're Free!!

What a crazy day, we are now in Laredo Texas 2 days ahead of schedule. Last Friday Chance our company's field service guy showed up at about 10:15am and said that they are closing our gate. I said you're kidding! How come? He didn't know why because we all thought that the other gate was going to close and we would still be here until Sunday and they would keep this gate opened. He called the FS again just to make sure and he said that it was this gate that is to be closed.

Sherry was just waking up and I told her that they are closing our gate. It didn't take her long to get dressed and to start packing things up. Chance and I started to get things in order outside. Sherry and I packed up the truck last night and we were ready with the truck. Who knew that we would be leaving the next day. Chance and I agreed that since no one is replacing us that we could take our time getting things in order.

It wasn't long that I had the truck hooked up to the trailer and I was pulling out to back myself out of the gate. There was no room to turn around and backing out is the only option. Sherry was behind me and I started to go and she directed me to the road and we were set.

One of the land owners showed up as soon as we were ready to leave and we said our good-byes. He was somewhat concerned what was going to happen with the gate and asked Chance what he was going to do. I don't know what was going to happen but we started on our way.

The truck seemed to be sluggish and I realized that I was driving with the e-brake on. Oh crap!! I drove about 8 miles with the brake on. I think I might have to have my son Chris take a look at and see what needs to be done if anything. I also have a miss in the engine and Chris said get it here and I will look at it. With this miss we will be using a lot of gas but I can't locate which cylinder it is. Chris has the tools necessary to figure out what the problem is. I called the park that we were suppose to go to on Sunday and ask if we could show up early and they said no problem. We showed up at about 1:30 and got our site and set up. It is a nice park with a lake and clean. The price is $18 a night for water and electric and $21 a night for full hook ups. They didn't have any full hook ups available but she said that we could move if one did come available. I don't think we will have a problem but if I need to dump we have the "Blue Boy" tank that I can dump in to and take it up to the dump station.

Now that we have a few extra days here, this gives us more time to look for the dresses for Sherry and Bri. I started to hook up the satellite dish and tried to get a signal. No luck! I called for assistance but no luck there either. I am sure that I am doing things right but no signal. The next day was real nice, we went to Wal-Mart so I can get a much needed hair cut while Sherry and Bri went shopping. We had lunch and went to a second hand store to start looking for the dresses. No luck there and off to Kohl's, no luck there either. Oh well I am not worried, we still have time before the wedding.

We still haven't heard anything about the baby so once again no news is good news. We will be leaving Laredo on Wednesday morning heading towards Dickinson, TX which is where my son lives. We plan to arrive there on Friday and will be staying there for some time. Sherry is very eager to see him and the babies. She keeps telling me that the babies NEED their MeMa, I have to agree with her on that one. She is very anxious to get there but is also relieved she is not staying up all night watching the gate.

I have a great internet signal here at the park so in the next couple of days I will post the pictures of the bathroom that I promised weeks ago.

Until next time.................Be safe.