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 Campground Etiquette
 Campers, by and large, are a considerate lot. They’re planners, organizers, and have a healthy
respect for the environment and the wellness of others. There are countless stories of RVers within the community helping their fellow RVer when needed, or out of simple kindness. However, there are some things that facility own- ers who host RVs at their campgrounds, RV parks, or RV resorts feel would help everyone even more.
“Camping is a proximity thing.There’s not a lot of distance, so it deserves a different level of conduct,” explains Gary Becker, owner of Indigo Bluffs, Empire, Michigan. This conduct is directed at both your neighbors at the campground as well as the folks who operate it.
In recent years, there have been “flushable wipes” marketed to the general public – and campers have been a ready audience. The wipes are, after all, convenient. However, there
is a big problem with the so-called flushable wipes currently available.
First, they aren’t truly biodegradable. They do not disintegrate upon water contact. This turns into a significant issue for campground septic systems,
as the collection of wipes from all
the RV septic tanks add up to big
wads and tangled messes that clog septic pipes and burn out lift pumps, necessitating costly repairs. This isn’t the fault of RVing consumers, but rather manufacturers “have created a false sense of security that this is okay,” explains Becker, who just completed a repair that cost several thousand dollars. And what did they find? Lots of wipes. But it’s not just wipes. “Something many RVers may not think of as important
but really is would be toilet tissue,” explains Mary Pouliot, VP of Sales
& Marketing The Americas, Thetford Corporation, Norcold Inc. “Many RVers avoid buying special RV toilet paper and opt for their regular household toilet paper brand. Using these household brands can cause their RV toilet to clog as well as create backups in the sewer. Instead, RVers should opt for special- made RV toilet paper, that are made specifically for RV use and created to be septic and holding tank safe as well as
biodegradable, unlike regular household brand toilet papers.”
As with food, it’s important to check the label of any products you plan to use inside or outside your RV. Look
for products that are environmentally friendly and don’t contain toxic chemicals. One example are additives RVers can add to their holding tanks. Some of these “pods” contain the toxic chemical formaldehyde. “We don’t want the water dispensed into the drain
field to be toxic,” explains Becker. “Campgrounds can’t process wastewater like wastewater treatment plants. It’s important to read the label and be a conscientious consumer. It’s shocking that this stuff is allowed. We need to be mindful to make things better.” Reading the label also applies to other cleaning products. “The most important thing RVers can do to make RVing cleaner and more convenient is to make sure they are using the right cleaners on their RV surfaces. This will not only make their RV cleaner but also keep it in a good condition,” explains Pouliot.

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