More than ten years ago, camping meant staying in a tent or a small trailer, and the greatest luxury was getting a good spot in a camp with a shared toilet. Today, you can go on a camping adventure with the RV that offers many comforts – from fully equipped kitchens and bedrooms with king-size beds to modern toilets that allow privacy as if you were home.
Because of this, camping has become even more popular. The fact that there is a fully functional toilet in RVs makes camping possible for many people who are dreaded by common restrooms in camps. Also, the fact that RVs with toilets are now available allows outdoor lovers to plan a trip much easier than before.
Toilets that are installed in RVs (Recreational vehicles) are categorized as cassette toilets. Most major camping equipment manufacturers offer many different models that can easily fit into any RV. Cassette toilets are high-quality, reliable, and functional systems.
However, they can also cause issues after some time. In the next lines, we will talk about Thetford cassette toilets, the potential issues that their users encounter and how to solve them.
What Is A Cassette Toilet?
The cassette toilet is an ordinary RV and motorhome toilet similar to the home one. However, below the floor level, it is connected to the black water tank instead of the sewage system. Thetford cassette toilet, especially the C2 model, which is the most popular, meets the needs necessary for a modern toilet.
In addition, since it is an integral part of thousands of motorhomes and RVs, when it has problems in operation, you can be sure that someone has already gone through the same thing. One of the most common problems with the Thetford C2 model is that the toilet cannot be flushed fully.
If you have a Dometic toilet, be sure to read 3 Most Common Dometic 310 Toilet Problems.
Thetford Toilet Problems
As we have already pointed out, toilets installed in motorhomes and RVs also face problems after some time, just like any other part you can find in your vehicle. In the next lines, we’ll cover the most common problems related to Thetford cassette toilets and how to solve them.
1. Toilet Flush Isn’t Working
The most common problem related to Thetford cassette toilets is that flushing does not work properly. That is not something that you can just wave your hand and deal with it later. But don’t worry; although this problem can have many causes, the most common is a faulty fuse that stops the flushing process. Note Thetford cassette toilet usually contains a 3A or 5A fuse.
Therefore, when you notice a problem with cassette toilet flushing, look for where the fuse is located inside your RV toilet, and check its condition. The fuse is usually placed in the main toilet tank. You must also know that even if the fuse looks new, there is a possibility that it is broken.
Remove the old fuse and insert the new ones. Most fuses are available in hardware stores and online, but if you can’t find the right fuse in-store, call the manufacturer’s customer service, and you will get information on where to buy a new one. You must buy a fuse that exactly matches your cassette toilet system!
Just place the new fuse in the same place where you removed the faulty one from the system. If you get stuck or feel you are doing something wrong, find instructions for replacing the fuse in the manual you received when you purchased the toilet system or the RV.
If you replace the fuse and the flushing problem is still there, there is a good chance that something is wrong with the flushing pump, which can wear out over time. The pump is also easy to replace, just like the fuse.
2. Flush Button is Not Working
If you have checked that neither the fuse nor the pump is causing the flushing problem with your Thetford cassette toilet, the flush button may have stopped working. A note that the flush button is usually a very durable part of the system that rarely breaks down. However, that can sometimes be a problem. In any case, replace the flush button, which will solve your issue.
3. Problem With Toilet Valves
When, during flushing, the water does not flow at all or pours out in a full stream, as if you have splashed a whole bucket of water into the bowl at once, a bad valve may cause a problem in the operation of the cassette toilet. You can only check if this is the case if you first empty the tank. Be sure to do this so that water from the toilet does not spill on you or the RV floor.
Once the tank is empty, wear protective gloves and inspect the pipes and valves. Tighten each screw by using the screwdriver. Ensure the pipes are in good condition, i.e., they are not bent. If any pipe is damaged or bent, it needs replacement. Once you’ve gone through the entire system, fill the tank and see if you can flush.
4. The Cassette Toilet Is Faulty
If you have checked everything we mentioned above, and the toilet still has difficulties in operation, it is time to seek help from the manufacturer, in this case, Thetford. Contact Thetford customer service, and explain your problem. You may be lucky, and the technician on the other end of the line can suggest a solution specific to your situation.
Even if it doesn’t, the manufacturer’s customer service will be able to help you in other ways. You can get a Thetford technician to come to you and look at the toilet. Also, if the toilet in your RV is still under warranty, you have a good chance that you won’t even have to pay for such a visit and the technician’s work.
Note, if your RV toilet is under warranty, if an authorized professional does not repair the toilet, there is a possibility of getting a completely new toilet.
But if the conclusion after contacting the manufacturer is that the cassette toilet in your RV is irretrievably broken and your warranty has expired, it’s time to buy a new one. In this case, be especially careful when choosing a model. Pay attention to what caused the problems with your old toilet so that the story does not repeat itself.
5. Issue With The Clogged Toilet
There is nothing more unpleasant than a clogged toilet. In RVs, such an experience is even worse, considering that it is a small space where it is not unusual for the toilet door to be located next to the dinette. That is why you must always be prepared for a potential clog.
The best option to solve this issue is to use a spray that has high pressure, with the help of whose jet you will quickly and efficiently break up the clog in your toilet. Another equally favorable solution is to pour very hot water into the toilet valve.
When the toilet becomes clogged, drain the water from the valve into the bucket and splash it into the toilet. It is very important to prevent clogs. Therefore, buy the proper toilet paper when using the toilets in RVs. Ordinary toilet paper often causes the clogging of cassette toilets.
6. Weak Connection Between The Bowl And Black Water Cassettes
Each cassette toilet is connected to a black tank with a strong seal that should not leak if properly installed. However, the seal may loosen for some reason. A few drops should not worry you.
However, if you notice a leak and unpleasant smell, you can count on the fact that you are dealing with dirty water, and the problem must be solved immediately.
Carefully inspect the seal between the external toilet structure and the black tank. Patch cracks and gaps with suitable material and strengthen the seal ring.
Also, check the condition of the PVC grooves. If one is worn out, replace it with a new one. To completely stop the leakage, additionally, inspect the cassette rubber packing. It often happens that it simply moves out of place. If the rubber is damaged, you must buy a new cassette. Unfortunately, this is the only solution.
7. After You Flush The Toilet Water Continues To Run
A big problem related to Thetford toilets can be when the water from the toilet tank does not stop leaking after you flush it. This way, all the water from your water tank is used unnecessarily. This is not good because you will use up all the water in your RV.
There are two most common causes of this problem. Either something is blocking the anti-siphon valve, or too much rinse aid is being used, which has clogged it. In both cases, the difficulty in operating the cassette toilet can be removed by rinsing the bowl well with several buckets of hot water.
Hot water will probably eliminate the problem. However, if this doesn’t work, you will have to disassemble the anti-siphon valve and clean it manually. If cleaning does not help, you have no choice but to buy a new valve.
8. Thetford Fill Level Indicator Doesn’t Work
When there is no filing level indicator on display, it is a sign that something is wrong with the cassette float. You have to react immediately to prevent the cassette from overflowing! No matter how much water you have, empty the cassettes as soon as possible and clean the float well.
However, do not use a strong stream of water from the hose, as this can damage the float. Instead, fill the cassettes with water and cleaning agent, close them tightly and shake them.
If you want to avoid problems with your RV toilet, watch this Thetford cassette toilet maintenance video:
If you own an RV with a toilet, we recommend watching How To Clean An RV Toilet? Expert Explains.
Thetford cassette toilets for RVs are quite simple systems that will serve you well for a long time. Although they can sometimes cause problems, you don’t have to worry. They are quite easy to repair.
Vital parts of the system are replaceable with new ones, and you can do most of the repairs yourself. We believe that the methods we mentioned in this article will help you when troubleshooting the Thetford cassette toilet.