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After a flush, the toilet opens but does not close. You can manually move the "blade" to the closed position by turning a knob located at the rear, but with the next flush the toilet again stays open. Anyone else go through this?

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Thanks.

Rookie mistake - it is a Thetford Model 19425 (as per vehicle data card) in an H/R. Toilet has two buttons at the top left corner, one to do a complete flush and the other to just add water. These functions work except it does not close after doing the flush. At the back, there is a loose black box about 4"X4"X1" into which a wiring harness plugs that might be the control.

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Hi ISM500,

Tetford toilets have a model name as well as the number. The number and function mentioned in your posts means it could be the Aria Classic or Deluxe. For the Classic, closing of the blade is powered by a spring. For the Deluxe, it looks like closing of the blade is controlled by a vacuum. The owner's manual can be downloaded by going to http://www.thetford.com/HOME/PARTS/Permane...63/Default.aspx and scrolling down to the bottom of the page. You'll need to determine which model you have and then work through the drawing and see which part is failing. Tetford's customer support is at 800-521-3032

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You need to print out an owner's manual from the manufacturer.

There is a fuse inline with the power to the commode, and that needs to be working.

On mine, if I push both buttons twice, it will open the valve and leave it open, for cleaning, whatever. In the next step, pushing only the large flush button returns it to "normal" operation.

On the lower right hand side of the bowl (facing the toilet) there is a switch that changes modes of the flush. There is a "residential" mode, that will open the valve and flush water into the bowl, then after a few seconds, close the valve and run enough water in to leave about 3" of water standing. The other switch setting is a "water saver" setting that only opens the valve and runs rinse water as long as the button is pushed. Release the button, and the valve closes and water flush stops.

The "brain" may be confused on yours. Steps I would try: 1. Push the large button once and see if it resets. 2. Push both buttons twice in succession, see if it stays open. 3. Cycle the switch on the back of the commode (behind on the right side). Try it one way then the other.

That is all I can suggest for now, after dealing with the commode for nearly two years. The seal and valve assembly is easily changed out, with complete instructions included with the kit. About $200 when that becomes necessary.

If I had a choice I would probably get a foot operated valve type of commode, with a china bowl and the quality this unit has. Foot operated would be quieter, use no electricity except to move water into the bowl, and if used carefully would probably be less maintenance. Replacing the electric mechanism once in seven years is not a real bad problem, but still..........

If these steps do not help, email me at jjgnn(at)Yahoo(dot)com and I will dig my manual out.

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You must have a Thetford! This started with me two years ago and I did everything to include removing the unit and ordering a repair kit from Thetford though you won't get much sympathy from them. I have researched this and suspect the real cause is the 'green board' behind the toilet which has a replacement cost more than the cost of a new mechanical flusher. It appears that problems don't begin until we've been on the road for a while when the condensation from the cool water in the commode comes in contact with the humid air in the coach. Condensation sets in and fouls the electronics and you end up on your side with a rachet turning the knob in the back until it opens the flapper. From there it works ok for a while and then back you go. If you have the money order a new toilet and have someone install it for you.

R Carey

2002 Diplomat

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I own a 2002 Windsor that previously had a Thetford ARIA toilet that was electric with the two buttons you had mentioned in your post. I had it for less than 6 years and had to replace the very expensive motor and seal too many times. I recently replaced the entire toilet with a Dometic Magnum Opus and have been very satisfied with its performance. It is extremely quiet versus the ARIA and the best part is the ability to adjust the amount of water that is used for each flush. When traveling or Boon-docking I can go well over a week without dumping my black tank whereas before it only lasted less then a week. I would definitely recommend the Magnum Opus over the ARIA any day of the week, the ARIA is a piece of JUNK!

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We've had similar problems with our Thetford. I can't quote the model information right now as we are not with the motor home. We have the same two button set-up so I believe it is the same model. Our problems are intermittent. It will work well for a while and then go through a period of time when it has to be manually closed. Our toilet seems to have a problem of the mechanical device that moves the blade getting slightly out of sync and opening too far and getting stuck. The manual wheel is difficult to move at first then is easy to spin. I give it several extra turns once it comes loose in an attempt to keep it from getting stuck open. After several tries, this seems to work.

We have also noted a connection between adding our granular tank treatment. If we aren't careful and get any of the granular material on the blade, we'll experience sticking open problems. These go away after a series of flushes. We routinely go almost two weeks between black tank flushes. Personally I like the toilet but it does have its hang ups!

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I second Jack Nichols' suggestion. Our coach was equipped with a Magnum Opus, which worked fine until the valve was compromised by an overly ambitious cleaning brush. I confess that when we bought the coach I had an "Oh oh!" moment as I realized there was a circuit board in the toilet. Sure enough, when the cleaning brush tweaked the mechanism, the flush valve wouldn't open electrically, but one could open it manually with a screwdriver. We then plunged into a world of expensive, hard-to-get parts and lack of expertise on how to repair this unit (and we were in a large city at the time). It was an adventure retrieving the technical info on circuit board switch settings and troubleshooting procedures. Bottom line: for about half the cost of repair parts and (unavailable) labor, or about half the cost for a replacement Magnum Opus toilet only, we installed a new unit with "manual" foot flush. Works reliably, parts and repair expertise available anywhere - no small comfort as we're midway through a 6 month trip.

Stan4d

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The toilet you have is an Aria I or Aria II. The easy way to tell is the color of the buttons. I think you have the Aria I because of the year. 1st try unplugging the power to the unit and then plug back in. See if that clears the brain. The knob is a tricky thing also. You want to adj it st that it just closes. They are touchy & a little is a lot with them. The last resort is to replace the blade valve itself. They come with the motor made inside. So you replace both in one step. The package comes with the instructions for the repair. The OEM part number is 19613 and cost around $190. I have done several of them and usually takes me around 30 - 45 mins. Depends on the toilet location. You can go to my site & order it online or from any RV supplier. For my site use my user name & the dot com. There is a breakdown catalog on there. The attached file will help also.

Hope that helps.

Oh! By the way we are an FMCA Commercial business just can't remember the number.

Rob Pierce

Sunbum RV LLC

Aria_Repair.pdf

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The electric toilet in our 2000 Foretravel began to need parts and service almost as often as we used the toilet :rolleyes: . So I bought and installed a SeaLand 501 and it is so much better. We can control the amount of water in bowl. The seal NEVER leaks. It does not let odors up fom the black tank. It has a porcelain bowl so it is easy to keep clean. It works every time. I could have bought two of these for the money I spent on parts and overnight shipping on the old toilet. Best of all is that I installed it myself and saved money and a lot of waiting around for someone to get to the job.

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ISM500,

My friend recently had the same problem. He talked to the Theford rep and they told him to remove toilet and check for any loose screws on bottom that activate slide for closure. If loose they would not function properly. He did and had to tighten the screws / bolts? His problem was solved. Been working proper ever since.

Just a thought

Good Luck

Rambler

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Again, just wanted to say a thank you to everyone for all the feedback. Certainly not much good to say about Thetford and specifically the Aria. Have not had a chance to work on the toilet - bigger fish to fry. But misery does like company - now I do not feel like my problem is unique.

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Up-date. Will try to keep it brief.

Removed the toilet. Just two lag bolts in the floor and the water connection (finger tight) at the back.

Stripped it down COMPLETELY. Let the PVC parts soak in a pail of soap and water. The clear water supply hoses required soaking and the ID cleaned with a small bottle style brush.

The sliding blade mechanism was totally disassembled. Quite basic. The gears were removed, cleaned, and repacked with Lubriplate. The blade had accumulated a large wad of toilet paper at the end of it's closing travel. Some might remember the deadly spit ball! Strangely enough, it was not apparent when the toilet was in place. This paper jam had accumulated over time, each piece being impacted into the previous. When cleaned up, the slide rails for the blade were packed with Dow Corning silicon gel which is about the consistency of tooth paste. Lubed the seal as well.

The toilet works perfectly. Quieter too. Better rinsing of the bowl due to more water pressure on the flush cycle since the hoses are clear of any build-up. Were quite black before cleaning. A couple coats of auto wax inside and out went a long way too.

Apparently the blade was sensing the increased resistance caused by the paper build up just before closing so was reversing. Now, the blade seals perfectly so there is standing water in the bowl. Previously, even when the blade was closed manually, the paper jam was pushing the blade away from the seal, causing the standing water to slowly drain away.

Also, switched the flush function at the back so that by holding down the flush button, the toilet remains open, giving more control as to when the bowl is clear before closing.

Hint: Before removing the bowl, trace the outline on the floor with masking tape. Makes re-alignment much easier when reinstalling.

Got lucky! Did not have to spend a dime, just a Saturday afternoon. Thanks for everyone's inputs. Gave the courage to get after it. It's a good feeling when a plan comes together and knowing the toilet is absolutely and perfectly clean, inside and out.

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For 8 years, I put up with intermittent operation of my Thetford, 2 button, electric toilet. Sometimes, it would not seal, it would not open, it would not close. I could clean and adjust and it may work for two or three flushes and at best a week. A couple of times I almost replaced it with a manual one. I cleaned, lubricated (with the recommended lubricant) and followed the recommendations from the "experts". It has been 8 months since I liberally lubricated the gasket and slide with vaseline and the valve and toilet have worked flawlessly since that day.

Just saying!

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