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Thread: Mystery odor

  1. #1
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    Default Mystery odor

    Sewer gas -septic smell invading a bathroom on an intermittent basis. Started a year ago, stopped, back again part time.

    Shower, 2 sinks and a toilet in this bathroom. Traps are full. Toilet replaced about 3 years ago. Where to start? poor seal at wax ring, with some intermittent "back" pressure from the city mains? Under slab leak? - Desert climate, slab on grade.

    Does the average plumber have a sniffer or some system to zone in on the locale without tearing into stuff?

  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member SteveW's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ballvalve View Post
    Sewer gas -septic smell invading a bathroom on an intermittent basis. Started a year ago, stopped, back again part time.

    Shower, 2 sinks and a toilet in this bathroom. Traps are full. Toilet replaced about 3 years ago. Where to start? poor seal at wax ring, with some intermittent "back" pressure from the city mains? Under slab leak? - Desert climate, slab on grade.

    Does the average plumber have a sniffer or some system to zone in on the locale without tearing into stuff?


    Not a pro, but have dealt with this in my home. Two common possibilities come to mind:

    --sink overflows have smelly gunk in them (flush with water, and possibly a bleach solution);

    --sink tailpiece has gunk stuck to the sides above the trap (clean with a bottle brush -- but whatever you do, do this UNDER A LARGE TOWEL so you don't spray smelly black sink gunk all over your bathroom like I did).

  3. #3

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    I have ran into odor problems before. Check all traps and vents make sure they all penetrate through the roof. Camera all line vents and drains to se if you see any broken pipes. If still no luck the ultimate test is smoke bombs. Make sure you get the good ones from the hvac supply store. drop them down the vent lines and look for smoke if you see nothing it isn't a problem in your plumbing system.
    Thanks,
    Taylor Allen
    Website: http://www.rtaplumbing.com

  4. #4
    DIY Senior Member SteveW's Avatar
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    Soooo, ballvalve, any news on this situation?
    Tried these suggestions yet?
    Worked? didn't help?

  5. #5
    DIY Senior Member Runs with bison's Avatar
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    Default

    The only time I had this sewer gas odor problem the wax ring was no longer making a good seal.

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