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Old 11-28-2010, 07:37 AM   #1
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bubbles in basement toilet


Recently, bubbles have been rising in a basement toilet. I think it is occurring when laundry is being done on the main level. We have a septic tank system so I'm wondering if the septic tank is full and needs to be pumped. Last time it was pumped was in 2006.

Does this sound like a septic tank issue or could it possibly be something else?

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Old 11-28-2010, 08:31 AM   #2
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bubbles in basement toilet


MC,

Is your basement a walk out? Does your wasteline exit your house through the foundation wall? Is there an ejector pit?

Bubbles in the toilet are either an indication of venting issues, which could also be a symptom of the septic beginning to back up.... To early to make that call without a little more info. It is possible you have a partial plug in your wasteline that is restricting the flow to the septic also.

You may just need the line to be augered, and not pump the tank...
How many people reside in the house.....Usually if my memory serves me A family of 4 should have the tank pumped every 5 years and a couple every 8-10yrs...

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Old 11-28-2010, 08:52 AM   #3
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bubbles in basement toilet


basement is a walkout.

4 people reside in the house.

Not sure if the wasteline exits the house through the foundation wall, but I'm assuming so since the area where it gets pumped is sort of in the middle of the back yard.

No idea if there is an "ejector pit"? Don't even know what that is to be honest.

you say "may just need the line to be augered". Is that more/less complex than having it simply pumped?
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:02 AM   #4
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bubbles in basement toilet


MC

Sorry I hit you with too much at once.. Lets slow it down. If you are a walk out basement and you do not see a sewer line exiting mid wall in your basement anywhere. then you will not have an ejector pit. Your sewer line is most likely running under your floor and out the back of the house. I would then say that you need to look at a partial blockage of the sewerline, keeping in mind that this "blockage" could actually be the beginning signs of the tank needing pumped. If you have access to your septic tanks lid you can open this ann see if the tank is full. Keeping in mind this is not the most pleasant experience. Helpful hint, Keep all loose articles the heck away from you while openning the lid as whatever falls in I am sure you wont want back!!!

As for augering -vs- Pumping they are 2 totally different things. Augering involves a machine that runs a cable through you line from the house to the septic to clear an obstruction. Pumping involves a truck that actually has a hose that empties the septic tank in the back yard. You can rent an auger from a tool rental company, but it is not something I reccomend without experience in this field as you can do more harm than good.

In my opinion I reccomend that you contact your local professional plumber or septic company for help.

Last edited by Work4living; 11-28-2010 at 09:09 AM.
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:50 AM   #5
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bubbles in basement toilet


I'm trying to remember who we used in 2006 to have it pumped. Until then, is there another good way to find a good septic company for my area (Atlanta, GA)? I might ask some neighbors, but was looking for other good ways to have a recommended septic company come do it.
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:59 AM   #6
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a proper septic system doesnt need pumping, thats a money making rumor imo. My system put in new in 1985, after 20+ years with kids needed no pumping. we were selling our house and decided to have it pumped as a sell perk, the guy came out said he was happy to take our money but the system needed no pumping
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Old 11-28-2010, 10:11 AM   #7
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Polk
I agree, however in this day. There is more to it. Soil composition, perculation, etc...
So as for your system great. As for the other. I am unable to determine its condition. Since I have 28 years plumbing experience and concede I don't know everything. I defer to to Mc contacting a local pro who knows the area.

Talk to your neighbors! They will know. Go to the chamber of commerce ask them who is local and been around for years.
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Old 11-28-2010, 10:20 AM   #8
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in this day i agree, 10 yrs ago houses were still being built on decent soil and at depths greater than 18". I'm guessing if tank needs pumping it would be perking thru field at ground level. Or someone may have driven over distribution box, so I agree get a pro plumber to look may be vent issue
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Old 07-18-2011, 07:20 PM   #9
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OK, I know this post is old, but we FINALLY got around to having our septic system pumped. It has basically been about 5 yrs so hopefully it will be good for a while. Not sure it needed it, but it was probably more a piece of mind.

The bubbling in the basement toilet is still occurring. Pretty much only when the clothes washer and/or the kitchen dishwasher are running. It doesn't bubble enough to spill over the toilet either. Just enough to know that it probably shouldn't be doing it. And it doesn't bubble when other showers or tubs are in use.

In all honesty, it has probably been doing this for several years (about 2006) at about the same rate & hasn't gotten better or worse. Any idea what this might be? I'm thinking probably some sort of blockage, but maybe not.
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Old 07-19-2011, 06:40 AM   #10
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a proper septic system doesnt need pumping, thats a money making rumor imo.
All septic tanks need to be pumped every so many years. But you have to dig up and open the hatch as if to pump the tank in order to inspect it and see whether it is overdue for pumping. You can only estimate when it will need to be pumped next, or you with help from an expert (such as a pumping company technician) can set up an arbitrary time schedule such as every 4 years.

If the tank has been pumped out recently then the need for pumping again is never the solution to any problem. Pumping out again in quick succession is useless except to let you keep living in the house (will last a few to several days) and buy some time until you can make repairs elsewhere.

Septic tank contents does not start to exit to the leach field until the level in the tank gets to within about a foot of the top.
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Old 07-19-2011, 07:13 AM   #11
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bubbles in basement toilet


I used to agree with tpolk, in that a properly operating septic system did not need pumping, but with the amount of soap, tooth paste, mouth wash, etc. that goes down the drain today, all designed to kill bacteria, I doubt that you wasted any time or money having it pumped. Nevertheless, in a situation such as yours, I generally think of a vent issue before a septic issue. If you are comfortable doing so, I would go up on the roof, and run a hand snake or water hose down the vent stack(s), and see if that helps.
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Old 07-21-2011, 08:29 AM   #12
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vent stack? I'm not familiar with this. Does every house have one? If so, is it located on the side of the house, in the middle, etc? If needed, how much does this generally cost for a plumber to do?
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Old 07-21-2011, 09:08 AM   #13
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vent stack? I'm not familiar with this. Does every house have one? If so, is it located on the side of the house, in the middle, etc? If needed, how much does this generally cost for a plumber to do?
the vent stack is a 4" pvc pipe sticking up thor the roof. Now it will have a leed piece over it so you will not see a white pipe. You say I think it is occurring when laundry is being done on the main level.I think it is occurring when laundry is being done on the main level. Make sure if that is the only time it is happing. The water come's out of the washer fast. This may be a draing problum ? Like the washer pvc pipe may be getting slugged up due to soap slime?? Who installed this unit's may have conected the infeed into the 4" pvc line togother . It is hard to tell how the plumbing is laid out how many Y's and so forth was used .
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Old 07-21-2011, 09:18 AM   #14
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bubbles in basement toilet


Maybe someone used the downstairs toilet vent to drain the upstairs laundry hookup.
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Old 07-21-2011, 09:45 AM   #15
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The house was built in 1999, but the basement (& downstairs toilet) were all completed in 2006 so I'm thinking it isn't possible to have used the downstairs toilet vent to drain the main level laundry hookup.

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