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Old 01-08-2009, 07:43 PM   #1
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


We've owned our building/home for 6 years and have been plagued with sewer gas smell all 6 of them, but this winter has been the worst ever!
We've paid plumber after plumber to help us and have torn down walls and disconnected sinks, filled in holes, old traps, extended the stink tube and made sure it's not blocked, we've had the city out, nobody and tell us where the leak is coming from, but every night it gets stinkier and stinkier to the point we've been sleeping with the windows open when it's 2 degrees outside!
Here's the worst part, we own a flower shop, the first floor of our building is the shop and we live above it. The flower shop stinks the worst! Having a flower shop that smells like crap is not exactly good for business!!
Also the city was going to smoke the sewer, but they claim they have no access to it, because they paved over the only manhole that they would have to use.
Does anyone out there have any ideas??
This smell is terrible, plus my daughter has asthma and I'm sure that's not helping it any!!

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Old 01-08-2009, 10:21 PM   #2
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


id say the vent stack is frosted over if this only happens in the winter. if you can get on the roof just pour hot water down the vent

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Old 01-09-2009, 06:06 AM   #3
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


Skeeter,
We've tried that already it didnt make a difference, it smells in the summer months too, but with windows and doors open, you don't notice it as much, plus, I think the cold makes the sewer gas settle lower to the ground and with heat in the summer month it rises.
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Old 01-09-2009, 06:47 AM   #4
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


Where I live the city employs a guy with a snake camera to seek out blockage between the house and the mains... for free.
You could ask the city if they could provide that service in lieu of the manhole, at least eliminating that section as the source.
Some plumbers carry this equipment too. There are several great plumbers on line most days who should be able to provide you more info.
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:52 AM   #5
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


The camera is a good idea. I'm wondering if you have a shower somewhere that doesn't have a trap. That's a place where installers sometimes take shortcuts. Also, if it was previously an industrial building is there a floor drain somewhere? That could also cause the problem.
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Old 02-24-2009, 10:54 AM   #6
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


Hi,
I am currently in the process of buying an 83 yr old home. We decided to not have a home inspection b/c we were in a bidding war. The owner disclosed that she has to pour water down her basement drains once a week and then she has no smaells in her home. She had all the pluming done in 2002. She said it's never beena problem, just a nuisance. She is a really old lady moving to a small apartment. Should this be something to be concerned with? I know nothing about houses really. Also, we are goig back through the home this wknd. Are there things i particular that I could look for? The home is conditional upon financing and I really am nervous and could use an answer asap? Could you please help me? Thanks so much!
Nervous home buyer!
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Old 02-24-2009, 11:16 AM   #7
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


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Originally Posted by gassmellhelp View Post
Hi,
I am currently in the process of buying an 83 yr old home. We decided to not have a home inspection b/c we were in a bidding war. The owner disclosed that she has to pour water down her basement drains once a week and then she has no smaells in her home. She had all the pluming done in 2002. She said it's never beena problem, just a nuisance. She is a really old lady moving to a small apartment. Should this be something to be concerned with? I know nothing about houses really. Also, we are goig back through the home this wknd. Are there things i particular that I could look for? The home is conditional upon financing and I really am nervous and could use an answer asap? Could you please help me? Thanks so much!
Nervous home buyer!

That doesn't sound unusual to me. When the old lady pours water in the floor drains, she is replacing the water in the trap that has already evaporated. You can do this manually like she has been doing, or install a primer system that automatically replenishes the water in the trap.
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Old 02-24-2009, 11:23 AM   #8
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


Thank you so much. That puts my mind at ease.
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Old 02-24-2009, 06:29 PM   #9
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


add a cup of cooking oil it will keep the water from evaporating
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Old 02-24-2009, 06:49 PM   #10
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


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Originally Posted by skeeter 152 View Post
add a cup of cooking oil it will keep the water from evaporating
Thats a great Idea Skeeter, We have this first floor bath and shower that never gets used and we get that smell from the tub i have found after some investigating. I was accusing my wife from passing g??. which didn't go over well. I'm going to try that thanks BOB.
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Old 02-24-2009, 08:58 PM   #11
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


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Thats a great Idea Skeeter, We have this first floor bath and shower that never gets used and we get that smell from the tub i have found after some investigating. I was accusing my wife from passing g??. which didn't go over well. I'm going to try that thanks BOB.
You think your wife is mad? My wife was complaining about her breasts being small. I told her to rub toilet paper between them. When she asked me why I said "Well it worked on your butt"

I will be back when I get out of the hospital!

Gary
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Old 02-25-2009, 04:54 AM   #12
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Old 02-25-2009, 01:44 PM   #13
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


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Originally Posted by Gary_602z View Post
You think your wife is mad? My wife was complaining about her breasts being small. I told her to rub toilet paper between them. When she asked me why I said "Well it worked on your butt"

I will be back when I get out of the hospital!

Gary
LOL


Great idea on the oil. We have a shower we seldom use so it sometimes gets that sewer smell. I'll have to try that.
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Old 02-25-2009, 05:42 PM   #14
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


Your actual house can be smoke tested, access a manhole and blowing the smoke up through the sewer tap is only just one option, there has to be some other cleanout in the building any cleanout will do. Also if the flower shop downstairs has any floor drains that are not primed that will result in gases.
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Old 02-26-2009, 07:53 AM   #15
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Help my house stinks like sewer!!!!


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Originally Posted by skeeter 152 View Post
add a cup of cooking oil it will keep the water from evaporating
Doesn't cooking oil...
1. become rancid?
2. separate into solid parts that leave residues?

Are there doors that can be closed to help narrow down where the gas is coming in? Hanging sheet plastic curtains to partition off a basement (to help narrow down the source, not as a temporary solution) costs a lot less than hiring plumber after plumber.

(copied from another forum)
Maybe the gas is seeping in through cracks in the foundation, particularly where pipes enter.

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Last edited by AllanJ; 02-26-2009 at 08:01 AM.
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