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Old 06-13-2013, 09:22 PM   #1
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


I've lived in my house for 30 years and never had this problem until now. We have a toilet where a sewage smell is coming up through the bowl. Here's what i know and have done:
1. The toilet is about 5 years old....replaced old one during remodel
2. We're on septic tank
3. It's used daily
4. Replaced wax rings
5. Sealed all around base and bolts
6. Checked roof vent - all clear
7. Smell us usually worse first thing in the morning

Any ideas?

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Old 06-13-2013, 09:44 PM   #2
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


does the bowl refill like it should after it is flushed? do you ever notice the water level in the bowl being low? does the toilet ever bubble?

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Old 06-13-2013, 10:35 PM   #3
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


Yes, the bowl fills back like it should and the water level is always normal. Nope, no bubbling that would indicate gas.
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Old 06-13-2013, 10:43 PM   #4
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


Did you try flushing it after you used it?


Are you sure it's coming from the bowl, and not beneath the bowl? If the wax ring is leaking, the sewage is getting under the bowl and sitting there turning septic. How does the caulking around the base look? Is it still intact?


Are you sure it's coming from the toilet and not a shower pan? Do you have a tile shower pan?
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Old 06-13-2013, 11:47 PM   #5
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


As funny as it sounds, the pinpointing of sewage smells, can be a very difficult process. I don't really have any other ideas, you seem to have covered them all, just some suggestions that you may have over looked.

Septic tank checked out good? Serviced etc.?

If you are positively sure the sewage smell is coming from the toilet bowl, just a suggestion, you could re-install the toilet bowl using a new wax ring. Wax rings are cheap and they sell extra thick ones as well.

While your at it, make sure that the flange is resting on top of the finished floor at the proper height and has no cracks or breaks, clean out the old wax from the flange really good and take a closer look at the flange itself. It's possible the flange itself could have a hair line crack in it, (not very likely) and when the toilet bowl is remounted, the tension from the bolts, sitting on it, or flushing it, etc., could possibly cause it to expand and contract, thereby letting sewage gas smells leak into the room at certain times of the day. Just a thought.

Another suggestion is to have a professional smoke test done by a certified plumber of your sewer and vent system. This would give you a better indication as to where your sewage gas smell is actually coming from. Assuming it's actually coming from the toilet bowl itself, and not from somewhere else in your plumbing.

Others will be along shortly with more tips and ideas for you. Stay tuned.

Last edited by jmon; 06-14-2013 at 10:20 AM.
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Old 06-14-2013, 10:40 AM   #6
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


I installed a new "thick" wax ring a couple of months ago when first got the smell with no luck. I also thoroughly sealed around the base and bolts at the same time. The "sniff test" definitely has the smell soming from in the bowl and not around the base or elsewhere. Septic tank seems to be working find as this is the only place in the house that the problem is occuring. Just hate to pay a plumber when it might be a DIY project....but, might have to. Thanks
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Old 06-14-2013, 05:34 PM   #7
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


Then start checking your drain pipe.
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Old 06-14-2013, 11:08 PM   #8
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Sewage smell coming from toilet bowl


Wax Ring Usually. Your vent pipe that goes through the roof is propely supported, and did not fall back into the attic did it?

You know, I think I read a post just like this before. Septic tank smell in the AM check past posts, just for the heck of it.

During remodel is it possible someone cracked your closet bend and tried to seal it, and its let go? Pull toilet and inspect very closely with good light.

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Last edited by jagans; 06-14-2013 at 11:12 PM.
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