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Old 08-10-2012, 05:44 PM   #1
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Sewer smell by Sump


I was in my basement today and the back room which contains the sump pump and it smelled awful - like a sewage smell. At first I thought it was just the water inside the sump fermenting

I decided to run the pump manually even thought there wasn't enough water to set the float off just to drain whatever was in there.

As I walking into the other room, I heard water running down my main sewer line! I decided to go back to the sump pump room and peal back drywall where the PCV pipe appeared to go outside.

Our house is newer so I knew the pipe went through the drywall under ground level and had always assumed the house was built with it leading to the storm drain or something. Well when i pulled back some drywall I found out that behind it, it makes a sharp left hand angle and immediately flows toward my main sewer line - not leaving the house at all!

So great - (thanks previous owner...) now what do I do? I know its very illegal to keep it this way (not to mention the smell). I assume I'm going to need to pull down all the drywall along that one wall until I find the junction so I can cap it off and then re-route the pump line outside my house right?

What are the regulations for this? How far away from the outside wall should the water be draining to? My biggest issue is the side of the house which the pump is on is always soaked - the ground is always wet between my neighbor's and I's house because of how the land is graded.

How toxic is that room knowing it smells like sewer water?


Last edited by adgjqetuo; 08-10-2012 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 08-10-2012, 06:41 PM   #2
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Sewer smell by Sump


Details first---post a picture of that pit if possible----it sounds like a sewage pit to me---does it have a discharge pipe (usually 2") and another pipe that is a vent?

Does your basement have two pits?

Can you see an old hole outside of the house that could have been the sump discharge location?

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Old 08-10-2012, 06:55 PM   #3
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Sewer smell by Sump


I can post a pic but it's prob not going to do much bec of all the drywall.

I just got back from my neighbors house who has the exact same house as me but with an unfinished basement. From looking at his house my sump discharge is definitely flowing into my main sewer line. I only have one pit and it only has one line out from the pump

According to my neighbor none of the houses were built with a pump or discharge line. Everyone had to run their own. My owner decided to do it incorrectly.

The old owner also routed the bar sink so it drains into sump but that's a whole nother story....

Last edited by adgjqetuo; 08-10-2012 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 08-10-2012, 07:19 PM   #4
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Sewer smell by Sump


Okay---What made me think sewage,not sump,was the sewer gas--a common problem with sewage pits that are not sealed and the HVAC system creates a bit of negative pressure.

Look at the drainage in your yard and determine the best discharge location---Water must drain away from the house and not flood the yard.

We will help--lots of member here have done what you are about to do---Mike---
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Old 08-11-2012, 08:18 AM   #5
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Sewer smell by Sump


Thanks - a friend of mine is a master plumber so i'm going to have him help me with running the PVC. My only concern is drywall and getting it to look the way it was before - I have an awful time with seams.

Here is my best attempt at a picture. I took a panorama to so it can be easier shown.

Still not sure what to do with the bar sink drain.
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Sewer smell by Sump-img_0465.jpg  
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:00 PM   #6
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Sewer smell by Sump


Your plumber friend will take care of the piping---

It's not a sin to hire out the drywall patching---It is hard to find a good taper for small jobs,however.

If you must make the repairs yourself--come on back---many members here know how to do it---Mike---
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Old 08-20-2012, 01:53 PM   #7
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Sewer smell by Sump


You are correct on what needs to be done. As far as the length away from the house you should have it at least 5 feet away. Now keep in mind, running that discharge line farther than that you should consider burying it because in the winter time it could freeze. Without actually seeing the lay of the land I couldn’t say for certain where to run it just away is all I can say. As far as the room if you spray some simple green all over you should help prevent anything from getting really disgusting.

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Old 10-15-2012, 06:02 PM   #8
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Sewer smell by Sump


Finally had the chance to get this fixed - thanks for all your help! The old owner actually had the pipe downhill towards the sump with no check valve! No wonder why it smelled!

I uploaded some before / after photos

First two are before, last three are after. The last picture was before I caulked - it's sealed coming out of the house now (in case anyone points that out )
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Sewer smell by Sump-image-717764273.jpg   Sewer smell by Sump-image-4117345797.jpg   Sewer smell by Sump-image-3746106915.jpg   Sewer smell by Sump-image-2092609846.jpg   Sewer smell by Sump-image-1149862750.jpg  


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Last edited by adgjqetuo; 10-15-2012 at 06:09 PM.
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