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Old 09-15-2010, 09:11 PM   #1
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Strange Master Bath 'Odor'


Alright, I've run into something strange and just not sure what's going on, so I'm hoping one of you might have an idea.

In our Master Bath we have a separate shower stall and a tub, two sinks in a vanity and a toilet in a water closet.

The last four nights, when I've walked into the master bedroom I can smell this odor as soon as I walk in. When I go into the master bath it's relatively strong. It's smells almost like mildew/sewer gas. I can't honestly tell where it's coming from in the bathroom, but it's definitely stronger in there.

Strange thing is, that during the day we don't smell it at all. It only kicks in around 8-9 PM at night but is gone by the time I wake up at 7 AM. We're not taking tons of showers, using the washing machine or toilet any more than we ever have at that time.

We're on city water/sewer if that helps.

Any ideas?

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Old 09-15-2010, 09:32 PM   #2
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Strange Master Bath 'Odor'


There may be a leak in the "P" trap, when the water is gone, the smell comes in.

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Old 09-15-2010, 09:46 PM   #3
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Any way to test that without waiting for water to start leaking out of the floor below it? I know it's not the sinks, it's dry under there. There's no way for me to get to either trap on the tub or shower without cutting a hole in the ceiling below.
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Old 09-16-2010, 08:56 AM   #4
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Hmmm, if there's a ceiling below, it'd likely show water damage?

hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm... next time you smell it, can you push a washcloth down the drain and see if it comes back out dry? Or can you see down the drain well enough with a flashlight?

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Old 09-16-2010, 09:07 AM   #5
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I checked the ceiling below, no water damage. I'll try the washcloth trick, but I think we _might_ have gotten it. We don't use the tub that often, so I'm betting the water in the trap had evaporated. Ran a bunch of water through it last night and we'll give it a day or so and see if the smell comes back.

Thanks for all the suggestions so far.
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Old 09-16-2010, 09:34 AM   #6
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Evaporation would take at least a few days, depending upon how dry it is where you are.
I hope for your sake then it IS as simple as making sure there is water in the trap! Po)

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Old 09-16-2010, 09:37 AM   #7
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If the trap emptied out, it leaked. It won't evaporate that fast.

You could leave the water dripping in the shower to keep the trap full but if indeed there is a leak, you will get soaking of the ceiling below before too long.

If you have another tub or shower to use, you could tape over the shower drain with some sheet plastic to see if the smell doesn't come back.
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Old 09-16-2010, 09:45 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanJ View Post

If you have another tub or shower to use, you could tape over the shower drain with some sheet plastic to see if the smell doesn't come back.
Good idea!

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Old 09-16-2010, 09:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
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If the trap emptied out, it leaked. It won't evaporate that fast..
Ah, well, that's relative. We probably have used that tub a total of 3 or 4 times in 3 years, and we probably haven't used it in 4-5 months.
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Old 09-16-2010, 10:03 AM   #10
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That's your answer then! It certainly WILL evaporate over that much time!
You can put water in the drain, than pour in a wee bit of cooking oil to cover the water.
This will keep it from evaporating. Po)

Problem solved.

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Old 09-16-2010, 10:09 AM   #11
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Awesome, thanks everyone!
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Old 09-16-2010, 10:18 AM   #12
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Not a problem..... that's why they pay us the big bucks. Po)

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Old 09-17-2010, 08:05 AM   #13
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Did you figure out that it was the trap in the tub?

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