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Old 12-08-2010, 07:10 AM   #1
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


Since moving in we have been dealing with the stink of vent stack fumes and cannot find the cause. At first it seemed to happen on moist, rainy days, then it was gone for almost all summer, now for the last two weeks, it has been back. Sometimes it actually smells like a dead animal. I have checked neumerous times, under every thing I could move, lift, or look under, I looked in all the flower pots, I removed everything from the linnen closet and both vanitys... nothing. Satisfied that the cats have not hidden anything for me to find I turned my attention to the walls. i got on hands and knees and smelled around the base of every wall....nothing. I smelled the shower drain, both sink drains and even....yuck... the toilet base... not a clue. So I went up on the roof and the stink from the vent pipe almost killed me..lol what i did notice was the pipe sticks up about 12-18 inches from the roof, there is a gable vent maybe 10 feet away, another one on the part of the house the vent pipe is in and its about 5 feet away and then the vent for the bathroon exaughst fan is about 3 feet away.. My thought was wind is carrying the gasses down, around and under the eves and its coming in the vents so i bought a coupling and piece of 3 in. PVC and connected a 4 foot piece to the vent pipe but it did not help. is there anything I could be missing? i dont think its a clog cause the smell rising out is really strong and like I said, its NOT coming from any of the drains.

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Old 12-08-2010, 07:28 AM   #2
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


It most likely IS a dead animal that needs to be removed.

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Old 12-08-2010, 07:40 AM   #3
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


Possible improper trap on tub or other fixture or perhaps no trap at all.

I've experienced this same problem with older homes where there wasn't a trap installed on bath tubs and the smell only came up through the drains when weather conditions were right.
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:51 AM   #4
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


Thanks. All the drains have traps, granted I had to add them. the sinks and shower had no traps at all when we moved in and I thought that was the problem so i added them. but there is no smell coming from the drains or toilet I cannot pin point the source, I'm hoping that someone didn't put a nail through the pipe inside a wall... that would stink, Literally. seriously though, to me it smells more like dead animal than septic gas.. I was wondering ... if an animal got down the vent pipe (3" pipe) could the smell get somehow into the house say, through the pipe and walls?? what also makes it hard to pin point is that 1 minute or two in the house, you dont notice the smell so sniffing around gets pointless.
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:54 AM   #5
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


Can you use a flashlight and see straight down the 3" on the roof?

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Old 12-08-2010, 09:12 AM   #6
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


I can but only about 5 feet or so then it turns... I wish it were white pipe, i could go in the attic and shine a flash light through it from one side and see if i see any shadows on the other... unless, knowing the previous owner, there is another vent pipe, cut off and buried in a wall somewhere.. that would be my luck!!! lol
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Old 12-08-2010, 09:19 AM   #7
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


You could try running a snake down it (roof vent) and see if you can push the dead critter down the drain, if there is one?

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Old 12-08-2010, 09:59 AM   #8
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


YEAH, I MAY HAVE TO TIE A SMALL WEIGHT TO A STRING AND SEE HOW FAR DOWN IT GOES... (opps, caps lock..lol) maybe there is something dead but not clogging it.. or now im thinking, maybe a crack in the pipe somewhere inside the walls or attic?
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Old 12-08-2010, 10:14 AM   #9
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


Use a fish tape on the roof and see if you can push it down the pipe and how far it goes, should go all the way. Might have to wash the fish tape off after though.
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Old 12-08-2010, 10:32 AM   #10
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


If you smell dead at the pipe on the roof, it surely must be a critter?
I don't see a cracked pipe smelling like a corpse...... like you said, two totally different stinks! Po)

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Old 12-08-2010, 12:52 PM   #11
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


lol you'd think so... its crazy. it smells to me like dead animal but then again... who knows! I hope it is though..kinda.. this way it will eventually rot away and the smell will go away and that will be that!
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:04 PM   #12
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


You could rent a plumber's camera and snake it down to see for sure.

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Old 12-08-2010, 02:52 PM   #13
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


I might have to, Im afraid someone will come over and think we are slobs with dead animals in our walls or worse, we are hiding bodies in the crawlspace...lol I wish someone made a stink detector so I could pin point the source of the smell.. Youd think that with two dogs, one being a coon hound, they would sniff it out for me.. they act like they could care less.
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Old 12-08-2010, 02:54 PM   #14
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


Yeah, bad smells don't seem to bother them.... after all, look how they greet each other....

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Old 12-08-2010, 03:25 PM   #15
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Vent Pipe Stink in house


Quote:
Originally Posted by zacker View Post
I might have to, Im afraid someone will come over and think we are slobs with dead animals in our walls or worse, we are hiding bodies in the crawlspace...lol I wish someone made a stink detector so I could pin point the source of the smell.. Youd think that with two dogs, one being a coon hound, they would sniff it out for me.. they act like they could care less.
Zacker,

It seems this whole discussion is based on the premise that the smell is coming from your roof vent. To verify that, what if you buy some cheap perfume, pour it in a disposable pie plate and put it on your roof on top of the suspect vent. Someone could hold it there to prevent the wind from blowing it off. The plate would block odors coming from the vent and you should then smell the perfume in your home.

If the bad odor is replaced by the perfume smell, then it verifies that the odor is coming from the vent. If not, then you need to look elsewhere for the source of the odor.

HRG

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