U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > House
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 06-02-2011, 09:52 AM
 
151 posts, read 474,421 times
Reputation: 80

Advertisements

We have a new construction home that we have been in for 1 year now. Recently, every once in a while (maybe once a week) we have noticed a sewage smell from the master bathroom sink, that only lasts for a second. All the sinks have the P traps installed. We have two sinks in the master, and it only seems to be coming from one of them, although because it only lasts for a second we are not 100% sure. We do not have a septic tank. The pipes are all PVC. I do not see anything wet or leaking in the crawl space. We do not have any large trees that could have leaves blocking the vent, or roots damaging pipes. I was going to buy some cleaner to pour down just in case there is something blocking in the pipes, but I wanted to check here first. I donít know much about plumbing but wanted to see if this is something that I can fix. If this is a big issue, I may be able to contact the builder and have them fix whatever could be wrong, although I would like to understand the problem myself.

Thanks for your help.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-02-2011, 10:49 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
26,732 posts, read 57,642,470 times
Reputation: 29057
Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy416 View Post
All the sinks have the P traps installed.
Trap (plumbing) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

if the trap has water in it then that will block sewage gas from passing through.
with new construction it's unlikely the stack is too far away.

There are a few conditional terms in those statements of mine...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,808 posts, read 51,165,405 times
Reputation: 27531
Got a pic of the piping under those sinks? Better yet, take one pic, then move the camera to the right about three inches and take a second pic. Post both and I can then see the pipes in 3-D to get a better idea of how they are running.

Is there any sound when you get the whiff? Is water running or not? Is it after a toilet flushes somewhere in the house? Does the bathroom have a stack vent somewhere? Is there a little upright black cylindrical thing under the sink that comes off the sewer pipe?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 11:09 AM
 
438 posts, read 1,460,878 times
Reputation: 431
I am by NO means a plumber or know much about it, but do you use that sink often? I have heard if you do not use a sink or shower often, sulfur builds up and hence the smell...just a thought...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 11:29 AM
 
151 posts, read 474,421 times
Reputation: 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
Got a pic of the piping under those sinks? Better yet, take one pic, then move the camera to the right about three inches and take a second pic. Post both and I can then see the pipes in 3-D to get a better idea of how they are running.

Is there any sound when you get the whiff? Is water running or not? Is it after a toilet flushes somewhere in the house? Does the bathroom have a stack vent somewhere? Is there a little upright black cylindrical thing under the sink that comes off the sewer pipe?
I will have to upload pictures when I get back to the house. I really wish I had answers to all of your questions. It only lasts for a second at most. I have not noticed a sound. Getting ready this morning we did use the sink and flush the toilet and we smelled it. I will try to recreate it, as it does not happen all of the time and unfortunately, I do not recall the order. I will have to pay more attention when it happens again. I will look for the vent stack under the sink when I get home. If it is there, I will include a picture of it too.

This bathroom is upstairs, has two sinks, a toilet, bathtub and separate shower. We do use the sinks daily, so they should not be drying out.

Last edited by newguy416; 06-02-2011 at 11:51 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Sarasota FL
6,490 posts, read 8,568,618 times
Reputation: 5971
I had the same problem with my sink a few months ago. I traced the stink to an accumulation of rotting hair, soap scum and some kind of thick black gunk stuck around the rod that opens/closes the pop up sink stopper. There was so much of it that it also blocked the over flow vent hole. It smelled realy bad when I was cleaning the parts. After cleaning everthing, no more stink.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 12:31 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,417 posts, read 24,151,076 times
Reputation: 24664
Try pouring some bleach down the drain and then leave the room for 20 min or so. Then run cold water for a few min. That may fix the problem.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 06:16 PM
 
151 posts, read 474,421 times
Reputation: 80
Here are a few pictures of the sink we think the smell is coming from. I ran the water and it seemed that there was a faint smell when I turned the water off, but it was hard to tell. It was not nearly as strong as we have smelled before.

I can try bleach, but I was under the impression that it really does not work. I will hold off until I hear something else.

Thanks.
Attached Thumbnails
Sewage Smell From Bathroom Sink-dsc00156-640x360-.jpg   Sewage Smell From Bathroom Sink-dsc00157-640x360-.jpg  
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 07:17 PM
 
Location: Georgia, USA
21,394 posts, read 25,986,152 times
Reputation: 26304
I would vote for cleaning the sink thoroughly, too.

The trap is easy to remove --- no tools required. Remove and clean the trap and rmove the drain stopper and clean out any gunk, as d4g4m suggested. No need for bleach or drain cleaner.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-02-2011, 08:58 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,808 posts, read 51,165,405 times
Reputation: 27531
OK. Nice neat installation there. The water in the trap should be more than adequate. You almost surely would have heard the water sucking out if you had a stack problem. One thing I would like you to check. See where the pipe goes in to the wall? It appears that it is going in at an angle or has a bend there because the tailrace from the P trap is too short. I don't see any dripback, but take a bit of typing paper and see if there is a gap anywhere in the joints. Try to wiggle the whole thing. It should be solid. Make sure all those knurled connectors are finger tight and not wobbly.

If you are getting an immediate sewage smell at the sink level or above when you run water, and those checks come out ok, chances now appear unlikely that it is coming from the drain connections.

That means the idea of crud collecting above the level of water in the trap is more likely. Bucket under the trap, twist loose the two lowest joints, remove and inspect. Home stores sell a little plastic stick with barbs on it, used to remove hair clogs. Insert into the pipe from the sink from the trap side working up, pull back, look for gunk.

Next possibility is something in the overflow. Those little home steamers are great for forcing the issue. Stick the wand with the stem into the overflow and let'r rip for three or four minutes.

If that doesn't fix it, time to move on to other areas where smell can originate, especially above the counter level.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > House
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:31 PM.

© 2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top