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 Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: cuda418 (IL)

It looks like the stink pipe was installed incorrectly creating a debris trap which has clogged. I plan to vacuum out what I can and use a snake and pressure washer to move the debris past the horizontal pipe that should not be there, after that I have a carbon filter that has a mushroom cap that should prevent the problem. It may look easy to get to but with new insulation replacing that pipe would be a pain. In a perfect world I would replace to get rid of the horizontal pipe and 90 degree bend. Since I would like to avoid this and plan to place a filter on the top preventing future problems my question is whats the best way to go about flushing out the clog? Will my idea of a sewer snake or sewer tape and pressure washer work?





Edited 1 times.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: LemonPlumber (FL)

This does not look like a bad install to me.Is the debris from trees above?You may find just sticking your wet vac hose down and then wrapping a wet rag around where it meets the vent piping will provide enough suction to clear the debris.Watch the type of cap you use to avoid freeze problems as the weather changes where you live.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: cuda418 (IL)

I will try that and use a snake to possibly dislodge anything close to that first 90 degree bend. And stick a hose down there. I had to get the odor hogs as the smell ruins the house outside at all times. I did get the commercial units that are black ABS with a mushroom cap, hopefully I will have some luck with those. I was told the smell might be due to an unhealthy septic, it was pumped but due to e-coli hitting our old well non stop we use a ton of bleach in the house. The new well was put in but we are waiting for it to settle in and we plan to re-route our RO discharge and water softener which are not hooked up yet to a non-septic drain. We are hoping the tank will establish itself over time and the carbon filters will not be needed.

We did have the sewer lines looked at with a camera and a flow test on the outlet and did not find any problems. We cant figure out why both toilets on seperate vent pipes are sucking in air, maybe its just the toilet brand. They dont seem to be sucking traps dry but if I am going to add restrictive carbon filters I want to make sure the vent lines are clear.

Thanks for the response.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: dlh (TX)

the only thing that could clog the vent where it is horizontal in the picture is possibly squirrels hiding their food there or you have a lot of trees and i mean a lot hanging over the vent or you do not have a clogged vent which is what i believe.

you need to get a plumber in there that knows what they are doing to figure out why you are having the problem

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PLUMBERS "Protecting The Health Of The Nation"

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: SMSPlumbing (PA)

Are you still using a lot of bleach? Or was this just to cure the problem? Bleach will kill the enzymes that are in your septic tank and stop it from breaking down the waste. I would use a hose and wash out the vent and then just install a screen over the pipe. If the smell still persist then you may have bigger problems as you already know. The carbon filter is just a band aid, not a fix. Look into it further, get a professional involved.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: Nayman's Drain Services (Non-US)

Think of your septic tank as a liquid compost heap.
Lots of bacterium to break down the solid particles and turn them into something useful.
The more chemicals you add, the more bacterium you kill, effectively killing your septic system.

Stop using as many chemicals as you possibly can, or discharge your gray water into a dry well.
Much more effective, and you have a wonderfully working septic system.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: PlumberManDan (IA)

IN ILLINOIS, You could get away with it during the spring summer and fall, However, in the winter ALMOST ANYTHING you will place over the opening will frost over at some point in time, every winter.

PlumbCat TM 2003


Plumbermandan

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: hj (AZ)

That is a very STANDARD way of installing a vent pipe. What is the problem and why do you think the vent is causing it?

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: hj (AZ)

You entire diagnosis seems to be based on false assumptions. But since bleach is antibacterial and a septic tank REQUIRES bacteria, your use of "a lot of bleach" may be killing the tank and causing your problems.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: Prudoco (FL)

I have always thought that there has to be a break in the line for a sewer odor----not a clogged vent pipe.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: cuda418 (IL)

I know the vent pipe is clogged because I saw it on a camera inspection. I know the sewer lines are all good as they were inspected by camera as well. The tank has been pumped. I was told the excessive bleach may be keeping the septic tank from establishing itself causing the smell. The carbon caps are a band-aid until this takes place and I am aware of the freezing risk.

The fact remains I need to clear the vent. I was going to snake it and power wash it down. It was the "professionals" that claimed it was installed wrong and had to be re-done. It was the "professionals" that claimed I had a break in the sewer line on the inlet side, after inspection the outlet side and after inspection became "we have no idea".

So the pros had their shot, many of them in fact which is why I came here. My plan is to clear the vent, re-route the RO and softener right away to the sump pump and once the new well is ready we can stop using bleach and hope the tank rights itself as far as bacteria is concerned.

If I am making assumptions they are based on "professionals" which is why I came here hoping to find other professionals that could give me some other ideas instead of coming after me with assumption speeches and regurgitating advice that I already said in the first few message I alredy knew.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: hj (AZ)

There are "professionals" who are experts at separating you from as much of your funds as possible, and then there are "professionals" who try to give you good advice and service. My opinion is you are dealing with one of the former, and really need one of the latter. Clogged vents can cause specific symptoms, but only under certain circumstances, and you have NOT shown me anything that indicates you have ANY of them.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: dlh (TX)

Prudoco, a clogged vent can , with the right circumstances, allow traps to be siphoned and since the job of a p-trap is to keep sewer gasses and odors out of a building a clogged vent can cause smells

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PLUMBERS "Protecting The Health Of The Nation"

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: rudythplbr63 (AK)

I disagree with Pudoco, I live in an area, Ketchikan, AK that has many houses w/no vents whatsoever, no drain probs, no smell probs, and no trap siphoning problems. Do we REALLY need vents on our plumbing, in single story houses? Or is it a myth promulgated by unon plumbers looking for work?

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: SMSPlumbing (PA)

Every system has to have a vent. Some people had stubed them into the attics. But you have to have someplace for that air to go win the water is draining. Its a national code. Not just union.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: hj (AZ)

If you do NOT know why vents are needed, and think they were just a "make work" scheme of union plumbers, then you must NOT have gone through an accredited apprenticeship OR journeyman training program.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: dlh (TX)

you have a vent somewhere most likely

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PLUMBERS "Protecting The Health Of The Nation"

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: Nayman's Drain Services (Non-US)

SMS, it's actually International Plumbing Code

Cuda,
the over use of chemicals will make your septic tank stink. A good working septic will smell, but not stink. Again, it's the bacterial action that does this for you. When you stop using chemicals, open the lid of the tank, and let the chlorine gas off.
If you use a product you flush to help get your tank going (I am strongly against that kind of product), Flush it after 2 or 3 days after you first opened the lid of the tank.

Personally, I use dead chickens on the "solid" side of the tank, that is, the side closest to the house. The decomp of the chicken (feathers, feet, beak, NOT a store bought)will kickstart your tank back into good working order in no time flat.
In 6 months, you won't even be able to find anything that resmbles any chicken part.
Listen to the Professionals here.
We have nothing to gain by giving you the wrong info, not like the guy you had in your house before.
Snake/auger your vent. Don't hose it. I have more than once seen someone wash their vents, only to wind up with leaks in their ceiling.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: hj (AZ)

quote from Lemon; The seal that keeps sewer gas from killing people in the homes you plumbed.

Please quote the source for even ONE person who has been killed by sewer gas in the house.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: LemonPlumber (FL)

You will follow the plumber to other non sanitary area's.See the plagues.Some are related to bugs.They are still all related to the water.Gov.cdc is functional lectureship.

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 Re: Bathroom vent clog - stink pipe problem
Author: SMSPlumbing (PA)

Thanks Nayman. Forgot the inter part. Thats what I meant though :S Must have been the glue. Or even the sewer gasses



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