Poch12: How Dangerous is Sewer Gas

Old 06-23-12, 06:20 PM
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Poch12: How Dangerous is Sewer Gas

Mod note: Post moved from thread http://www.doityourself.com/forum/pl...ml#post1977154

I recently discovered that an old toilet in a second bathroom down a hall in our home had dried out. I'd shut off the water several years ago due to a leak in the tank, and have been waiting until the bathroom could be remodeled to fix it because we don't need or use the second bathroom. Some debris was in the toilet, which I figured critters or bugs had dragged in, and I cleaned it up and poured water in the bowl.

Now reading this, I'm freaked out. Were we being exposed to sewage gases this whole time? I leave the door to that room open, though it's down a hall from rooms we use. I've never smelt anything from the area, and when I cleaned the toilet there was no foul odor. Would I have known if sewer gasses were leaking into our home? Can someone advise?

Last edited by ray2047; 06-23-12 at 06:39 PM.
Old 06-24-12, 05:03 AM
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If your home's plumbing has a good vent system you might not have had much sewer gas coming from the toilet. Sewer gas is a pretty noticeable smell. Since you never smelled it I'd say there was very little if any coming coming out of that toilet. If you are concerned about it and are not using the toilet you can:

1. Remove the toilet and install a plug in the drain line. Plugs are available in the plumbing dept of most home centers. You just stick the plug in the drain pipe and tighten a wing nut that expands a rubber gasket, sealing to the sides of the pipe.

2. You can pour some water in the toilet once a month to keep the trap full of water.

3. You can get a rubber/vinyl ball and shove it into the toilet's drain hole in the bowl. Make sure the ball conforms to the shape of the hole to seal around the edges and don't shove it in so far that it can't be removed.
Old 06-25-12, 08:42 AM
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Good advice from Dane, I would hope you would implement one of the options as sewer gas can be deadly.

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