Septic Sewer Smell in Bathroom

Old 03-03-10, 08:22 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: SO MO
Posts: 93
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Septic Sewer Smell in Bathroom

We have a septic system that was totally redone a few years ago. This morning after using shower a sewer smell has developed in the bathroom. This was the second time this shower has been used in a few years. Wife think smell is coming from sink. So after some research I saw that the overflow hole in sink might need cleaned. 1. What is a safe solution to use to clean it out as I read do not use bleach if one has a septic tank? 2. Could the smell be from the fact that this shower has had extrememly little use in the last 5 years? 3. I am sure the P-Trap dried out on the thing but why the smell after day 2 of use? No smell at all until started using shower in that bathroom. Bathroom itself-toilet/sink has been used on a regular basis as it is our only one. Thanks!
Old 03-04-10, 02:54 PM
Temporarily Suspended
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: NY
Posts: 10,265
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
What is directly below that shower? Are there any signs of leaks?
Old 03-04-10, 03:49 PM
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 7,826
Upvotes: 0
Received 1 Upvote on 1 Post
Maybe gook had collected and caked on the walls of the shower drain pipe in the past. And now when you ran it, especially after you shut off the water, and the water finished draining down the drainpipe, the water in the drain was tight up against the gook - and then as the water moved down the line, it pulled water out of the trap.

Take the cover off the shower pan and see. First look at where the water level is. Measure the depth to the top of the water. Now pour in some water, wait a few seconds, then remeasure, and see if the water level is now higher. If it is, then you indeed lost water out of the trap during or after the shower had run, allowing sewer gas to enter.

Now just because a trap goes dry doesn't always automatically mean you are going to smell the sewer. The air pressure between what is in the sewer pipe and the house has to be so there is greater pressure in the pipe than in the house.

Or it could be as Pulpo suggests, and trap is dry because of that.

For other people that have phantom bathroom sewer gas smells, besides checking traps, get on hands and knees and smell where toilet bowl and floor meet. A bad wax seal can let out sewer gas, yet not leak water!

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title: