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1
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1answer
270 views

Why would a bathroom emit an odor if pipes aren't clogged?

House has crawl space and the pipes aren't clogged, yet bathroom has stench that wasn't there yesterday. Only thing different today than yesterday is that it's raining today. Why would stench all of a ...
2
votes
2answers
5k views

What could be causing the low water level in my shower trap?

I have a tri-level home with a shower on the lowest floor. When I noticed that the bathroom smelled like rotten eggs, I shined my flashlight down the shower drain and saw that the water level was low ...
3
votes
1answer
7k views

How many vent stacks should a house have?

I just purchased a 1948 pier-and-beam in Austin. The pest control guy came to deal with rats, and asked me to locate my vent stacks. We seem to have one for the washing machine, but none is visible ...
8
votes
3answers
10k views

Why is sewage backing up from this outdoor pipe?

I just recently moved into my first house this morning and when I went outside I noticed this: What happened? What should I do? I have no idea what that pipe even is. I don't believe there is a ...
6
votes
4answers
25k views

Can rock salt be used for sewer maintenance?

I have read that flushing a glass full of rock salt down your toilet every month is good practice if you have a cast iron sewer line. Reason being is that the salt will kill off any tree roots in the ...
3
votes
5answers
6k views

Is cleaning out the main sewer line a regular scheduled maintenance item?

I just had to have my main sewer line snaked, and the technician said it should be done once every 2 years. Is this really the case, or was he just trying to insure he has job security?
5
votes
1answer
4k views

What alternative methods exist to correct a belly in a clay sewer line?

In the first 18 months of living in my house, I've already had 4 sewage backups in my basement. Luckily the basement is not finished and I've caught the backup each time before it became a large ...
1
vote
5answers
8k views

Can I cut or cover a sewer cleanout pipe in front of my house?

I have a PVC pipe sticking up in front of my house, in a flower-bed area. It's 20 inches high and 5 inches in diameter. As I understand, it is a sewer clean-out pipe. It's rather unsightly and I've ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

How can I fix the sewer smell in my bathroom?

After several hours and no use, the bathroom accumulates some noticeable "sewer gas" smell, with kind of garlic. It is gone after a few minutes when the ventilating fan is turned on. The bathroom and ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

How can one test a sewage ejector pump?

I have a sewer ejector pump in my basement but it's in a sealed well. There are two electric cords running into it. How does one test it? For maintenance reasons. Can this only be done by a plumber? ...
2
votes
2answers
548 views

Weird problem with kitchen sink water flow

I've had this problem for years and have learned to live with it, but today I got an idea to ask it here. My kitchen sink has a problem where the water flows away from it slower than it flows into ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

What to do when sewer backs up

What should I do when a (house's main) sewer backs up? How can I make it not back up, or at least stop it from backing up more once it has already started backing up?
1
vote
2answers
761 views

How should I terminate a black plastic drain pipe?

I'm removing a flush toilet, with the plan to put a composting toilet in its place. The old toilet was short but elevated on a small platform. The new toilet is taller, so I'm removing the platform. ...
4
votes
1answer
387 views

How is a septic system different from a cesspool?

Here in New England many towns do not have public sewer systems, so homeowners have either a septic system or a cesspool. What is the difference between the two?