What to Do If Your Bathroom Smells Like a Sewer
Tuesday, August 18, 2015 - 10:20am
Unpleasant odours in the bathroom aren’t too unusual, but the smell of sewage when no one has even been in there is cause for concern. Not only is the smell tough to handle, but there is obviously a reason it is happening, and you may need to take quick action to correct it.
Common Reasons for Bathroom Sewage Smell
If your bathroom smells like a sewer, the first order of business is to find out why. If the bathroom is a guest bathroom and isn’t used often, the water in the p-trap may have evaporated and allowed gases to escape from the toilet. A leak in the p-trap might lower the water level to a point that it can’t prevent gases from escaping. Sewer gases can also seep out if there is a broken seal under the toilet, if a vent pipe is blocked or if the bolts that attach the toilet to the floor are damaged. These gases can be quite dangerous, so it’s important to take safety precautions if you notice a sewage smell on your bathroom.
Addressing the Issue Yourself
If you insist on the DIY approach, make sure you use a respirator to avoid inhaling sewer gases as you inspect the toilet and surrounding area. It’s also crucial that you don’t use anything that could possibly cause a spark, because methane is highly combustible. If there is a high level of hydrogen sulfide in the sewer gases, your eyes and respiratory system may become seriously irritated and the exposure could be fatal without the proper ventilation.
Leaving the Job to Pros
Most of the time, leaving the job to professionals is the best way to go. The safety issues aren’t worth saving a few dollars or being able to say you did it on your own. In some cases, the sewer smell in your bathroom will only require a quick fix, but as a homeowner, you won’t know if it is a minor issue or a serious one.
If your bathroom smells like a sewer and it isn’t used very often, try flushing the toile t a couple times to get the water flowing and keep the sewer gases away. If a bathroom that’s in regular use smells like a sewer, call your local plumber to come and assess the situation before you end up breathing in dangerous gases and hurting yourself. Just explain the situation when you call, and we will take it from there.