In addition to being extremely unpleasant, sewer gas can also be very harmful when it is inhaled for long periods of time. If you have recently noticed this unpleasant odor in your home, then you need to take action right away. Those smells are often the results of major plumbing problems that must be addressed immediately.
Loose Sewer Trap Plugs
Even though every sink in your home should have a trap, most modern homes have larger sewage line traps as well. Those traps are closed off with relatively wide plugs, and the plugs prevent water and sewer gas from escaping. When the plugs don’t seal correctly, sewer gas will leak back into the home. Luckily, replacing a sewer trap plug is a simple job that shouldn’t take more than a few minutes, and you probably won’t need any special tools or equipment.
Cracked Sewage Line
Your primary sewage line flushes away all of the waste that your home produces, and it connects directly to the city’s sewer system. Unfortunately, sewage pipe cracks are somewhat common, and only an experienced plumbing contractor should repair that type of damage. For relatively small cracks, the plumber might be able to dig around the pipe and patch the outside. If the damage is severe, then the contractor will most likely need to excavate the area and replace the pipe entirely.
Clogged Sewage Line
Practically every homeowner will have to deal with a clogged sewage line at some point over the years. These pipes are designed to withstand quite a bit of abuse, but they can become clogged when family members flush or rinse away certain items. As a general rule, you should never let any hygiene products or food scraps get into your plumbing system. To dislodge that material, your plumber will need to clean out the pipe with a powerful pressure washer.
Damaged Drain Traps
Drain traps are your first line of defense against sewer gasses, and that equipment isn’t going to last forever. Over the years, drain traps will often shift around or become clogged with hardened deposits of food. Those traps can usually be removed and cleaned with nothing more than a few basic tools. Before you check your drain traps, you should always turn off the water supply to your home and unplug any garbage disposals.
In addition to these four potential problems, you might also want to take a look at your toilets. After years of use, toilets can become dislodged, and the sewer gas could be the result of a damaged wax ring or cracked caulk.