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Any plumbers?.... sewer smell

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by jeffd, Nov 11, 2007.

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  1. jeffd

    jeffd New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    Virginia
    I've lived in this house 2 years. Has septic system. 1 acre lot. When it begins getting cold and through the cold season there is sewer smell outside right around the house. Neighbors claim they caon't smell it. I've looked and there doesn't apper to be any septic issues with my or neighbor's systems (no standing funky sewer anywhere, no swampy areas on lots).

    A little research suggests my vent stack may be too short. I can't find data on how long it should be.
    Does it sound possible that this is the cause? How long should it be?

    TIA,
    Jeff

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  2. Sandor

    Sandor Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2005
    Messages:
    917
    Loc:
    Deltaville,VA
    The vent stack height usually is high enough so it will not get covered over by snow. I usually do 16 inches in VA.

    And yes, its certainly possible that your getting a whiff of whats coming out of that. Happens around my house once in awhile, usually when the barometer is falling, or its getting colder out and the air is sinking.
  3. jeffd

    jeffd New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    Virginia
    Thanks. 16" doesn't seem very high to me. Guess I'll get up there and check it out later today. Deltaville - been there a few times!
  4. triptester

    triptester Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2006
    Messages:
    267
    Loc:
    S.E.Wisconsin
    Had the same problem at my cottage. When the wind blew in the right direction the smell in the front yard was ripe.It had a PVC vent stack to which I added coupling and a short piece of pipe to get height above the roof peak.
    The smell hasn't been back. Someday I may go back on the roof and glue up the coupling and pipe.
  5. wahoowad

    wahoowad Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2005
    Messages:
    1,498
    Loc:
    Virginia
    How ironic, I caught a whiff of the sewer smell today while moving some splits. I was right next to the drain field of my property. I feel like I only smell it when it is damp outside and always assumed it was septic gases/liquids percolating up through the damp soil? So you are suggesting it is flowing down off the roof from the vent pipe?
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