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Why Is There A Sewer Smell In My Basement?

What’s that smell? Why does it smell like a sewer as you walk down into your basement?

Nothing can be more gut-wrenching than thinking sewer waste may be backing up into your home. That can involve a whole host of remediation needs, costing you both in expense and time for recovery.Why Is There A Sewer Smell In My Basement?

Even if it smells funny, don’t panic yet. In a lot of cases, a sewer smell doesn’t always mean raw sewage has made its way into your home. It might be from one of these things instead.

Problems with the basement floor drain

Basements have a floor drain in case of overflow. Because they are rarely used, they are often the source of sewer smells. These floor drains are designed to trap a small amount of water as a seal, so that sewer gases won’t leak back into the home. Over time, this seal can open up for a variety of reasons, including little use. This releases sewer gases into the basement.

The easiest way to solve the issue is to pour a gallon of clean water down the drain to keep it working.

There are several different types of basement floor drains that can alleviate this problem in your basement. If your basement floor drain is giving you more issues than it should, consider replacing it. 

Problems with the vents

Does your home have a partially finished basement? Is the laundry room downstairs? Do you have a rarely used bathroom? Sometimes these fixtures aren’t properly vented, which can allow sewer gases to move back into the air supply.

Confirm that all basement fixtures and appliances are properly vented and in good working condition. If everything appears to be working in the basement, you should also check other fixtures and appliances on other levels, as sometimes they can be the cause of problems.

Problems with the sewer line

Sewer lines will not exist indefinitely without problems. Over time, age, general usage, landscaping issues, and more can damage the sewer line. When this happens, if the leak is close to your home, waste water can leak into the ground and make its way into the sump pump in your basement.

If you discover a leak, its best to call in a professional immediately. The first task is to discover where the leak originates to fix the problem. From there, cleanup is needed to ensure the safety of everyone in your family.

Have a question about a sewer smell? Give us a call today.

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