Wet crawl space unsafe to enter (C) Daniel Friedman Sewer Line Leak Odors:
Diagnose and Cure Sewer Gas Smells Due to Sewer Line Leaks & Septic Tank Problems

  • DRAIN LINE PIPE LEAKS - CONTENTS: How to detect, diagnose, and cure smells, odors, gases from leaky sewer lines or sewage piping, and sewage backups indoors or outside. How septic tank problems such as over-use or acidity can cause sewage odors.
  • POST a QUESTION or READ FAQs about troubleshooting sewer gas smells & sewer or septic pipe leaks

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Drain & sewer line leak & odor diagnosis & repair:

How to prevent or cure sewer gas odors from septic systems, building plumbing, & other causes. Sewer gas smell diagnosis - plumbing checklist. Septic gas smell diagnosis - septic system checklist

This article describes how to diagnose, find, and cure odors in buildings including septic or sewage or sewer gas smells or "gas odors" in buildings.

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Septic System or Sewer Piping Blockage or Failure Can Produce Sewer or Septic Gases Outdoors OR Indoors

Photograph of septic dye breaking out on the surface of a yard during septic testing and inspection

Our sewer gas odor diagnosis discussed here focuses on homes with a private onsite septic tank but including tips for owners whose home is connected to a sewer system as well. What makes the smell in sewer gas? Sewer gases are more than an obnoxious odor. Readers should be sure to also see SEWER GAS ODORS.

Watch out: Because sewer gas contains methane gas (CH4) there is a risk of an explosion hazard or even fatal asphyxiation. Sewer gases also probably contain hydrogen sulfide gas (H2S) In addition some writers opine that there are possible health hazards from sewer gas exposure, such as a bacterial infection of the sinuses (which can occur due to any sinus irritation).

Depending on the sewer gas source and other factors such as humidity and building and weather conditions, mold spores may also be present in sewer gases. Also see Wet Weather or Cold Weather Septic Odors or Sewage Odor Diagnosis & Repair Guide for additional odor tracing and cure advice for odors occurring during wet or cold weather.

Inspect the septic system for evidence of failure: our photo shows green septic dye in the yard during a septic loading and dye test.

If the sewer or gas odor or smell is strongest outside, and if you rule out an unusual site shape or wind blowing odors down from your plumbing vent system, your septic system may be failing.

Sewage odors may be noticed from a failing drainfield even if at the moment you don't see a wet or soggy area which shows actual sewage effluent on the yard surface.

If this is the case you may want to request a septic system inspection as well as a tank pumpout and inspection afterwards.

See Cold Weather Septic Odors or Sewage Odor Diagnosis which also discusses sewer gas odors that can occur when a drain or septic system are partly blocked or sluggish. Also see Septic System Safety.

This Australian septic system advice was paraphrased/near-quoted from advice given by Adelaide Hills Council, Australia.

In some areas such as South Australia, aerobic wastewater treatment is used to treat effluent to a sufficient level of sanitation that it can be used for irrigation within the property - in other words it is dispersed on the soil for the purpose of both disposal and for irrigation.


Continue reading at SEWAGE BACKUP, WHAT TO DO or select a topic from closely-related articles below, or see our complete INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES below.


Or see SEWER GAS ODORS - home

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