Sewage smell in basement

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Euston, Jun 13, 2019.

Help Support Plumbing Forums by donating:

  1. Jun 13, 2019 #1

    Euston

    Euston

    Euston

    Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2019
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    SW Florida
    My nephew has a sewage smell in his basement.
    Has anyone used one of those inexpensive gas detectors?
     
  2. Jun 15, 2019 #2

    frodo

    frodo

    frodo

    Just call me Macgyver Professional Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2014
    Messages:
    7,509
    Likes Received:
    2,347
    Location:
    ,
    I use my nose.

    look for a drain of some sort, most likely it is a dry ptrap
     
  3. Sep 10, 2019 #3

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    1,637
    Likes Received:
    284
    Location:
    North Reading, Mass.
    I know your question is on "inexpensive gas detectors", however, for what it's worth,
    Possible sources within a basement would typically be...
    Floor drains in the basement?
    Sink drain
    Washing machine standpipe.
    As touched upon above, anything that would have a trap that may have dried up.

    Or you could use frodo's nose, since the sewer gas may contain hydrogen sulfide, ammonia, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen, and hydrogen and is immune to these.
     
  4. Sep 10, 2019 #4

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2019
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    38
    Location:
    Chicago suburbs
    Could easily be just a dead mouse.

    They stink pretty bad for a few days til they dry up.

    The smell gets trapped down there.

    As has been said, most likely a dry trap is letting the stink out, but it could also be a natural gas smell. Maybe a pilot light is blown out.
     
  5. Sep 10, 2019 #5

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    1,637
    Likes Received:
    284
    Location:
    North Reading, Mass.
    Hopefully there aren't many gas pilot devices still around that don't automatically shut the gas valve when the pilot goes out.
     
  6. Sep 10, 2019 #6

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2019
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    38
    Location:
    Chicago suburbs
    Both my old gas stove, and really old furnace, would let a small amount of gas leak out for awhile, when the pilot went out.

    I know when the pilot stops heating the thermocouple the gas should cut right out, but my furnace still leaked enough gas to alert me by the stink.

    I finally replaced it, when the heat exchanger rusted out.

    And my old stove did not have a thermocouple, at least on the top burners, anyway.
    Each side had a pilot, and if either one blew out, very slight gas kept coming until I re-lit it.
    After airing out the kitchen, of course.

    Plenty of folks have moved an old stove to the basement for extra cooking, like for Thanksgiving, or to use in summer to avoid heating up the upstairs.

    When I was growing up, they used to call that a “wop kitchen”, sorry no offense meant just passing on what I heard it called.
     
  7. Sep 10, 2019 #7

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    1,637
    Likes Received:
    284
    Location:
    North Reading, Mass.
    Yes I remember those old gas stoves with the pilots and no thermocouple. Back in those days the houses were so drafty you were lucky if you could detect it.
    I am Italian and have heard a lot, but never heard of “wop kitchen”. But come to think of it, my father did have a small gas stove in the cellar. I believe he used it for canning/jarring his garden grown tomatoes. :)
     
  8. Sep 10, 2019 #8

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2019
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    38
    Location:
    Chicago suburbs
    My grandparents all lived in Chicago, west side.
    In a mostly Irish/Italian neighborhood.
    I’m sure that is where I heard that phrase.
    It was never used as a putdown, just a casual reference to Italians having an old stove in the basement for summer cooking, or holidays.

    The world was not at all PC back then, and people had thicker skins, much less self-filtering of casual conversation was expected.

    PS They were all Irish, so they might have not used it around any Italian neighbors. Maybe that is also why you never heard it, to avoid offending your family even though it seemed like a fairly harmless term to me, at the time.
     
  9. Sep 10, 2019 #9

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Jeff Handy

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2019
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    38
    Location:
    Chicago suburbs
    My mom was a little girl when her mother announced that “The degos” had just moved into the apartment a few doors down, and they had some kids around her age.

    So Mom went over there, rang the bell, and the lady of the house answered.

    My mom asked, “Can any of the Degos come out and play?”
    She thought that was their family name!

    She got a slap in the face, and the door slammed for a send-off!

    True story.
     
  10. Sep 10, 2019 #10

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Diehard

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    1,637
    Likes Received:
    284
    Location:
    North Reading, Mass.
    LOL
    Must have been second generation Italians. My parents came over from the old country and I don't think they even knew what that word meant.(Dagos)
    Funny!
     

Share This Page