18 August 2014

A stinky investigation

With my in-laws' anniversary party on the forefront of my mind, not a lot of house stuff got done in the past couple of months, not even regular housekeeping tasks. It took me almost a week, but things are now back to their normal state of disarray. I've been able to get a couple of little things done here and there. When I was installing the crown moulding in the back bedroom, I had to take down the attic hatch access door

When the door was off, I noticed a sewer gas smell coming from the attic. There was always a small odor around the bathroom, but I figured it was just because there was no water in the traps to prevent sewer gas from coming up. But this was a very strong smell, so I climbed up to investigate. This is what I found: 

Sewer gas venting into attic

Sorry about the terrible picture. I was trying to balance on the joists and not fall through the ceiling while snapping this shot. In case it's hard to see, the elbow is not attached to the (stinky) pipe at all, so sewer gas was just getting dumped into the attic instead of through the roof. I did a dry fit to see if I could just push the elbow down back onto the pipe, but that wouldn't work. The vertical portion of pipe was cut badly on an angle, and the elbow that connected to it was rotated out slightly. The result was that the pipe was never seated in the elbow very well. Even when it was seated as far as it would go, there was still a gap between the pipe and the elbow because of the angled cut. Our plumber extraordinaire strikes again. I simply cut off the elbow, straightened the cut on the vertical pipe, and glued in another elbow. Miraculously, an elbow with a longer sweep angle fit perfectly. Only a half an hour from start to finish, and most importantly, no more smell! 

Before I enlisted Tom's help to re-hang the attic access door, I primed and painted it flat ceiling white. Now it's back up and finishing the 1x2 frame around the door is the next project. Well, it's another project, not necessarily the next one.  

I probably should have painted the edges too, but the trim will cover those. This picture also shows the finished crown moulding, still in need of a coat of paint. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow. Not a good surprise. Good thing you found it and were able to fix it. Way to go!