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Why My House Smells When It Rains


  Sep 8 2020

Why My House Smells When It Rains

Rain is supposed to wash away dirt, clean the air, and supply plants and trees with much needed water. However, when your home is not in its best shape, rain can make it feel like you are living in a hut. If instead of smelling fresh and renewed, your house smells like sewage when it rains, then this article is for you. The professionals at Leak Detection of Atlanta have years of experience with this subject matter and we are more than happy to share some tips and guidance on how you can maneuver through this inconvenience. If you would like to hire professionals, then call Leak Detection of Atlanta to get leak repair and detection service in your area.

The Big “Why”

Sure, if you have just used the restroom and it smells awful in the house, it makes sense for the place to smell. But, why would there be a sewer smell in the house after a perfectly good rain? Well, we have some usual suspects:

  • Sewer Trap: The sewer system is filled with bacteria and decomposing waste. The mixture, combined with moisture, can produce a terrible smelling odor. This gas is usually stuck in the sewer trap, but it can escape if the sewer trap is not properly sealed.
  • Water Barrier: If you have ever looked at the base of your toilet, then you probably noticed the u-shaped sewer trap. In this section is water that acts as a barrier preventing gases from getting to your home. If you have a fixture in your home that you rarely use, then this barrier can dry out, exposing your home to those stinky odors. A leak in this sewer trap can also lead to the same problem.
  • Water & Air Pressure: When it pours, the rainwater will fill anywhere it can get into. Generally, this is the sewers. As water collects, the gases are pushed to the top.

Other Causes of Sewer Smells

The previous explanations are more in line with rain acting as a catalyst for the smell, however, there are other causes of sewer smells. Granted, these sources can smell with or without rainwater triggering anything.

  • Cracked Pipes: Gases can easily leak out of cracked pipes and into your home.
  • Leaks: If wastewater and sewage is leaking out of the pipes, then you can bet that the smell will follow.
  • Clogged Drains: If sewage and organic debris is clogging your drains, then you can bet that those fumes will find their way up the drains and into your home.

Are These Gases Dangerous?

Sewer gases are not just odorous and rancid. Breathing sewer gas can, in fact, be dangerous for your health. This is because sewer gas contains a mixture of hydrogen sulfide, methane, ammonia, carbon dioxide, and other harmful compounds. Some symptoms of exposure to sewer gas include:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Poor Concentration & Memory
  • Fatigue
  • Pink Eye
  • Mouth, Throat, Lung, & Eye Irritation
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