Fix Sewer Smell Coming From Unused Toilet

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by andreaarden, Jul 16, 2007.

  1. andreaarden

    andreaarden New Member

    Jul 16, 2007
    Several years ago, I stupidly turned off the water in my rarely-used upstairs guest room toilet because it was "running" and I didn't have time to fix it. I didn't know until now that a dry trap would allow sewer gas to pass into the house, which seems to be what has happened.

    I want to put the toilet back into working order myself if possible (I think it just needs a new fill valve/flapper kit), but is there anything else that needs to be done to fix the dry trap problem besides just turning the water on?

    In case it might be relevant, there's also a shower in that bathroom and another toilet on that floor that haven't been used for a long time, but I don't think there's any sewer gas coming from them. There are other water fixtures on the second floor which are used often, including a bathtub and clothes washer; and all of the water fixtures located on the first floor are used daily.

    Thanks in advance for your help,

  2. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Sep 1, 2004
    Yakima WA
    When you fill the toilet with water, that will fill its trap. If you are going to be delayed in getting the fill valve changed, you can fill the toilet bowl (trap) with a bucket of water. That will stop the sewer gas. Other traps can be fill the same way.
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  4. andreaarden

    andreaarden New Member

    Jul 16, 2007
    Fix for Dry Toilet Trap

    Thanks! All my problems should be so easy to fix! :) I have one more question: To help get rid of the smell, is it OK to pour full-strength bleach into the toilet? Or, down a shower drain?

    Thanks again,

  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    You may not need any bleach if you fill the traps...try that first. Then, try a little won't need much. If you have a septic system, it won't like a lot of bleach.
  6. geniescience

    geniescience Homeowner

    Nov 27, 2005
    humid summers hot, humid winters cold
    one fix only, at a time. Then move on to the next method, after seeing what the first method does to fix the problem.

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