Does your toilet gurgle when you flush? Or afterwards, do funny noises come from it? Chances are there is something wrong with the venting in your plumbing system. The plumbing in your house or apartment is made up of several components – the water supply coming in, the drain pipe for used water, and the venting stack. It’s something most homeowners don’t pay too much attention to – until there are problems.
The proper name for the drain system that takes care of your toilet is the drain-waste-vent system. The tell-tale gurgle usually means that the balance of air and runoff in the drain system is not being maintained.
When you flush the toilet, the waste and water has to go down the pipe. It needs somewhere to go – and air is displaced, using the vent stack in your home. A vent stack in the basement is pictured to the right – it rises through the home or condo building to the roof, where vented air is released.
To the left is a diagram of a house venting system.
Well, now that you know you may have a problem with your venting system, what can you do about it? If you are an ambitious DIYer, you can go up on the roof to inspect the vent to make sure it is still venting to the outside (perhaps the screen is closed off). You can also inspect the venting wherever it’s visible, for improperly installed joints, cracks in the piping, and other obvious flaws. It’s worth spending some time on – dangerous sewer smells can be escaping into your home.
If you’d rather not do it yourself, call Jake the Plumber to get a professional fix to your venting system – 651-212-5253.