How To Use the Smoke Test to Find a Sewer Smell

how to use the smoke test to find a sewer smell

Plug Your Nose!

It’s never a fun time to have a sewer smell in your home or business. Sewer smells, especially a rotten egg smell in your home, can signify a drain line issue that is causing a sewer gas leak in your sewer system. Because a plumbing system is a large framework of sewer lines, it’s not easy to DIY the source of the leak. Fortunately, expert plumbers know of the best leak detection technology to find the sewer gas odor source: Smoke Testing.

What is a Sewer Smoke Test?

Smoke testing is a method that plumbing companies and their plumbers use to identify a sewer gas leak. Smoke testing uses smoke and air to flow through a plumbing system to identify any leaks or broken pipes.

Smoke testing work begins with a plumber sealing up most of the exposed floor drains, sewer pipes, etc. After the drains have been sealed, the plumber will then use a connection to the main sewer line, where an attached smoke blower can be placed. Once secured, the smoke blower will blow non-toxic smoke from a smoke machine or smoke canister throughout the sewer main line. As the smoke is being displaced throughout the system, the smoke will be pushed with enough force that will allow the smoke to be released from the problem area. The plumber will then monitor all of the sealed drains and pipes and look for any smoke release, bubbling of the seal, or other identifiers.

The smoke test is an ideal technique for plumbers to quickly and efficiently find the sewer problem without tearing walls apart or ruining any landscaping. It’s a fast, efficient, and cost-effective test if done right!

What a Sewer Smoke Test Detects

A smoke test can be used to identify several problem areas/plumbing system issues that don’t require immediate attention. Smoke testing can also be utilized in discovering issues with a septic tank, water tank, or even HVAC system leaks. Specific areas a smoke test can detect include:

  • Gas smells
  • Gas line issues
  • Septic tank smells
  • Faulty Toilet/Tub installations
  • Cracked/broken sewer pipes
  • Dry traps
  • Defective p traps
  • Discarded floor drains
  • Water leaks/pipe leaks

Ask a plumber for a smoke test today if you are experiencing any of the above issues! Using this cost-effective and efficient method in your system is best before tearing up any parts of your home or building.

At Smedley Plumbing, we know the value of quality plumbing services, and we aim to ensure every job we do is done right the first time. As a homeowner, it’s in your best interest to have a trusted plumber use the most efficient and cost-effective methods when handling your plumbing issues!

We offer drain cleaning services, mainline cleanouts, water heater repair and installation, and other common plumbing system issues. If you have any questions or plumbing problems, you should call Smedley!

Smoke Test In Action!

We’ve just shown up at a local car dealer in town that’s going through some remodeling. They’ve had a concern about sewer odors in their system. We’re going to learn exactly what the cause of the sewer smell is.

Another successful service call. We were able to identify the cause of their sewer odor. Ironically they’re already halfway through fixing it. It was actually fixture-related with some of the old toilets that they had installed. We coached the plumbers on the job on how to set the toilets so that they won’t have the sewer smell.