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Rick
Rick, Construction Supervisor
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 19554
Experience:  Licensed Master plumber with 40+ yrs. experience.
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Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Plumbing
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
What is your question?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
About 12 months ago I had a licensed plumber with an excellant reputation install an American standard studio activate toilet purchased from Lowes on the 9 th floor of a 12 story condominium. About 4 months ago we started noticing a sewer gas smell emanating from the toilet. The plumber came back and pulled the toilet as part of his investigation and found nothing unusual. He reinstalled the toilet and put in a new wax ring. The smell was gone until I flushed the toilet and then the odors came back. If the toilet is unused for a few days the smell disappears but the minute the toilet is flushed the sewer gas odor returns. Could this be a defective toilet or more likely a problem with the building sewer riser/vent stack?
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
Most likely a problem with the toilet's vent. There really is no path for sewer odor out of a toilet that has water in the bowl. It's also unlikely the odor is coming from the seal at the floor since there would likely also be a water leak associated with a poor seal. The most likely culprit is a break in the toilet vent. Given your description I'd suspect the toilet has it's own individual fixture vent and is not stack vented.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So you think the toilet is defective?
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
That's not what I said. Perhaps I wasn't clear. The likely culprit is the toilet vent. To clarify: the toilet fixture itself has no vent, the toilet vent is piping connected to the toilet drain line which would be concealed in the floor or wall.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So the building vent stack serving my toilet on the 9 th floor is the suspected problem? If that we're the case shouldn't the floors above and below mine also be having sewer gas issues? the building manager says they are not having the same issue as I am.
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
Again not what I said. "Given your description I'd suspect the toilet has it's own individual fixture vent and is not stack vented. "
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
Of course that individual vent would eventually tie into the vent stack.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Also why would the odor only occur when the toilet is flushed
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
The odor only occurs when the toilet is flushed because it has it's own separate vent line. The only way that could be ruled out is if the building manager has access to as built plumbing plans that show this toilet is stack vented. If that is the case then it is possible (but also all but unheard of) that you have some sort of defect in the toilet causing this.