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Question DetailsAsked on 5/3/2015

how do you know that you have adequate vent for sewer pipes. we have gurgling in the bathroom when washer drains.

Also the vent leaks where it connects to the main sewer pipe. It is about a 1" 1\2 vent pipe into a 5 in drain main. We have a septic not city sewer.

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1 Answer


1-1/2" is a pretty standard vent pipe size, so that is probably OK. Unless plumbed wrong there should be no liquid in the vent pipe (rising up into it or coming down it, other than very minor rainfall/snow/frost falling straight down it), so that indicates, since it is leaking at the connection (which obviously should be fixed) probably that you are getting a partial blockage in the sewer run to the septic tank, or tank/leach field is full so is backing up into the sewer pipe. The gurgling you hear is the air being displaced as the liquid fills the pipe up upstream of the blockage or liquid in the septic tank (if overfilled), and as soon as it backs up enough that it submerges the vent pipe fitting the air can't go up there any more, so it pressures up and comes out the sink or tub or floor or whatever drain with the least pressure on it, commonly a shower or tub but sometimes elsewhere, or several at the same time if a large flow is going into it lioke from a washer. Should not happen if vented correctly, but most houses these days basically have the vent pipe only vent gases from the sewer main, and do not properly vent each fixture as they should.

I would check septic tank to see if backing up/overfilled, if that is not problem get sewer pipe routed out and the leak fixed, because this will almost cetainly not go away, and can go to a full blockage at aly time. Below is a link to another similar question earlier today where I explained (along with another link within the reply) in more detail why you are getting gurgling in the bathroom drains and how to tie down where the blockage is -

Answered 5 years ago by LCD

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