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Volterra55
Question:Plumbing vent on flat roof home has standing water......
Volterra55

Hello,
Hoping to find some guidance.
I have a flat roof home with a commercial roof system (home built in 1957 and 98% of the home and systems have been updated, remodeled or are new). Last week while checking on workers performing tuck pointing on the furnace chimney I surveyed my vents and general condition of the roof since I was up there.
I noticed that one of two plumbing vents (workman told me that is what it was) had standing water. The water is about 6 inches down from the top of the pipe. The second plumbing vent pipe has no water.
I did some google searches and found that standing water is not desirable. There is a small bathroom below the plumbing vent and a laundry room adjacent to that. Neither has a plugged drain nor any indication of a slow drain, or gurgling etc. Laundry room washer is used daily and the above mentioned bathroom's toilet and sink are the most frequently used fixtures in that room.
So I went on the roof with a long extension pole and put it down the vent. It met resistance about 2-3 inches below the water. The water is brownish, either from dirt or ??. I pushed the pole against the blockage and it broke up the blockage. However the water did not drain or change level at all.
So I went on youtube for guidance and decided to order an auger. Received the auger and went up on the roof again with auger in hand and my hose. The auger extended about 9 feet before hitting something. Nothing I did was able to get through the blockage. It could have even been sheet metal for the all I know and based on the type of resistance I felt.
I then for the heck of it put the hose in the drain and it just filled up. It did not drain so now the vent is full of brown murky water. Guess the next step is a plumber (?) but can anyone venture a guess on what is happening? Can a vent be closed off if there is another one 25 feet away? Over the years we have had plumbers out here for blockage in other bathrooms and no one has ever asked to go on the roof to look at the plumbing vent. Should that be standard procedure that I expect from a plumber? Thank you,

A. Spruce
Re: Question:Plumbing vent on flat roof home has standing water......
A. Spruce

A blocked vent is not a good thing. It is possible, though not likely, that this vent was abandoned during other remodeling projects. It is very possible that when the roof was replaced, debris from the old roof found its way down the vent pipe.

Ultimately, you will likely need a plumber to come out and diagnose/repair the problem, which will likely be to snake the vent down through the rest of the system.

ed21
Re: Question:Plumbing vent on flat roof home has standing water......
ed21

If a plumber cleared the blockage, I wouldn't expect him to go on the roof.

bill
Re: Question:Plumbing vent on flat roof home has standing water......
bill

You will need a plumber, and he has to go up on the roof and pass the snake from there. It would also be a advisable to run water down the vent at the same time so that is washes the debris all the way to the street and not reform some where else. I have seen this before , it was leaves that accumulated over a very long time. check to see if trees near by are the cause.

Bill

RobmanQ
Re: Question:Plumbing vent on flat roof home has standing water......
RobmanQ

The blockage is probably from nearby acorns, leaves, or debris. Consider using a cap for the roof vent. Just make sure you do not decrease the cross section of the vent. There are mushroom type vents available that do not violate code regulations.

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