There might be one or more sinks in your house that are currently clogged. If so, you should probably examine your drain, however, if you came to a conclusion that everything is fine with it, it is probably the best time to take a peek upwards rather than downward. Why? Well, the vent pipe might be blocked instead.

When the drain system malfunctions, it can cause various problems in your house such as poor drainage or ‘ghost’ flushing. And, if this is happening to you, you’re probably wondering – how can I verify that my vent duct is obstructed? Well, let’s take a closer look at the signs it might be clogged, as well as what you might want to do to take care of the problem:

How Does The System Work?


In order for you to unclog the tubing, you’ll need to learn how it works. A vent pipe or as it’s also commonly referred to as a plumbing drain is installed to regulate the airflow in your plumbing system. It’ll help you with removing any unpleasant smells or gas that commonly occur in tubes.

This means that it’ll allow fresh air into the pipes, hence, it’ll stop any odor from occurring, but more importantly, it’ll ensure that the water flows smoothly throughout your residence. You’ll be able to locate it on your roofline and it’ll resemble an upright tube going into the roof.

The entire channel operates together with the sewerage channels, meaning that when they carry waste from your residence, the vent tubes will provide clean air to the connections, hence, they could repeat the same task and proceed to remove the waste. These two things have important roles in keeping your home odor-free, so if they get obstructed, you’ll need to solve the issue instantly.

What Are The Most Common Signs of Blockage?

So, since you now know how it functions, you must learn more about the most common signs of an obstructed system in order to ensure that it’s actually malfunctioning. So, the 3 most common signs of this particular problem are:

1. Strong And Unpleasant Odor


If you started noticing a strong and unpleasant odor coming from your toilet or sink, it’s a pretty good sign that there is an issue with the vent duct tubing. After all, one of the main tasks of this system is to stop odor from spreading, so, when you notice the smells, it’s time to examine it.

Keep in mind, if there is an obstruction, the gases cannot escape from your house, which means that they’re returning back to your living areas through the drains. Yes, the smell will be quite unpleasant, however, there is a bigger problem – the methane. Trust me, you don’t want to be breathing it in since it could cause carbon monoxide poisoning.

2. Bubbling Sinks, Drains, And Toilets

After you flush, did you notice a bubbling sound coming from the toiler, drains, or sink? If so, this could mean that the air cannot escape from the drain, meaning that it’ll try and go through the closest openings, which are your sinks, drains, and toilets. If you notice such issues, you might want to opt for professional services such as Lucas Plumbing.

3. Poor Drainage


We already mentioned at the beginning of this article that poor drainage could occur due to various reasons, however, one of those reasons is a clogged drainage tube. Again, this is something that will occur if the entire system is obstructed or if it cannot properly regulate the air pressure.

So, How Can I Fix it?

When it comes to fixing the problems with the drain, there are only two options that you could choose from:

1. DIY Repairs


The first thing you could do is to choose to repair it by yourself. If so, you’ll need to begin the process by cleaning all of the trash from the system. Keep in mind, you’ll want to utilize a flashlight to examine the tube as far as you can, and if you notice a blockage, but cannot get to it, utilize a plumber’s snake and place it down the tube.

However, the process doesn’t stop there. You’ll need to utilize a gardening hose and place it in the channel and then ask someone to switch on the water since you’ll need to hold the hose. Listen closely if the water is backing up or if there is a whoosh as the water pushes the blockage down the tube.

2. A Professional Repair

If you don’t know what the issue is, if you feel uncomfortable working at heights, or if you don’t believe you have the skills or knowledge for the task, you could always choose to call a specialist that’ll be able to take care of the issue right away. But, besides helping you with the problem, there are other benefits of hiring a skilled plumber.

For starters, they’ll have all the necessary tools and equipment, which means that you won’t need to buy what you don’t own, hence, it can save you some money. Additionally, instead of you spending an hour or two figuring out what the issue is, the plumber will probably know what is causing the obstructions right away, meaning that you could also save time.

Last, but not least important is safety. If you don’t feel comfortable climbing the roof or if you never did something like this before, it is always wiser to hire a licensed company. A plumber will have years and years of practice, hence, you could keep yourself safe.



If you start noticing that your drains aren’t working properly, that there is an unpleasant odor coming from your sinks or toilets, or if there is a bubbling sound after your flush, you should immediately examine your vent pipe. Doing this will help you with stopping any additional damage, all of which can result in some expensive repairs.

So, now that you’re aware of how this important system works, as well as what you might need to do to fix it, you shouldn’t waste any more of your time. Instead, you should determine whether or not the system needs to be repaired, and then start searching for an expert that will take care of the problem.