Chemical smell under tub

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum' started by kjw, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. Jan 30, 2013 #1

    kjw

    kjw

    kjw

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    I have been searching all over the internet for someone that might have the same issue we are having in our bathroom. Our house was built in 1968 and the tub is quite possibly the original tub. Anyhow, it appears that a very glossy black sealant was poured into the open area of the foundation where the tub's trap is located. Its poured about 2 inches thick and is very solid. The chemical smell is somewhat similar to an asphalt sealant that you might use on your roof.

    Anyhow, when you open the tub access door, the smell about knocks you down. Its almost as bad with the access door taped shut. I've tried deoderizers with no luck. Does anyone have any suggestions? They'd be much appreciated.
     
  2. Jan 30, 2013 #2

    oldognewtrick

    oldognewtrick

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    Is there any way you could take a heavy plastic sheet and tape it to some structure to seal it off?

    Oh, and :welcome: to House Repair Talk!
     
  3. Jan 30, 2013 #3

    nealtw

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    If it is below the surface of the concrete, perhaps you could put some poly on it and top it up with concrete.
     
  4. Jan 30, 2013 #4

    inspectorD

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    I would try some stainbocker paint, or even some vehicle undercoating which is along the rubberized version. The stuff you are talking about was made from coal....Olddog probably remebers some roofs he did back in the day.
     
  5. Jan 30, 2013 #5

    oldognewtrick

    oldognewtrick

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    I remembner Pitch all to well...:eek:
     
  6. Jan 30, 2013 #6

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    Could have been left over foundation waterproofing.
     
  7. Jan 30, 2013 #7

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

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    Geez yer good....;)

    And yes ,that pitch is something you never forget the smell of.
     
  8. Feb 1, 2013 #8

    kjw

    kjw

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    Thanks for the replies. I'm pretty sure that the sealant was after the fact since it is dripped all over the plumbing and there is a paint stick with it thrown under the tub.
    I'm starting to think that there may have been a leak in the down pipe and they dug it out and poured in this sealant. When we first moved in, the drain was extremely slow and we went through two plumbers before the third one finally cleared it. It took him several hours with a power snake. Maybe the sealant leaked into the break in the pipe???
    Anyhow, the space is too tight for me to properly affix poly sheeting. I was thinking about cleaning up the back edge and then pouring a gallon of latex paint to cover and seal the old sealant. Thoughts? I also heard that lime could mask the smell, but I'm not sure if that would damage the metal piping.

    Thanks again for all your ideas.
     
  9. Feb 1, 2013 #9

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    Chemicals on top of chemicals??
    A gallon of latex paint will take years to dry and give off a chemical smell.
     
  10. Feb 1, 2013 #10

    Admin

    Admin

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    I use a ionizer for unpleasant smells. You can find them for pretty cheap at big box stores and they are highly effective.

    I rent and can rarely stand the smell of a new place till I run my ionizer for a few days.
     

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