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How Do Plumbing Vents Get Clogged?

June 28, 2024

Did you know that your plumbing circulates a lot more than clean water from the supply line and gray water in the drain line? Your system also comprises plumbing vents that introduce air into the mix. Below, our Bullseye Home Services team explains what these vents do and what causes them to clog, keeping them from doing their job. 

The Real Reason Behind Plumbing Vents

Plumbing vents run vertically from your plumbing system to your rooftop. These vent stacks pull air into your plumbing system to regulate air pressure and keep all water and waste moving. That means without air entering your pipes, the water pressure creates a vacuum effect, keeping the water from flowing properly and encouraging other issues we’ll get into below. 

Vent pipes also work in reverse, acting as a release valve by allowing toxic air that contains hydrogen sulfide, methane, and other sewer gases to exit the system. Without this air exiting your pipes, these harmful odors flow back into your home, causing dizziness, fatigue, nausea, and, with prolonged exposure, shortness of breath, seizures, or even death. 

Why Do Vents Clog?

Clogs are the primary reason for vent issues, from birds that build nests on the rooftop’s vent opening to leaves and branches that fall into the chute due to overhanging tree limbs or heavy winds that carry and deposit sediments. These obstructions are common, but they are far from the only ones.

Clogged plumbing vents also ensue in the following cases:

  • Years of exposure to rainwater (especially acidic rain) causes corrosion that leaves sediments filling the vents.
  • Vent pipe moisture freezes in low temperatures, causing ice formation to block airflow.
  • A poor design or installation process has caused the system to be inefficient. For instance, if there are too many sharp, 90-degree pipe turns, the air loses momentum and dissipates before reaching its destination.

How Can You Tell If You Have a Clogged Vent?

You may be wondering how you can tell the vent opening on your roof needs cleaning without climbing up there regularly to check. Luckily, you can use popular telltale signs so you don’t have to get out the ladder. 

One common sign is slow drainage due to there being little air available to push the water along. If water isn’t exiting your bathtub fast enough, pooling is occurring in your sink basin, or your toilet bowl no longer has a powerful flush and plunging isn’t helping, you may have a clogged vent stack.

Other signs include:

  • An empty toilet tank since air is not pushing water into your appliances 
  • Gurgling sounds as water finally enters the drains due to trapped air
  • Sewer odors entering your home due to a dried-out P-trap that no longer creates a water barrier

Hitting the Bullseye Every Time!

Whether you need assistance determining whether your plumbing vents are the root cause of your plumbing issues or need someone to clean them, Bullseye Home Services is at your beck and call. Our licensed and insured team offers local services in Osprey, FL, and the surrounding areas, so call (941) 259-6767 for five-star assistance!

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Mark D.
We had Stone from Bullseye plumbing out to do a water heater flush and home inspection. Stone was vary informative about water Quality and options available. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Bullseye plumbing for service and plumbing estimates.
Poison T.
Bullseye does good, clean, work and arrives on time as well as being very courteous. However, I think that $850 to install pvc pipes and a faucet is a bit much
chris V.
Dan C.
Austin W. did a great job, keep up the Great work!
Ann H.
Very thorough and courteous. They came out the same day I called, and the new pump will be installed tomorrow. I'd recommend them
Dianne O.
Courteous, well done plumbing repairs.
Lori H.
We had an unusual problem with a clogged HVAC drain line. Josh tried hard to snake it with the equipment he had. When it didn't work, I appreciate that the dispatching staff sent Nick out with a camera and more heavy duty snaking equipment. That worked well and he was able to clear the clogged drain line! We will be using Bullseye in the future to solve our plumbing problems!
William T.
We had a bathroom faucet replaced by Nick. He did a great job. We will use the service again!
Bennie B.
Ceiling showed something leaking. Thought it might be PEX recipe leaking. Robert crawled back in attic and confirmed it was ductwork causing issue. Took pictures for me. It’s an obstacle course up there.
Evelyne G.
Stone is a technician’s Bullseye, he came to repair a pretty leek on my driveway till water meters. Impossible to know about responsibilities of HOA and property management or Utility bill.Btw a little expensive but he did a nice job, very professional and care about the collateral damages dirty water on my driveway .I am thankful about his job and I recommend him .EG
Jack K.
Bullseye was amazing in an emergency crisis event at our home. We discovered a natural gas leak in our attic to the extent our gas supplier came and locked our gas and had to have a certified plumber fix the issue. Thank God our home hadn't blown up. I called Bullseye at 4PM and they were on site the next morning by 9. Their tech Kyle had to crawl around the attic until he discovered the leaking fitting. Then he spent the rest of the day fixing the problem. As he said, no way am I going to leave you without gas today! He left around 4PM and all is now good. Granted it was over $3,200 for parts and labor but our house is now back to being safe. Outstanding service and can highly recommend these guys for your plumbing work.
Lee B.
Bullseye Plumbing did a sewer line repipe for my unit in Sarasota. The process was thoroughly explained in advance. The crew that did the work were professional and made sure to keep my property clean. The work was done on time and for cost of the estimate. Job well done. Lee
Harris B.
Bullseye is a great piece of mind to have. I’m part of the family with the plumbing service. Today, I had my water heater flushed and treated as a preventative maintenance once a year. I also had my sinks, toilets, and pipes inspected as part of the yearly plan. My technician Micheal McMahon did a great job as usual with thorough service and explanation of the task that was being completed. Thank you Bullseye for being there for me and my family.
Serviceman Stone showed up exactly on time and was extremely helpful, completely understanding my needs and application. I give him and Bullseye 5 stars (Or six if I could!).
Amber R.
Kyle was quick to provide a quote & answer all questions I had.
Frank B.
Jack C.
Steven K.
Exceptionally easy to request service; received callback from Bullseye quickly & technician (Josh) arrived shortly thereafter, did a good job, fast, competent, resolved issue, personable, & informative. Very happy with Bullseye!
Betsy L.
Had an outside faucet changed. Josh was great explained the process and did an excellent job 👍
Jeff Y.
When we moved to South Sarasota, we learned about the problems of cast iron sewer pipe. They usually fail after 50 years from construction. When we decided who to call for the reline process, I remember seeing many Bullseye trucks in our neighborhood. One neighbor three doors down had them perform their reline work and were extremely satisfied. We called three different plumbers, including Bullseye to give us quotes. All of the quotes were very close. We called a fourth but they couldn’t give us a definitive quote until they did some additional work… at a cost!(?). We decided on Bullseye due to the professionalism of the person (Josh) who came to give us the quote and the great recommendations from neighbors. Knowing that there isn’t any guarantee of extent of work to be done until the pipes were cleaned and milled, we had an additional problem that also needed to be repaired. Bullseye performed all of the necessary work. The different crews that were dispatched to perform the various aspects of the job were very professional and attentive to our needs (having toilets and water back on each evening). The reline process was finished in two+ days and the additional work by the third day. I was impress with the quality of work performed and there attention to keeping the worksite as clean as possible. I would definitely recommend Bullseye for plumbing and sewer relining. They weren’t the cheapest, but they were the best.
Gregory S.
Expert service tech, Stone, arrived quickly and completed job thoroughly!
Teresa C.
Our first time with Bulls eye. Bit confusing with one guy showing up to do estimate then technician Mike an hour later but Mike installed sink and appliance fittings in the kitchen after renovation. Great job Mike!
Marcia M.
Friday afternoon my hot water heater blew a hole, spewing water all over the garage. I called Bullseye and they came and right away, assessed the situation and had a new hot water heater in before the day was done! Thank you Bullseye
R W.
First time using Bullseye Plumbing and I am so impressed! Reasonable pricing and friendly, responsive customer service when setting up the appointment. Excellent response time. My technician Josh was awesome- kind, professional and very thorough. Would definitely recommend.
Philippe B.
Bullseyes technician gave us a very good diagnostic of our sewer pipe issues and we are going to hydro jet the whole house pipes system! Very professional & more than reasonable pricing for the job! Thank you! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️Great house colonoscopy!!! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Gwen G.
Nick was wonderful, thorough. And efficient. Thank you so very much. Gwen
Michael R.
Fast and completed what was needed
Marla Y.
Our house had several dripping spouts that had to be fixed. The Bullseye plumber was so great. He explained everything to me before he did the work. He fixed everything in a timely manner. He was clean and so polite!
Chuck L.
Kelly S.
We’ve used Bullseye for a variety of repairs. They have great staff and I was incredibly impressed by Robert. He repaired a leaking copper pipe previously repaired (below photos speak for themselves). The welded repair was far superior to the repair couplings previously used. I appreciate quality workmanship and attention to detail.I noted that Josh used covers for his shoes before walking inside my home and he oversaw the plumbing projects to ensure that I was satisfied. They provide full service and guarantee their work.
Kristina B.
I had an emergency and was looking for a plumber assistance ASAP. Bullseye plumbers arrived the same day to save us from a disaster. Austin, Mark, Jackson, and Josh were extremely professional, and demonstrated exceptional expertise. They efficiently diagnosed and resolved the issue with the plumbing, ensuring everything was in perfect working order. They also took the time to explain the repairs. I highly recommend this company for anyone in need of reliable and skilled plumbing services.
Kyle S.
Lance J.
On time and very accommodating when one of the faucets I picked out didn’t work! Excellent work. Very professional!
George B.
Your technician, Stone, was excellent- professional, polite, answered all my questions patiently...we will consider your estimate and let you know! Geo.
Steven R.
Nick came to do what I thought would be a routine visit. He really did find and fix multiple problems and consulted with me every step of the way. Excellent service!
John U.
Service rep was very through and very neat.
Tim C.
I had my annual water tank flush in my new condo. Stone was my technician He found I needed to replace my tank. A true professional he gave me all the options called the office and they were able to come out within the hour.Alexis called me scheduled the install with David another Bullseye pro and finished in less than one hour.Bullseye is not the cheapest but they are the best. They give you quality service with a great team and piece of mind.Thanks Bullseye great job . tim capadalis
Mandy G.
Maria L.
Great service . Very knowledgeable. Luke and Stone. Great guys.
Bill B.
Great service! Wonderful young man who knew his stuff and took extra time to clear our sink drain. So impressed, I signed up for their membership plan! Thank you, Bullseye!!
Steve A.
Kyle did a wonderful job. Very efficient and personable. He finished quickly and even did something for my wife. Thank you Kyle
Nicole D.
I had a main line blockage in my house late one evening.I called bullseye because they repiped my whole house some time back, and left a message with the answering service.Next morning first thing I got a call from the dispatch and they sent someone right out. The tech was courteous and knowledgeable and fixed the problem in under an hour. He even showed me how to unclog slow drains.I forget his name, but he was great!
Dan D.
Nick came out to my house and did an excellent job snake my line and got the water flowing again,i would recommend Bullseye Home Services to everyone 10 star job,thank you very much
Carol B.
I called Bullseye Plumbing this am at Whispering Sands’ referral bc of a clogged kitchen drain. Garion & assistant discovered that the problem was more than the drain. The main pipe & arteries outside the home had major rust & debris which need further attention. After hearing my options, i decided with the air/water flow pressure to flush out whatever is there. Garion was polite, neat & clean plus knowledgeable about his job. I’d use him again.I prepaid half the cost & the crew will come tomorrow to do the rest of the job to make all the drains flow easily.Carol Bures
Kristen R.
Stephen S.
Septic was backing up into the house. We needed help quick! Called up Bullseye. From the start it was a wonderful experience. The employee on the phone(sorry, cant remember the name) was polite. Got us right on the books. A short time later, I received a call from Mike letting me know he is on his way. Once he arrived, Mike got to work. He explained everything as he went through the process and cleared out our main pipe that was clogged with what looked like old cooking oil. He was an efficient, and honest professional.All in all. Great company, great employees.
Eileen Q.
Mark was wonderful. He arrived in less than 30 minutes and was finished the work in under 30 minutes. He also was very knowledgable and offered varying quotes on the spot for the different items I was looking for. I’m super impressed with the service. I will totally recommend and call back for future jobs!! Thank you so much!
Prompt and thorough
Staying with a friend. Last month she had sufficient repairs done by Bullseye. They did a wonderful job and when miscellaneous repairs were needed Norman stayed on the job to make sure the repairs were completed.
Tammariea C.
We had some old copper pipes break which flooded our home. I called 3 different companies, not knowing much about the services in Sarasota. Bullseye Home Services responded quickly and came out immediately. The other 2 companies called me back later in the day to schedule an appointment all the while Bullseye was already hard at work. Nick came out and assessed the damage and mapped out the replumb. He was very thorough and knowledable, and answered all questions/concerns. Josh and Josh (the dream team!) came in to do the replumb and install a new water heater in 1 DAY! These 2 were very maticulius with their work and stayed late until it was done! The work they did is clean and pleasing to the eye and did I mention their mannerism? stinking polite and courteous! My water pressure and temperature is better than the original. You're in good hands when using this company and cannot recommend Bullseye enough! God Bless You!!
Teresa C
Bullseye Plumbing is ExcellentPrompt, Friendly serviceCan't thank them enough!
bob C.
Terry Ann G.
You whole team is excellent. We got a A/C, We got Garbage disposal, and note we got a water system you guys are amazing, they arKnowledgable in there Field. The staff is great also.
G P.
We called Bullseye Home Services when we arrived in Sarasota to have a new toilet installed. They got us on the schedule within 24hours. WOW. Chad gave us a courtesy call prior to his arrival, went over pricing, very professional and experienced.We have used Bullseye in the past and every time we need something the team has been there to help. Chad we thank you for a speedy and and neat service. You represent the company well. Go Chad!!!!
Florida T.
Great company with really great customer service. Recently had them install a hot water tank which was delivered and installed wonderfully. Had a drain clog fixed by their tech Josh which was fantastic very informative
Brian H.
We just had Courtney inspect our back flow device. She was very polite, knowledgeable in her trade and very pleasant. She is definitely an asset to your company.
Caleb S.
Quick to respond, thanks for your help Tyler.
Dave H.
Brad. Very timely in making the appointment. Provided professional service and advice. Job well done
Luis G.
Bennington T.
We own a small business on St. Armand's circle. But we are one of many businesses in our particular building. We have all been struggling with a situation that had us scratching our heads. The bullseye team, Tyler and Brendan, were amazing. They came out, figured out where the issue stemmed from, same day as our service call, and had a game plan for repairs by the end of the day. Very friendly and professional. We highly recommend this company for whatever your needs are. They will not disappoint!Thank you guys for the work you do! We appreciate you all.
Nora J.
Austin Warner was my technician on time and very professional. Would recommend him to all your customers
Steven F.
2 Kitchen faucet replacement’sMiles did a great job
Ray M.
Nick and everyone we felt with was amazing. Very professional and they care about your property. Amazing service all around. Thank you so much.
Larry N.
Josh came out to a quotas on our water heater very professional very nice and knowledgeable great guy
Natalie L
If it werent for ADRIANA I would not have ever used their services !! I am a tough customer and I know that sometimes it can be a hassle... But when I say: wow, what a wonderful young woman, you can believe it. She quelled any and all of my concerns, and the service was smooth ALL thanks to HER!
Jim S.
Norm, Matt and Miles were professional, polite, clean, considerate, knowledgeable, informative, timely and more.
sandra C.
Quinton was very professional . informed me of everything he was doing.would have him do any work again . excellent service Company great.time efficient.thanks Sandra cline /tenant
Jacqueline C.
Sent Austin out to help me fix my problem with no hot water . Austin is very professional and very knowledgeable with plumbing . He sure knows plumbing he had my issue fixed in seconds and now I am extremely happy ! Recommend Bullseye for any plumbing service needed and also highly recomend asking for Austin great techician !
C Kelly A.
Diane V.
Brad was fantastic and patient with a very demanding situation. He is a problem-solver and great personality as well.
Al P.
Great job on a difficult installation and replumbing of an older house.
David H.
terry T.
Had to call Bullseye back out after an issue arose. I was told it may take up to an hour to arrive. No problem. Quentin was there within 20 minutes and fixed the problem in less than 2 minutes. As always, very polite and respectful. Thanks!
Keith B.
Brad and Quinton were awesome very professional recommend bullseye to everyone
Kimberly P.
Every time we've had Bullseye out, they've been on time and professional.Today's experience with Josh was no exception. He took special care to ensure each of our issues were handled properly and was also very personable. Thanks Josh!
Ron P.
After a major plumbing and waste failure, we contacted Bullseye to evaluate what had failed. They responded quickly and were able to determine that everything needed to be completely replaced. They quickly got a plan, pricing and crews in place to replace the waste lines and to re-pipe the house. Everyone we dealt with, from the office, to the crews that worked on our home, has a very high level of professionalism. We received calls and texts showing arrival times, the crews were prompt and worked quickly and efficiently. The job has been completed inside of the estimated dates and we couldn't be happier with the level of work done. Even the local building inspector commented what a great job that they did and that they didn't cut corners. We were especially happy with our lead plumber, Norm. He went above and beyond to make sure that we were happy with all the work and to make sure that any detail we needed was accommodated.
Madge M.
Austin Warner came out on Friday 4:30PM after the supply houses were closed found us a hot Water Heater to be installed the next morning by Miles. Every thing was finished by noon. Every thing was cleaned up & hauled off.
Paul D
The Office Staff was very friendly, followed up quickly. They sent their Technician Kyle out the same day to give us an estimate. He is informative and knowledgeable. His suggestions were very helpful. Kyle showed up the next day on time and performed quality work. He definitely takes pride in his work. I highly recommend this company.
Michael K.
Josh, Vinny & Nate were consummate professionals and technically astute. We had an initial assessment conducted for a clogged drain, and with a house built in 1968 having cast iron pipes, they provided us a few options that would be short or long term as well as cost estimates for both. We chose to have our drain lines jetted and the team did an exceptional job. We highly recommend Bullseye and their team of proficient Plumbers! Thank you!
Brenna H.
Norm was so professional and thorough! Great service. We are happy with our new pipes and water heater.
Deb M.
Vinny explained everything he would do if we hired him to take care of our issue. When he and a helper came the next day they did the work exactly as described. He kept me informed each step along the way. He took his shoes off in the house, he cleaned everything so I didn't even know they had been here. Not only is he so good at customer service he seems to really enjoy his job and meeting people. This company is very good at what they do, very friendly and great communicators. I highly recommend them for any of your plumbing issues and beyond! They turn a not so nice issue in to a pleasant experience. Thank you Vinny.
Sandra B.
Norm was our person from Bullseye and he was friendly, courteous and concerned that I was please and happy with the result of his work.
Debra C.
We purchased a water filter and softener. Norm was very professional and knowledgeable. He cared about making sure he didn't bring and dirt and mud into the home. When he was done he walked me through the system and explained the water flow and shut offs.
I had a really good experience with this company. The technician came to give me an estimate, and returned a couple of days later to get the job done. The work was completed in a timely and professional manner. Thank you!
Carrie J.
Nick met with us and explained the plumbing issues we were having. He was very professional and answered all our questions. We set up an appointment for 1 week later to replace our extremely old hot water heater and update the galvanized pipes to new plumbing material.Miles and Ryan arrived and observed the issues they would be tackling. They got right to work. Both were very professional and respectful. They put in a long day, got the job finished, and made sure everything was cleaned up before they left. Ryan made sure we had the number in case anything came up.They did a great job , we would highly recommend Bullseye.
Jill C.
Josh was not only on time he was kind and ensured we were comfortable with the price and product before the install. We always use Bullseye for all our plumbing needs and they have always been amazing. I cannot stress enough how all the technicians that have come into our home have done quality work and have said if we ever had a problem (we never have) to call right away for them to come fix it. This is an amazing company and we love supporting local. Thank you for your amazing service
Melissa Ann D.
They are all great! They are our plumber moving ahead. We are very happy with them and will refer them to anyone who needs service.

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