Well, it’s a good thing we cleaned up the outhouse

Oy vey.

It’s past midnight as I write this, and it has suddenly become a rather unpleasant night!

I was returning from the bathroom when, while walking past the old basement door, I heard a splashing sound I should not have been hearing, so I went down to take a look.

The septic backed up again.

The pipe with the P trap was full to the top, and water backed up into the laundry sink to the point of overflowing. Thankfully, we don’t really use this basement much, because the water has spread pretty far. Thankfully, whatever caused it to back up happened relatively recently; the last major use of water was a load of laundry, and greywater seems to be most of what I was looking at down there.

I’ve already arranged for the septic guy to come over tomorrow morning. Getting that done was actually in the budget for next month, which means we would have had it done at the next of next week, when my husband’s disability payment came in on Thursday.

Once the tank is empty, I can see what I can do about unclogging the pipes. I am guessing it is the same sort of thing that happened last time. If that turns out to not be it, we’ll have to call in a plumber.


The last time this happened, we were able to set up a honey pot in the bathroom until we could use the toilet again. We don’t have it anymore; I took it over to my mother’s when we found out she was having mobility issues getting to the bathroom at night. We did, however, get the outhouse cleaned up, and made the entry safe to use. So we do have an alternative.

There’s a bit of a new issue, though.

Once we determined that we would have to use the outhouse, I grabbed the flashlight, some cleaning supplies and toilet paper to set it up. It’s been a while since I’ve gone in there, so I wanted to sanitize the seating area. When I opened the toilet lid to clean it, however, things looked… different. When I was cleaning it out before, I made a point of checking underneath, and saw the contents were composted and level from being flooded out by melting snow over the years. It needed to be emptied, but not in any urgent way.

It’s now full.

Of gravel.

After shining the flashlight around, I was able to spot a small hole.

It looks like a groundhog made a den entry leading under the floor boards, filling much of the space under the seat with gravel.


So that’s going to have to be all dug out. It can be accessed from the back of the outhouse, but not very easily.


It’s been a while since we’ve seen the groundhogs; I’ve seen one, once, a couple of weeks ago or so, and that’s it. They no longer visit the bird seed, and we no longer see them around the yard. It seems early, but they seem to have gone into hibernation already.

I suppose it’s good to find this out now, and not in the middle of winter or something.

I am not looking forward to having to clean up the mess in the basement.


The Re-Farmer

5 thoughts on “Well, it’s a good thing we cleaned up the outhouse

  1. Pingback: Clean up: our “second bathroom”, prepping to paint inside | The Re-Farmer

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