Have you ever noticed a strange, rank smell coming from your drains? This might be fairly normal, or it could be an issue with your plumbing. This blog will take a closer look at a few reasons why your drain might be emitting a foul stench and explain what you can do to fix the problem. Likewise, if the issue is more serious, we’ll explain what needs to be done to repair it and why you should reach out to a pro to have the job done right.
You Have a Clog
One of the most common odor sources in drains is a clog comprised of nasty, rotting food, decaying oils and fats, and plenty of other substances that carry a less than pleasant smell. While covered with water, a clog may not send a smell all the way back up your drain line. However, not all clogs are completely water-tight, and after a while, water levels will recede to the point where these gasses and particles may reach your nostrils.
Depending on the nature of your clog, getting rid of it can be a simple process or require a little bit more intricate work. However, the best way to take care of virtually any clog is with a professional drain cleaning service. Drain cleaning not only eliminates your clog and removes it entirely, but it actively prevents the clog from returning anytime soon by eliminating any footholds grime might use to start re-forming into a new obstruction.
Your P-Trap Is Empty
Your P-trap is a segment of drain pipe that bends 180 degrees upward for roughly an inch or two before turning right back around and out toward the sewer system. The purpose of this bend is to trap water inside the line, thus closing off the connection between your drain and your sewer. Without a P-trap, sewer gasses could flood back up your sewer and drain lines, filtering out into your home and emitting a truly disgusting smell. With a P-trap, these gasses are stuck in the drain and hidden away.
However, they can only stay that way so long as water remains in your P-trap. Over time, if you don’t use your sink for a while, the water in your P-trap can evaporate, causing the level to drop to the point where a small air leak might form. At that point, sewer gasses are free to flow back up your drain and out into your home. Fixing this problem is extremely simple, however—run your water for a minute or so to flush the trap out and refill it. Before long, you should notice the smell is gone.
Your Garbage Disposal Has Rotting Food in It
Garbage disposals are a quick and convenient way to get rid of organic food waste. They grind it up into an easily-to-dispose paste that can be handled by modern sewage infrastructure, and that means fewer pests in trash cans as well as foul odors in homes. However, it’s easy to forget to run your garbage disposal after completing the washing up after a meal. This means food that fell into the disposal (that has likely gotten wet) will now proceed to sit there and rot away until the disposal is run. Within a few short hours, that can lead to some nasty odors coming from the disposal itself.
Running your disposal is an easy way to fix this problem, but be careful what you do put down the drain in the first place. Certain foods can cause clogs, and fixing clogs behind a garbage disposal can be tedious and difficult.
Your Sewer Line May Be Backed Up
Finally, strong odors may be a sign that your sewer line has a serious issue. When waste builds up in your sewer, it eventually will back up to your drains and cause odors in your kitchen as well as throughout your house. If you notice some foul odors coming from your kitchen drain as well as your downstairs bathroom drains, then call a pro for a sewer line inspection right away. You may need a repair or a hydro jetting service to allow the waste to flow away again.Are you puzzled by strange smells coming from your kitchen drain? Call Moe Plumbing at (818) 396-8002 for service today!