Find yourself holding your nose lately when you use the bathroom or the kitchen sink? Plumbing odours are common and may have a simple solution you can do yourself or may be indicative of a bigger problem. Here are some of the most common causes of plumbing smells and what to do about them.
A Dried-Out P-Trap
A P-trap is the P or U-shaped pipe that is located underneath a sink. As water flows through the P-trap, it stops sewer gases from rising up through your pipes and coming out of your sink drain. If your P-trap is too dry, those gases will come right up through the pipes and cause a sewer smell to come out of your sink. If you notice this type of odour coming out of your bathroom or kitchen sink, simply try letting water run down the sink and see if this puts a stop to the stink.
Bacteria Growing in Your Shower
Is your shower smelling a little off? The problem could be bacteria. Over time, products we use in the shower such as shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and soap create a buildup of biofilm on the inside of your shower drain. This biofilm attracts natural bacteria, which cling to it and feed on it, creating an unpleasant odour. To clean the inside of your shower drain, flush it with hot water followed by one cup of distilled white vinegar. Wait about two hours before running the shower, then flush the drain once more with hot water.
An Issue with the Sewer Line
If the nasty smell is coming from multiple drains and not just one shower or sink, you may have a severe problem with your sewer line, such as a break in the line somewhere. If this is the case, call a professional right away to check out the problem. You don’t want to wait on this because an issue with the sewer line could result in sewage flooding into your home if left unchecked.