Why these smelly drains smell and how to clean them

One thing that makes a spotless house look dirty is the sulfur smell coming from drains. But, it’s not as easy to wash as, for example, a garbage bin. So, how do we clean those smelly drains? But first, let’s see why your sink stinks.

Why do you have smelly drains in your house?

There are two primary sources for the smelly drains. It can be because of bacteria living in a buildup made with everything that goes through the drain, hair, soap, grease… These bacteria produce sulfur elements that smell like rotten eggs.

The other source of the smell can be the sewers. There are several systems to fight against the gas comings from the sewer: P-traps and vent pipes. If one fails, you’ll have to deal with a scent that doesn’t go away even after you clean the drains.

How to clean a shower drain that smells like rotten eggs with vinegar and baking soda?

You don’t need to buy expensive chemical products. All you need is baking soda, vinegar, and hot, but not boiling, water. The baking soda and vinegar will react and form foam and bubbles that unstick the gunk. The water will enhance the reaction and wash the deposits away. Why not boiling water? The PVC pipes accept running boiling water but can leak if it stays in them. The second risk is cracking your porcelain tray because of thermal shock.

The first step to clean your drain is pouring a cup of baking soda down the drain. Then, add hot water to spread baking soda and a liter (around 4 cups) of vinegar. Let it sit for 15 minutes and rinse well with water.

Baking soda is a simple and effective way to clean smelly drains

What is the salt down the drain trick?

You can find a trick using salt when you search for a remedy for your smelly drain. The salt is supposed to be abrasive and wash the pipes. But, for the salt to go down your tubes, you’ll need to pour water on the salt. But it will dissolve the salt and remove its abrasive shape. Baking soda with vinegar will be more effective.

What if your kitchen sink smells like sewage?

You can wash it with baking soda and vinegar like a shower drain. But do you have a garbage disposal? If so, when was the last time you cleaned it? To do so, let cold water run through it while it’s working for 30 seconds. Then, grind ice cubes with it to help remove the food scrap. You can then add a lemon for a fresher sent.

Can you pour bleach down a smelly drain?

You can, but if you want to make the smell disappear, it won’t work in the long term.

Bleach can kill the bacteria that produce the sulfur smell, but the buildup will stay there, and soon new bacteria will colonize it, and the smell will return. To remove the smell for good, you need to clean the pipe.

How to clean a smelly drain in the basement?

The simpler cause of the scent is a dried P-trap. The P-trap has a shape that retains water in it to block sewage gas out of your home. But the water can evaporate if you don’t use the drain regularly, and smelly gas will come into your basement. The solution? Pour water into the drain monthly.

If that doesn’t remove the smell, the cause can be a clogged drain, so you’ll need to use a plumbing snake tool. It can also be because of gas leakage that requires professional intervention.

My washing machine drain smells

The cause can be that you have detergent buildup in the drain and the washer. You’ll use baking soda and vinegar to clean the drain. And to avoid the smell coming back, it’s better to clean the washing machine as well. To do so, you’ll need to clean the filter. Depending on your machine, you’ll find a small panel in front or on the side of the washer. Or it can be reachable through a hole in the drum hidden behind a plastique part. Then wash the part where you put the detergent. Lastly, clean the whole machine by pouring 1 liter of vinegar into it and running it with hot water.

I have many smelly drains

If you tried to clean the drain, but it still smells, or if you have several smelly drains, the problem may not be the drains themselves. You can have a vent pipes problem, or the main sewer drain line can be clogged. You’ll need to call a plumber to resolve these issues.

How to avoid having smelly drains again?

A few tips can enhance how your pipes work.

First, don’t pour grease into the sink drain. The fat would solidify, clog the tube, and be difficult to remove.

Second, clean your pipes regularly with the baking soda and vinegar method. Or at least, don’t wait until the tubes are fully clogged to deal with the problem.

But to remember to clean your drains, the best is to add this task to your monthly or weekly cleaning schedule.

Smelly drains can become a huge issue, but most of the time, you don’t need to call the plumber right away. Try to clean them with baking soda, vinegar, and hot water. But to avoid any problem, the best solution is to maintain your pipes in good shape with small habits.

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