The onset of a foul, smelly bathroom or kitchen sink drain is a common issue that can quickly make any home uncomfortable. Smelly drains occur when organic matter builds up and decomposes in garbage disposals, kitchen sink drains, shower drains, and drain pipes. This decomposition in the clogged drain releases unpleasant sewer gases like hydrogen sulphide, which waft through drains and sink pipes with an offensive rotten egg odour. Clogged drains can also obstruct proper wastewater flow, leading to a stagnant sewer smell.
While it may be tempting to mask a drain smell with fragrances, the only way to fix a smelly drain is to tackle the root causes. Methods to prevent smelly drains include using drain strainers, regularly pouring boiling water, vinegar and baking soda down drains, and cleaning pipes with a drain snake to help eliminate blockages and clear away built-up gunk. Calling a professional plumber to inspect and address issues is advised for severe cases of persistently smelly drains or sewer smells. With some simple solutions, it’s possible to clean smelly drains, banish unpleasant odours and keep drains fresh and flowing freely.
Pinpoint The Origin Of Foul Drain Odours
There are a few common culprits behind foul drain smells wafting from sink drains, shower drains, and drain lines in the home. Identifying the root cause is key to finding the right solution and banishing unpleasant drain smells for good.
A build-up of organic residues like food particles, hair, oils and grease can decay in drain lines, producing smelly odours. Bacteria and mould growth in stagnant water or clogged drains also release stinky drain smells. A disruption to the drain venting system can trap gases in pipes. Cracked or damaged drain lines may leak sewer gases like hydrogen sulphide, known for its rotten egg stench.
Other causes include a dried-up p-trap, which normally blocks sewer gas. An improperly installed gas appliance that leaks exhaust into the drainage system could also lead to smelly odours from drains. For persistent drain smells, it’s a good idea to call a professional drain cleaning service to diagnose and fix the issue properly.
Tackling a clogged kitchen drain immediately with a hot vinegar and boiling hot water solution can help scour the grime and clear built-up grease causing bad drain smells. But if DIY solutions are not eliminating the stinky drain smells, contact a plumber to inspect your drains and fix any issues to banish smelly odours for good.
Implement Preventive Measures
Taking proactive steps to maintain drains can go a long way towards preventing unpleasant smells from developing. Here are some handy tips to keep drains fresh and flowing:
- Use drain strainers in sinks to catch food scraps, hair and other debris before it heads down the pipes. Clean strainers regularly.
- Pour a mix of baking soda and vinegar down drains weekly to clean grime and deter smelly build-up. Let the mixture foam for 15 minutes before rinsing with cold water.
- Run cold water for a few minutes after using the kitchen or bathroom sink to flush residue away faster.
- Pour 1⁄2 cup baking soda followed by 1⁄2 cup white vinegar down shower drains weekly to eliminate soap scum.
- Periodically use a plunger or drain snake to clear built-up gunk and keep water moving freely through pipes.
- Check for cracked or damaged vent pipes that could allow sewer gas to leak indoors. Call a plumber if any issues are found.
- Keep drains free of hair and food waste that can accumulate and rot.
Following these handy maintenance tips will help prevent gunky build-up that leads to unpleasant drain smells in kitchens, bathrooms and other home areas. Acting quickly at the first whiff of stinky odours can also help fix smelly drains before they get out of hand.
Use Natural Drain Deodorisers
For mild cases of smelly drains or the occasional sink drain odour, there are several natural deodorisers and DIY solutions you can try before calling a plumber:
- Pour 1⁄2 cup of baking soda down the stinky drain, let it sit for 5 minutes, then follow with 1⁄2 cup of vinegar. The fizzing reaction helps scrub away gunky build-up, causing odours. Flush with hot water.
- Squeeze the juice of 2 lemons down the shower drain and let sit overnight. Rinse in the morning. The citric acid helps kill bacteria and freshen pipes.
- Grind used lemon or orange peels into the garbage disposal to add a fresh, zesty scent to the drain.
- Remove drain covers and place p-traps over drain plugs when not in use. This deprives bacteria of the moist environment they need to thrive.
- Boil a solution of water and lemon peels and pour it down bathroom drains. This disinfects pipes and leaves a bright scent.
- Use an enzymatic drain cleaner monthly to break down organic gunk before accumulating. Enzymes digest build-up without harsh chemicals.
- Insert a drain snake into clogged drains to physically remove hair and debris-causing odours.
Natural deodorisers are useful for maintaining fresh plumbing and tackling minor cases of malodorous drains. But if DIY approaches fail to eliminate persistent, smelly drain problems, call a professional plumber to address the issue adequately.
Call A Sydney Plumber For Severe Odour Issues
While natural deodorisers may temporarily mask drain smells, they don’t fix severe, persistent odour issues. They won’t get rid of smelly drains for good. If foul smells continue emanating from sinks, showers and drains despite your best DIY efforts, it’s time to call in a professional.
A reputable plumber has the expertise to fully diagnose smelly drain problems and get to the root cause, whether it’s a clogged vent, cracked pipe, dried-out p-trap, or extensive build-up in sewer lines. They have the equipment to inspect drains and clear stubborn clogs and blockages in kitchen sinks, bathrooms and sewer lines caused by grease, rotting food particles, tree roots and more. Plumbers can also check for issues like leaky plumbing, malfunctioning garbage disposals or sewer line breaks that could release unpleasant sewer gasses with rotten eggs and a musty odour or foul smell into your home.
While boiling water, baking soda and citric acid can help remove mild clogs, severe blockages require a professional-grade drain snake to cut through tough obstructions. Plumbers also have commercial-strength augers that can scrub biofilm build-up off pipe walls that DIY drain cleaners can’t touch. They can even vacuum out sediment from the lowest parts of your home’s plumbing system using high-powered hydrojetting.
For extensive drain cleaning throughout large sections of piping, hiring a qualified Sydney plumbing company is the best way to thoroughly eliminate any foul odours at their source and prevent future smelly drain issues. Don’t let an unrelenting rotten, gunky smell coming from drains detract from your home’s comfort any longer.
Don’t Let Smelly Drains Disrupt Your Home’s Comfort
While smelly drains can be unpleasant, a bit of diligence with maintenance and knowing when to call in a professional can help banish foul odours for good. Implement our recommended prevention tips to stop smells at the source and clear drains. Natural deodorisers like baking soda, vinegar and citrus can tackle mild cases of malodorous sinks and pipes. But if you have a persistent or severe stinky drain problem that DIY remedies can’t fix, don’t hesitate to contact the experts.
At Service First, we are Sydney’s leading plumbing professionals with extensive experience tackling foul drain odours. Our licensed plumbers have the latest tools and technology to diagnose issues and thoroughly clean drains, pipes, vents and sewer lines. We offer reasonable rates with no call-out fees. Contact us today for a quote or to schedule a visit. Eliminate those unpleasant, smelly drains from your home once and for all by getting in touch today.