Three Reasons for Stinky Drains and Smelly Water
When you are confronted with an unpleasant odor in your home, it can be overwhelming. Rest assured, if the odor is emanating from your drains or your water, there are only a handful of reasons of what could be behind it. And once you’ve determined what the cause is, you can work towards a solution.
Sometimes there is a blockage in your drain that is keeping lingering odors from going down the pipe. A professional drain cleaning will take care of that. You may have success by sprinkling some baking soda with vinegar as well. The foaming action is a great natural drain cleaner.
If that isn’t the case, here are the top three reasons for stinky drains and smelly water.
1- Investigate the P-Trap
You know that curved piece that is attached to the pipe underneath your sink? It is called the P-trap. Quite simply, it is shaped like a “P” and works as a trap for sewer gases.
That trap is meant to be filled with water, which will keep gases from traveling into your home. Sometimes if you don’t use a sink or shower for a long time, the trap will run dry.
A dry P-trap means that there is no barrier preventing the smelly gas from getting into your home.
If you run the water, it might be enough to fix it. If not, check out the seal. The water might be leaking from there.
2- Is it the Water Heater?
There are a couple of strong indications that your water heater is to blame. Test it out by filling a glass with water.
If the water smells while it is in the glass, then the water heater is causing it. Similarly, if the odor is sulfuric, this is almost certainly the cause.
Your water heater has an anode rod which is meant to keep corrosion at bay. If it is overactive, it will release a large amount of sulfuric gas, which is why it smells bad.
Typically this happens if your water heater has been off for a long time. To fix, you just need to replace the rod.
3- Maybe it is the Sewer Line?
If you detect a smell coming from all of your drains, it is likely a sewer problem. This smell is more on the musty side.
What is happening is that your sewer line is possibly cracked, so wastewater isn’t traveling away as it should.
If you have that smell together with low water pressure, the appearance of damp spots, soft spots on your lawn or an unexplained hike in your water bills, then there is a good chance you need to get your sewer line fixed.