Ways to Eliminate Drain Odors

Have you ever gone into your kitchen only to detect a foul odor? You start searching—it’s not the garbage can, and the nasty odor isn’t coming from the fridge. No, the cause appears to be an icky and pungent kitchen drain. Thankfully, with a bit of detective work and drain-cleaning efforts, you can say goodbye to that unpleasant odor and say hello to freshness!

What Causes a Stinky Drain?

Your sink can smell bad for many reasons. Identifying the cause is the starting point to freshening up your kitchen and stopping a recurrence. The most frequent offenders include:

  • Bacteria: A kitchen drain lined with food particles, grease buildup and other gunk is a breeding ground for bacteria and other microorganisms that produce unpleasant odors as they feed.
  • Blocked drain: Stopped up pipes can lead to stagnant water and bacteria growth, adding to the bad odor.
  • Sewer gases: If the P-trap below the sink dries out, sewer gases may emanate from the drain, causing a lingering sewer smell. This typically occurs with seldom-used plumbing fixtures
  • Plumbing flaws: From DIY accidents to missing traps or drain vents, plumbing challenges can allow nasty smells to enter your living space.

Ways to Clear a Stinky Drain

Here are four tried-and-true ways to eliminate smelly drain odors:

  • Hot water: Heat a mixture of water and vinegar until it nearly boils and slowly pour it in the drain. The hot water clears out the gunk and vinegar counteracts the stench.
  • Baking soda and vinegar: Start with the hot water strategy outlined above. If it’s not enough, pour a cup of baking soda in the drain and then pour two cups of hot vinegar. Appreciate the fizz and leave it for an hour. Then, flush the drain with more hot water to tackle stubborn gunk and bacteria.
  • P-trap cleaning: Don your protective gloves and position a bucket below the P-trap. Unscrew the pipe by hand or with a wrench, if necessary, and remove it. Empty the contents into the trash, rinse the pipe and reattach your sink’s plumbing.
  • A note on bleach: Although it is a good antibacterial agent, bleach is not ideal for cleaning drains. It can damage your pipes and potentially create toxic gases, so avoid the use of bleach in this situation.

Tips for Pleasant-Smelling Drains

It’s easy to keep reeking drains at bay with a little elbow grease. Here’s what we recommend:

  • Run your garbage disposal and rinse with cold water for 20 seconds after grinding up food to thoroughly flush particles out the pipes.
  • Rinse the drain every week or so with a gallon of near-boiling water to stop the buildup of odor-causing particles.
  • Run water down rarely used sinks to keep the P-trap filled. For more protection, put a bit of mineral oil in the drain, because that slows evaporation.
  • Pour a handful of baking soda in the drain and follow that with hot water to absorb and counteract odors.
  • Occasionally, follow up the baking soda method with a cup of white vinegar for a even greater clean. Allow the baking soda to activate for a half-hour, then flush the drain completely with hot water.
  • Grind lemon or orange peels to leave your sink smelling citrus-fresh.
  • Use enzyme cleaners to prevent the buildup of odor-causing residue without relying on harsh chemicals.
  • Hire a specialist to inspect your plumbing occasionally. This can help find odor-causing situations before they become a big problem.
  • Don’t ever put grease and other kitchen scraps or substances down the drain that can easily clog or decompose, such as coffee grounds and fibrous vegetables.
  • Use mesh strainers to catch food debris and other debris before they end up in drain. Then, empty the strainers into the trash to keep your pipes flowing smoothly and smelling fresh.
  • Opt for professional drain cleaning to ensure a properly done job. Licensed plumbers have the tools and expertise to clear tough clogs and smelly problems. Plus, they can give personalized advice specific to your household’s plumbing system.

Get Expert Drain Cleaning in the U.S. with Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing

If your attempts to clean the smelly kitchen drain don’t work, it’s time to call in the pros. Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing is known for fast, lasting plumbing solutions in the U.S., including professional drain cleaning. Our 100% satisfaction guarantee means we’re dedicated to your complete happiness.

So, the next time your smelly drains make you want to run out of the room, choose the knowledgeable pros at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Plan your appointment by phoning 866-397-3787 today!

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