Here’s what to Do if Your Drains Reek of Sewage

Plumber Fixing a Kitchen Sink - San Diego PlumberMost homeowners use their plumbing system carelessly, forgetting that everything they flush could come back to haunt them if they aren’t careful. When used improperly, the odors can rush back through the pipes and permeate your home, leading to an unpleasant situation. But the smell is not the worst problem to come from this. The sewage odors could also affect your health as they carry all sorts of dangerous pathogens.

Even if you are somehow able to withstand the smell if you ever experience this issue the most important thing you should do is to contact an experienced San Diego plumber to find its source. There are some steps you could take on your own to temporarily take care of the problem, but make sure to contact an expert to make sure that there are no other underlying issues causing this problem.

Reset the Trap

Luckily, the most common cause of this unpleasant odor is often solved easily. It involves a little element known as the trap. Located at the U-shaped bend under your sink, the trap is there to build a barrier between your drain and the sewage system. It does so by holding water which creates this barrier that doesn’t let any foul smells into your home.

However, if you haven’t used a drain for a while the trapped water may evaporate, causing the smells to invade your home. To solve this simply leave the water running through that drain for a few seconds to reset the trap. If the drain is on your bathroom floor simply pour a bucket of water down that same drain. If this does not solve the issue, proceed to the next step.

Get Your Hands Dirty

If running water down the drain does not solve the issue, the other likely cause for the smell is a biofilm formation in your pipes. Biofilm is a colony of bacteria and other organisms such as fungi and yeast, many of which are pathogenic. They often form underneath kitchen sinks due to food disposal, and less so in other areas of your home.

The only way to solve this problem is to roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty. If you want to tackle the problem yourself, remove the drain cover and scrub the sludge with a long, flexible brush. Depending on the shape of your pipe and how deep the formation is this might prove to be a difficult task. You could also pour a bleach solution down the drain so that it coats the pipe. Alternatively, you could turn to eco-friendly plumbing products to get rid of the biofilm.

Call in for Backup

If none of this works, it’s time to consult a pro. If the same smell is present at several drains, the problem might be much more complicated. Either the plumbing equipment is faulty or there’s something wrong with the local sewer system.

If the problem does not manifest in other homes, your home’s plumbing is likely the cause. In this case, contacting a professional San Diego plumber to find the issue is imperative. Get in touch with a reputable plumber to locate the problem as quickly as possible or risk a potential hazard. Expert plumbers have all sorts of diagnostic tools at their disposal so they can find the source of the smell and act accordingly. It could be something as simple as a clog, or you might need to have a segment of your sewer line replaced.