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Tuckers Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing Blog

Reasons for Bad Odors Coming from Your Drains

You notice a strange, unpleasant odor wafting through your house. When you track it down, you discover it’s coming from one (or more) of your drains.

The reasons for foul drain odors range from simple problems you can fix yourself in a few minutes to serious troubles that require professional plumbing service as soon as possible. Call Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating when you need plumbing in Gaithersburg, MD to solve those bad-smelling drains.

Sources for bad odors from drains

  • Dry p-trap: The p-trap is the curved pipe underneath your drain. It’s designed to trap water to serve as a plug that will prevent sewer smells from wafting back up the drainpipe. However, if all the water in the p-trap evaporates, nothing will stop the sewer smells from entering your house. This is a problem encountered with sinks you don’t use often, such as sinks connected to unused bedrooms, or laundry room sinks. If you run water through the drain at least once a week, the problem will go away.
  • Sewer lines problems: The sewer line carries the wastewater from your home out to the municipal sewer main in the street. Should the sewer line from your house become clogged or suffer from breaks, the sewage will start to back up in your drain pipes, leading to those foul odors. This requires immediate attention from professional plumbers before the back up of sewage starts to flood into the foundation of your house.
  • Bad venting: Most drains have venting pipes that releases the back-flowing gases that the p-trap stops. The venting pipes run up the roof, but should these exit vents become blocked with debris or animal nests, the sewer gases will be forced to bubble back up through the water in the p-trap. If you hear gurgling from your drains along with the smell, this is the most likely cause. (Don’t go up to the roof to clear the vent; it’s dangerous, and it might not be the reason for the sewer smells.)

When you need to call professionals

A dry p-trap is an easy fix: just run water down the drain, and do so at regular intervals. For other problems that cause unpleasant sewer odors to come through your drains, you will need the help of professional plumbers. If you suspect that a sewer line break is behind the drain smells, you need trained plumbers on the job immediately.

For quality plumbing in Gaithersburg, MD, look to the services of Tuckers Air Conditioning & Heating. We offer free estimates and free second opinions.

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