Ways to Eliminate Drain Odors

Have you ever entered your kitchen only to get hit in the face by a foul smell? You start searching—it’s not the garbage can, and the nasty odor isn’t coming from the fridge. No, the perpetrator appears to be an icky and pungent kitchen drain. Thankfully, with a little investigating and drain-cleaning efforts, you can say goodbye to that undesirable stench and say hello to freshness!

Why Does My Drain Smell Bad??

Your sink can develop an offensive odor for several reasons. Pinpointing the cause is the starting point to freshening up your kitchen and preventing a recurrence. The most frequent culprits include:

  • Bacteria: A kitchen drain covered with food particles, grease buildup and other crud is a breeding ground for bacteria and other microorganisms that produce unpleasant odors as they feed.
  • Plugged drain: Obstructed pipes can lead to stagnant water and bacteria growth, making the smell worse.
  • Sewer gases: If the P-trap below the sink dries out, sewer gases may emanate from the drain, creating a lingering sewer smell. This oftentimes happens in seldom-used plumbing fixtures
  • Plumbing errors: From DIY problems to missing traps or drain vents, plumbing issues can allow nasty smells to permeate your living space.

How 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 to near-boiling and slowly pour it into the drain. The hot water clears out the debris and vinegar counteracts the scent.
  • Baking soda and vinegar: Get started with the hot water strategy mentioned above. If it’s inadequate, pour a cup of baking soda into the drain and then pour two cups of hot vinegar. Watch it fizz and leave it for an hour. Then, flush the drain with more hot water to get rid of stubborn gunk and bacteria.
  • P-trap cleaning: Don your rubber gloves and put a bucket underneath the P-trap. Unfasten the pipe by hand or with a wrench, if required, and remove it. Dump the contents into the trash, wash out the pipe and reassemble your sink’s plumbing.
  • A note on bleach: Although bleach is a good antibacterial agent, bleach is not ideal for cleaning drains. It can damage your pipes and potentially create toxic gases, so don’t use bleach in this situation.

Tips for Pleasant-Smelling Drains

It’s very easy to keep reeking drains under control with a little routine cleaning. Here’s what we encourage:

  • Run your garbage disposal and flush it with cold water for 20 seconds after grinding up food to totally flush particles out the pipes.
  • Rinse the drain once a week with a gallon of near-boiling water to protect against the buildup of odor-causing debris.
  • Run water down rarely used sinks to keep the P-trap filled. For additional protection, pour a bit of mineral oil in the drain, because that slows down evaporation.
  • Pour a handful of baking soda into the drain followed by hot water to absorb and reduce any odors.
  • Once in a while, follow up the baking soda method with a cup of white vinegar for a even greater clean. Let it sit for 30 minutes, then flush the drain completely with hot water.
  • Cut up lemon or orange peels to leave your sink smelling fragrant.
  • Make use of enzyme cleaners to prevent the buildup of odor-causing residue without turning to harsh chemicals.
  • Hire a specialist to inspect your plumbing occasionally. This can help detect odor-causing scenarios before they become trouble.
  • Don’t ever put grease and other kitchen scraps or substances into the drain that can easily clog or decay, such as coffee grounds and fibrous vegetables.
  • Use mesh strainers to catch food debris and other debris before they go down the drain. Then, throw the debris from the strainers into the trash to keep your pipes flowing smoothly and smelling fresh.
  • Hire professional drain cleaning to ensure a thorough job. Licensed plumbers have the tools and skill to handle tough clogs and smelly problems. Additionally, they can give personalized advice specific to your home’s plumbing system.

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

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

So, the next time your smelly drains make you want to gag, go with the knowledgeable pros at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Schedule your appointment by contacting us at 866-397-3787 today!

  • 10 Questions to Ask an HVAC Contractor

    Choosing the right HVAC contractor to replace or service your home comfort system can seem daunting. That decision is important because the contractor you hire heavily impacts your HVAC system’s quality, durability and efficiency for years to come. To help you make an informed decision,... Continue reading

  • Are Chemical Drain Cleaners Safe to Use?

    Unblocking a blocked drain can be nasty work, so many homeowners use chemical drain cleaners to wash away the crud. Bottles of these chemicals are often found in cleaning cabinets, but are they really safe? Dive into the world of chemical drain cleaners, find out how they function and learn why... Continue reading

  • Why Drain Cleaning is Important

    It’s spring and that means many homeowners in the U.S. have been organizing their closets, steam cleaning the carpets, and giving the house a deep scrub. But what about your drains? You can’t forget to clean out your drains! You probably have a store-bought drain cleaning product for when... Continue reading