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Home » Drains Issues & Solutions | Wimpy’s Plumbing & Air


Drains Issues

My Drains Smell Bad

Every so often, someone calls us complaining that their drains smell bad and they can’t seem to figure out what is causing the odor. And it’s a good thing they call!  If you smell something and it seems to be coming from your drains, there’s a chance that something serious and unhygienic is going on, and you should take care of it as soon as you can.

The most common cause of foul smelling drains is a problem with the p-trap. Every sink should have this bent pipe under it. The best-known function of a p-trap is to trap debris that gets flushed down your drain, so it doesn’t flow any farther into your pipes and cause a major clog. However, this pipe also traps water in the bend. This water keeps any noxious or bad-smelling gasses from flowing up and into your home. If this pipe runs dry, you will smell a foul odor.

Sometimes, a bad drain smell is caused by a malfunctioning or poorly designed drain vent system. There are always sewer gasses in your plumbing system; it’s just the way these things work. Your drain lines need to be able to vent these gasses so they don’t cause problems and odors. When the gasses can’t vent well, they can raise the pressure in your system, which can cause water flow problems as well as foul odors. When this gets bad enough, the gasses can push past or through any blockage, releasing themselves into your home.

Finally, a bad odor can be a sign of problems with the sewer line itself. It’s important to get these fixed as soon as possible, or you could be facing more costly repairs down the road.

If you have bad smells coming from your drains, we’d be happy to examine your plumbing system and give you a free estimate for fixing the problem. Contact Wimpy’s plumbing at (941) 322-1911 or make an appointment online.

Drain Care

If you want your drains to keep flowing well for a long time, there are some simple things you can do to help the work well.

Keep hair out of the drains. If you shave, wipe the whiskers out of the sink instead of just washing them down. And rinse your razor in a small container of water, then strain the water through a fine strainer to keep the hair out of the drain. If you have long hair, brush it well right before you get in the shower. While a few hairs won’t harm a drain, they definitely build up over time and can cause significant clogs down the road.

Use a mesh screen over your drains. These are especially useful in the kitchen sink and in showers. They will catch any debris that tries to flow into your drain, so it can’t build up and cause clogging. Be sure to empty these screens into the trash regularly, so the screen itself isn’t inhibiting the flow of water down your drain.

Keep fats, oils, and grease out of your drains. These may be liquid when you pour them down, but they congeal as they cool. They can bind to your drain as they harden, narrowing it and trapping more debris. These can become major clogs.

Finally, remember that your garbage disposal can’t do everything. Don’t use it to grind up bones (even small ones!) or especially fibrous items (like corn husks). These can damage the disposal itself, or let chunks through that will cause clogs later. Be reasonable with your disposal usage, and your drains will have great longevity.

If you’re not sure whether something will damage your drains, give us a call. We can come out to check them, and give you a free estimate on any necessary repairs. Make an appointment on our website, or call us at (941) 322-1911. 

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