How to remedy drain odors

Written by sueanne dolentz
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Everyone has had them and everyone hates them. They’re drain odours and they’re not only obnoxious, but easy to fix as well. No need to call a plumber, here’s how to prevent and remedy that nasty smell coming from your drain.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Baking Soda
  • Drain Cleaner
  • Vinegar

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  1. 1

    Run very hot tap water through the drain after each use. This will prevent build-up in the drain, and hopefully rinse away any foul-smelling residue.

  2. 2

    Avoid getting food or grease in any drain. Once this matter accumulates in the drain, it will begin to decay, causing some pretty nasty odours. Be especially careful of sending hair down the drain. The hair can entrap other odorous material, and do a very effective job of causing major build-up, which will result in one very smelly drain.

  3. 3

    Once a week, pour in a handful of baking soda, and then rinse with very hot water. This will help clear out any existing odours, and prevent further build-up for the time being.

  4. 4

    Pour 1 cup of vinegar down the drain on a regular basis. Then, let it stand for at least 30 minutes before rinsing it away with hot water. The vinegar should eliminate any existing odours, and rinse your drain clean.

  5. 5

    Treat any partially clogged drain promptly. You can find inexpensive drain cleaners at any hardware store. The sooner you treat even a slightly clogged drain, the less likely it will be to cause odour.

Tips and warnings

  • If a drain ends up with major build-up problems, a professional plumber should be called in to take care of the situation. Simple household remedies normally will not do the trick. Industrial strength drain cleaners will need to be used by a professional plumber should the situation become that bad.
  • Be careful when using chemical drain cleaners. They can be dangerous. Should you get any on your skin, wash it off immediately with cold water. Should you get any in your eyes, call a poison control centre immediately for further instructions.
  • If a clogged drain does not clear up with a chemical drain cleaner, and the cleaner remains in the sink, call a plumber. If you try to unclog the drain by other means, the leftover cleaner could splash on you and cause injury.

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