How to clean smelly drains?

Kitchen drains sometimes smell bad. That is completely normal and it is due to the grease that builds up in there, traps food residue, produces bacteria and attracts fruit flies and other pests. A similar buildup occurs in the bathroom but it is caused by soap, toothpaste and body oils collecting hair and dead skin cells. Whenever you start smelling your drain, it probably means that a clog is starting to develop down there. We will show you some methods that you can use in which situations. They will help you remove the clog and clean your drain

The truth is, you don’t actually need a professional plumber to help you with this kitchen cleaning issue. As long as your drain is not completely clogged, you can manage on your own. We want to show you how to do that with simple, non-toxic ingredients that you can easily find at home. Keep reading to find out what methods we have to offer, start with the one that is most convenient for you and maybe try out a couple of them. Some people say that a combination of methods works best, others swear by one of them. Go ahead and try them out.

The Hot Water Method
You use hot water and soap for your greasy dishes, right? The same combination will also clean your drain. Bring a pot of water to a boil, then turn off the heat. Stir in a few drops of liquid dish detergent. When the solution is mixed, pour half of it down your drain. Wait 5 minutes for the boiling water and soap to dissolve the greasy residue in your drain. After 5 minutes, turn your cold water on. That will solidify any leftover greasy buildup. Pour the remaining hot water down the drain to remove the congealed residue.

Vinegar Against Stinky Drains

Vinegar is a great deodoriser when it comes to smelly drains. What is more, it cuts through grease and dissolves biofilm. In fact, it is so powerful that if you pour some hot vinegar down your drain, it will be able to break down small clogs. If you want to clean your smelly drain with vinegar, bring 4 cups to a boil and pour half of them down your drain. Wait 5 minutes and turn on your cold water. Then pour the rest of the hot vinegar to rinse.

Baking Soda Saves the Day
Maybe you have already used baking soda and vinegar to clean different areas of your house. Maybe you have made a volcano in school. The powerful reaction between the two is great for removing the smell from your clogged drain. It will remove that horrible rotten stench and ensure that your drain is unclogged and properly cleaned. To do this, run hot water for a couple of minutes. It will soften any buildup and help with dissolving it. Dump 1 cup baking soda down the drain and pour 2 cups of vinegar right after it. Wait for the foaming and fizzing to stop, then run hot and cold water in that order for one minute each.

Plastic Drain Snake
This method is not as convenient, since you probably don’t have a plastic snake just laying around. If you don’t have one, maybe you should consider changing that. If your drain smells bad often, get one of those drain snakes – they work. It is fairly easy to use. Remove your drain plug and insert the snake down the drain. Hold it by the plastic end and slowly turn it. It is covered in small bristles that will collect any hair and other debris that are coating the inside of your drain. Be prepared for the results – they might be gruesome but trust us, it is totally worth it.

Bathroom and kitchen drains are not the only ones that might become smelly with time. You may experience similar issues with your washing machine drain. If there is greasy buildup in your drain line, you might get bad odours coming from your washing machine as well. You can find the line inserted in the drain box behind your washing machine.
Mark the point where the line disappears into the box. Carefully remove the line from the drain box and insert a funnel where it was.
Bring 4L of water and 1L of white distilled vinegar to a simmer. carefully pour half of the mixture down the funnel, then cold water, then the rest of the solution.
Insert back the line until you reach the mark.

Tips on how to prevent your drains from smelling:

  • Do not pour grease down your drain.
  • Flush your kitchen drain with hot water after you are done doing your dishes.
  • Sprinkle baking soda down your drains once a week to prevent bad odours from reappearing
  • Pour hot vinegar down your bathroom drains once a week in order to cut through soap scum and body oils.
  • Use a plastic drain snake every 2-3 months.
  • Make sure to run water down all the drains you don’t use as often. That will prevent your p-trap from drying and allowing sewer gasses in your house.

If those home remedies don’t seem to be working, you may want to call professionals. Sometimes the smell is caused by a clog in your main drain line. This clog can be trees or organic material. Such issues should be resolved by professionals in order to avoid damage and accidents. Do not forget to tell your plumber about any chemicals/cleaning solutions you have used in your drain.

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