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Reasons for Sewer Odors from Your Drains

The plumbing in your home is designed to keep the fresh water and wastewater systems separate: fresh water flows into your home through faucets, and wastewater leaves through drains. And once wastewater goes down drains, that should be the end of it.

But sometimes, you’ll pick up the odor of a sewer coming from your drains. Aside from how unpleasant this is, it can also indicate a serious problem developing inside your plumbing. We’ve listed some of the reasons that this might occur, and what you should do about them. Call At Your Service Plumbing, Heating & Air when you need plumbing repair service in Salt Lake City.

Reasons for the odors from your drains

  • Dried p-trap: The p-trap is the name for the curved pipe underneath a sink. (It looks like a P when viewed from the side, which is where it gets its name.) The p-trap collects water after you run water down the drain, and this standing water serves as a plug to prevent sewer gas from coming back up the pipe and out the drain. If the p-trap dries up because the sink sees little use, odors will start escaping. To prevent this, just run water through the drain for a minute or so, and try to regularly run water down sinks that aren’t used often.
  • Blocked exhaust vents: To help vent sewer gas from your home and equalize pressure inside the plumbing, your pipes have vents installed that send sewer gas out through the roof while allowing air in. If these vents become blocked (debris, animal nests, etc.), it will force the sewer gas back down the pipes and bubble it up through the water in the p-trap. Don’t go to the roof to try to fix this yourself. Call a professional plumber.
  • Sewer line troubles: This is the most serious issue. If you detect sewer odors coming from more than one drain, and also notice clogging and low toilet water levels, then you may have damage in the sewer line that runs under your house and to the main line in the street. This will require professionals to dig down to the trench to fix or replace the damaged line. You need to have this done immediately, before sewage starts to backflow into your house or flood the basement.

Unless the problem is a dried p-trap, which you can easily solve on your own, you will need the work of skilled plumbers to handle issues with the backflow of sewer gases into your home. Call At Your Service Plumbing, Heating & Air, any time of the day or night, for the quick and effective plumbing repair in Salt Lake City, UT that will clear up the problem before it becomes an even larger problem.

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