Under normal circumstances, your water and your plumbing don’t do much to draw attention to themselves. Water comes out when using a tap or faucet, and water or other waste goes down a drain or toilet into your sewage line, safely disposed of.
But on rare occasions, you may notice what your plumbing is up to, and not in a good way. Turning on the faucet may result in a foul smell coming from water itself. Walking past a drain, you may notice an odor coming up.
This is never something you should ignore, but luckily the solutions for these problems may not be as complicated as you think.
A drain that has a sewer-like smell coming from it may be suffering from a dried out p-trap.
Your p-trap is just the series of bends in the plumbing pipes under your sink.
It’s designed that way in order to hold a certain amount of water that acts as a vapor barrier keeping the smelly gases of the sewer from entering your home.
A p-trap can either dry out or lose water by being pushed or sucked out as water in the plumbing of other parts of the house creates a change in air pressure that’s strong enough to affect other parts.
If you have an empty p-trap, it’s easy enough to fix; just pour in more water, and you’re done.
Water smelling bad is a definite problem and in some cases, may even pose a health risk. Usually, the source of bad smelling water is your hot water, and the most common cause of this is bacteria that have infiltrated your water heater tank.
If the temperature in a water heater tank is too cool, then it provides a warm, wet environment that is perfect for certain types of bacteria.
Fortunately, bacteria are still delicate, and if you turn up the temperature in your water heater tank to 135-140°F, that’s a heat level capable of killing off the vast majority of bacteria, including the harmful types that can cause illness.
If the smell from your plumbing is coming from drains but is not localized to just one, you may have a sewage line issue.
There can be a lot of different causes for this. On the lighter side of things, simple DIY solutions like clearing out ventilation of obstructions will allow gases to naturally leave your house.
However, more serious issues can also be the problem, such as a break somewhere in your sewage line, or the sewage itself being backed up.
In these cases, only a professional with the right tools and experience will be able to safely repair what could be a very serious problem.
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This is the 1st time that I used James Caccia Plumbing and it will not be the last. I called early Monday morning to schedule an appointment for a clogged drain. They were able to provide me service the same day. They gave me a window from 2-4pm for service and they said that they would call if they could come earlier. They called 30 minutes prior to arrival for a 2pm start. My technician's name was Denver and he was fantastic. He gave a free estimate and clearly explained the scope of work prior to service. When the job was bigger than anticipated and he needed assistance with equipment, the office was able to quickly respond and send another tech for assistance so I did not have to re-schedule. Daniel was the 2nd tech and he was also great. They worked their butts off and were positive, friendly, and very focused. They did a great job and were thorough checking that everything was working properly before they left. Their work area was also cleaner that it was when they started. Thanks for a great service experience.