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My House’s Drains Smell Bad—What’s Wrong?

Posted on: July 25, 2016

You want to keep as pleasant and inviting a home as possible. So when you begin to notice unpleasant odors inside your house that seem to be coming from one or more of the drains, you want to have the problem solved as soon as possible.

But… what is the problem? And how serious is it? There are a number of different possibilities for foul-smelling drains, ranging from minor troubles you can solve on your own to major plumbing issues that can threaten to damage your home unless professional plumbers fix them. Below are some of the reasons for bad smells from drains, in order of least-severe to highest-concern:

  • Dried p-trap: The p-trap is the curved pipe section under the sink. Its purpose is to hold an amount of water to serve as a barrier against sewer odors coming back up the pipe. If a sink isn’t used for a few weeks, the p-trap can lose all its water, and bad odors will come up the drain. All you have to do to fix this is to run water down the drain for a few minutes to restore the water barrier.
  • Organic waste: This is a common problem for kitchen drains. If too much grease, fat, oil, and food particles become stuck to the drain walls, they’ll start to rot and give off horrid smells. Call a plumber to arrange for drain cleaning that will take care of this.
  • Blocked drain vents: Your plumbing system has drain vents to prevent a pressure build-up between the drains and the sewer line. Should the vents become blocked, sewer gas will be forced up through p-traps and into your house. Call professional plumbers to find where the problem is and fix it.
  • Damaged or clogged sewer line: If drains all over your house are emitting noxious smells, you likely have a damaged or blocked sewer line. This must be fixed ASAP before sewages starts to flow into your home. Call plumbers with the special skill and equipment to handle this job.

Bud Matthews Services in Durham, NC offers high quality drain cleaning and sewer line services. Contact us for all your home service needs!

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We recognize that our services are of a special and often emergency nature, and we remain fully committed to fulfilling the needs of our community even as potential demand for our services may increase with more families either choosing to or being required to remain home for extended periods of time. More importantly, the safety of our employees and customers is always our highest priority, and we recognize that heightened diligence and focus on health and safety is required during these challenging times. We are actively monitoring updates from the CDC, WHO and local health officials; and we have been proactively and continually implementing measures and developing plans to prioritize the health and well-being of our employees and customers. Including:

  • Equipping all technicians with masks, gloves, and disinfectants.
  • Social distancing – Avoid handshakes and limit direct contact with customers during their visit.
  • Requiring technicians to clean all surfaces with disinfectants before and after performing work.
  • Requiring all employees to stay home if they are experiencing symptoms such as shortness of breath, coughing or fever.