The kitchen sink receives a good amount of abuse over time. From washing your hands and soaking pots and pans with baked-on food residue to doing the dinner dishes, it is easy to see the amount of stress the sink and drain experiences. Over time, you may develop foul odors in your sink drain due to this constant use. Fortunately, eradicating the smell is possible with proper understanding and a few simple steps. This guide will help you understand the smelly odors and deodorize your drain.
First and foremost, it is important to determine the underlying cause of the odors. In many cases, the odors are stemming from a minor issue, but other problems that are a bit more problematic may also be causing your sink drain to smell.
If the odor is similar to the smell or rotten eggs, you may have sulfate or hydrogen sulfide in your water supply. These minerals and gasses may be part of nearby groundwater, which easily enters your household’s water supply.
Water heaters that contain aluminum and magnesium anode rods may react poorly with water, resulting in the rotten egg smell, as well. Replacing these rods is important if your foul odors occur when you are using your hot water only.
Food residue and grease is probably the most common cause of foul odors in your drain. If food residue and grease build up in the drain, garbage disposal, or underlying plumbing, it can begin to decompose, causing the drain to have a foul odor.
The type of repair will depend on the specific cause of your foul odor. Therefore, it is smart to have a plumbing contractor inspect your drain and underlying plumbing for signs of distress.
Have your water tested to determine if there are traces of even high levels of sulfate or hydrogen sulfide in your water. If these sediments and gasses are present, consider installing a whole-house water treatment system which restores your home’s water back to its healthy state.
Replacing aluminum or magnesium anode rods with zinc-aluminum anode rods will prevent the reaction in your water heater that leads to the rotten egg smell.
Disinfecting a drain that is full of food residue is not as difficult as the above solutions. However, it is just as important.
Pour a few cups of ice into your drain and turn on the garbage disposal. The disposal will break apart the ice, helping remove food residue and grease from inside the drain and on the blades of the garbage disposal.
Also, a pot of boiling water poured directly into the drain can remove stubborn residue and grease.
Finally, have your kitchen plumber clean any food residue that has built up in the p-trap. This is the pipe that connects the sink drain to the rest of your plumbing, helping move water and waste out of the kitchen sink and away from the home.