Troubleshooting Septic Problems

Troubleshooting Septic Problems

When Your Drain Smells

by Max Wagner

You've just cleaned the house and everything should smell lemony clean. Then you catch a whiff of something foul coming from your drain, something that smells like a combination of rotten food and wet dog. Whenever your drains really start to smell, you need to investigate to find the cause. Sometimes a bad odor is a sign of a big drain problem. Worse, the odors themselves can be dangerous to your health. 

Health Dangers

When you smell hydrogen sulfide, or sewer gas, over a period of time, the stench can cause a variety of symptoms. You can develop headaches, sinus infections, fatigue, poor memory, and irritability, among other medical issues. This smell is not just an annoyance: It's a serious health issue.

Dry P-Traps

Drains have a p-trap that seals when water is run down the drain. If you have a drain that is rarely used, the seal can go dry. The pressure in the drain become unequal and lets the nasty sewer gasses into your home. Sometimes the smell can be cured by simply running a combination of hot water and baking soda down the drain. Lemon juice and scented oils are also sometimes effective on the smell. If your DIY steps do not cure the smell issue, you may have a more serious problem on your hands. 


Even though your pipes are not entirely blocked, they may have layers of buildup that include food scraps, grease, and other grunge. All the debris that doesn't get washed away can ferment and rot in your drains and pipes. If you do not address this issue, you may end up with a serious blockage that will be expensive to repair, which is why drain cleaning can be an important step to take. 

Sewer Lines

A strong sewer smell can mean that you have a crack in one or more of  your pipes. A healthy sewage system should not stink. The only place the odor should be evident is on the roof by the vent stacks. The scent of actual sewage should never be in your home. If a dry p-trap is not the problem, you need to have your system cleaned and evaluated by professionals. 

Blocked drains smell awful and make your home unpleasant while adversely affecting your health and the health of your family. They often indicate serious drain and pipe issues as well. If simply deodorizing your pipes doesn't help, contact a reputable pipe and drain cleaning business for help. They can clean your drains and diagnose your drainage problems, leaving your home smelling fresh once again. 


About Me

Troubleshooting Septic Problems

When we first purchased our home in the mountains, I had no idea what I was up against. Whenever we would visit, I was surprised to see and smell the way that the property had changed. I realized that the vacation home always smelled like sewage, and it was really worrisome. I knew that I needed to do something to make things right, so I started looking into the plumbing system. I discovered that we had a septic tank, and that it needed to be pumped. This blog is all about troubleshooting septic system problems so that you can keep your place clean and sanitary.