When your plumbing isn’t functioning properly, the impact on your household can be inconvenient (clogs, leaks, or bad smells) to devastating (burst pipes and flooding).

At any rate, when something is wrong with your plumbing, clues will be given to help you determine what the problem is.

If you are experiencing foul smells coming from your drains or water, here are some suggestions as to what’s going on.

Investigate Your P-Traps

If your plumbing has been done properly and to code, there should be a trap attached to most of your plumbing fixtures (sinks, toilets, showers, even washing machines).

In most cases, the trap is shaped like a “P”, hence the name. The trap functions to keep smelly sewer gases at bay by retaining a small amount of drain water, which acts like a barrier. If the trap has run dry because of lack of use or if the seal is loose, sewer gases will enter.

If the seal is broken, you’ll need to fix it. It will probably be enough if you let the water run to refill the trap to get rid of the smells.

A Sewer Line Problem

A sewer line problem can be quite serious as it poses a threat of flooding to your home.

Some warning signs include musty smells coming from numerous drains in your home (particularly bad in the basement), damp spots, smells coming from outside your home, sunken patches on your lawn, a hike in your water bills, and low water pressure.

If you are experiencing these problems, you must get plumbing help right away.

Water Heater Situation

Do you detect a rotten egg odor in your water? The reason is the anode rod in your hot water tank. It’s there to keep your water heater from rusting but can produce a chemical reaction that releases sulfuric gas that smells.

This is especially true if your water is too hard, too soft, or if the bacteria count is too high. Replace the anode rod with a new one.


If something is blocking your pipes from being properly ventilated, a suction-type action results in sewer gases.

Instead of them going away from your home, they get funneled up through your drains. Get your drains cleaned regularly to prevent this. Common blockages occur as a result of debris, tree roots, or animal nests.

You Can Count on Erica’s for Your Drains

Think you might need a professional drain cleaning to solve your drain odor issues? Contact us at Erica's Plumbing, Air Conditioning & Restoration today for a fast and reliable solution.

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