You know what kind of smell I’m talking about – that rotten eggs smell, the smell of sewer gases. You’ll know it when you smell it and you certainly can’t miss it. But sometimes you can’t tell where it’s coming from or what’s causing the problem. Here are some suggestions for handling this unpleasant – and potentially dangerous – plumbing problem.
If the smell is coming from the shower or bathtub:
Again, check for leaks in the traps in these drains. Since it’s not always as easy to see this plumbing as it is the plumbing under your sink, remove drain covers to make sure there’s water standing in the drain and that the water appears undisturbed. If there’s no water visible or if you see movement or notice the smell is stronger, it may be that you have a leak somewhere in the trap and the reason you have that smell is because that water barrier we talked about earlier is gone.
If the smell is coming from the toilet:
Again, there’s a reason for that water in your toilet bowl, other than the obvious. That water is another barrier between the sewer system and your house. It traps those sewer gases on the outside. Most toilets are also constructed to have a trap underneath, similar to your sink. So if you have no water in your toilet bowl it could be that you have a leak in that trap.
Check the wax seal around the base of the toilet, as well. These seals need to be replaced ccasionally and a faulty seal could be the source of your odor problem.
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