There are many things that can smell gross in your home, but a stinky sink drain is one of the worst. It lingers at the corner of your consciousness, always there, vaguely bothering you. How did it come to this, and how do you fix it There are a few common ways that your drain may have gotten smelly, but that’s between you and your sink. For now, let’s focus on the ways to fix it.
Try hot water first
The first thing you want to try is hot water — very hot water. According to Rakeman Plumbing, this could be all it takes to dislodge whatever food, hair, or other gunk is causing the stink. (It’s true that boiling water can actually do wonders for you around the house.) Once you’ve dumped a few quarts down there, give it a few minutes, then follow up with some cold water. Repeat the process two or three times and see if the smell improves.
One thing you probably don’t want to do is try a chemical cleaner designed for smelly drains. They contain caustic substances that can be damaging to your pipes, which might make your sink problems worse. You should also probably skip the popular baking-soda-and-vinegar combination — it doesn’t work the way people think it does.
Clean your sink’s P-trap
Rakeman points out that if these methods don’t make your sink smell better, the problem could actually be in your P-trap — the rounded pipe under your drain. To clean it, you just put a bucket underneath, use pliers to remove the two nuts holding it in place, and use a bottle brush to clean in there. Flush some water through after you reattach the P-trap. This is obviously more work than just pouring boiling water down your drain, but it might be your best solution.
If you have a garbage disposal
If you have a garbage disposal, you want to be careful that it’s not becoming a smelly hazard. Always run water when you use it (which you know) and throw some ice down there every once in a while to clean and sharpen your blades. After major disposal projects or when you want a fresh scent, toss down a few citrus peels and grind ‘em up to make your sink smell better.
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