The Definitive Guide to Solving Smelly Drains


smelly drains


Our team at ASL receive constant calls regarding the common problem of blocked, smelly drains. Only last week we were called out to help a family in Bracknell where a blocked drain was causing a terrible smell. 

While this may seem like a simple issue to fix, many people leave the problem untreated, causing serious issues over time. Smelly drains, fortunately, are a common problem – meaning that you do not need to worry.  

While a drain from the outside might look clean and seem to run smoothly, the problem usually lies deep within the pipes. Leaving a blocked drain is dangerous and could end up costing you more money if it isn’t solved swiftly and effectively. That’s why we thought we’d write you a definitive guide to solving smelly drains.

The Cause of Smelly Drains

The main issue with smelly drains is that they won’t just affect the room the smell is emanating from. Eventually, the odour will reach other areas of your property, resulting in a constant bad smell. Smelly drains can be caused my numerous things. So, if your kitchen sink smells or your bathroom sinks are emitting bad odours, below are the most common causes.

Trapped Food Causes Smelly Drains

Arguably the most common reason for drain smells and blockages is trapped food. Shower drains, kitchen and bathroom sinks are all easily blocked, even if you think you’re being careful. Small bits of food, coffee, oil, whatever it may be, all cause blockages. 

However, if it is food that’s causing blockages – boiling hot water and bleach should usually solve the issue. This helps loosen the food and wash it away.  

Partial Blockages and Smelly Drains

Partial blockages are also a common cause of smelly drains. These are caused by non decomposable products getting caught within the pipeline and blocking the usual free-flowing function of the drain. Again, this can cause smells to emanate from the pipes within.  

Pipe Accessories Can Make Drains Smelly

Many may find this strange but pipe accessories are known to make sink drains smelly. Granted, this does depend on the material of your drain pipes and what your accessories are made from. Certain accessories can rust and absorb foreign materials, causing damage to both your pipeline and rough smells.  

If you believe this is a problem that you’re experiencing, our team at ASL Limited are trained to handle such a problem. It is best that you call an expert rather than attempting to unblock the drain yourself.  

How to Prevent Smelly Drains

As we always say at ASL Limited, prevention is better than a cure. To prevent such smells and odours from emanating from your drains, there are a few simple steps you can take.

Prevent Food Falling into Your Drains

Stop food and other items from falling down the drain. As we mentioned previously, food that is caught inside the drain can cause smells as bad as rotten eggs or sewage, so try and use a plug. Plugs help to catch any food debris or miscellaneous items that might try and find their way down your drain!

Keep Fats, Oils, and Debris Away from Your Drains

Fats and oils need to stay as far away from your drain as possible. Such liquids easily form significant build-ups within your drain and if left untreated, can cause serious problems. Hair and soap are also typical issues that can cause smelly drains. It’s important to keep an eye on your bathroom cleanliness, as hair gets washed down the sink and shower almost every day – which requires weekly clean-outs.  

 Cleaning Smelly Drains

Simple but effective – cleaning your drains is essential if you’re looking to keep them in good condition and not incur any unnecessary call-out costs. Knowing how to clean your drains can not only save you time and effort but also save you money in the long-term. 

Preparing the Drain for Cleaning

Before you begin your clean-out, you must remember to clear you drain of any obvious debris – this includes hair, soap or any other bulk items that are immediately apparent. This will allow your cleaning to be more effective and should stop any other miscellaneous waste from being washed further down the drain. 

Flush Water Through the Drain

First and foremost, pour hot water down the drain, this will help loosen any initial debris. Wait 5 minutes, then follow with cold water to destroy any remaining grease. If there is still a lingering smell, try using white vinegar as this works effectively to get rid of bad odours.

It is good to maintain the health of your drain by washing it out with boiling water at the end of each day. This is an effective technique as it keeps your drains running smoothly and stops material from building up.   

Clean Smelly Drains with Baking Soda

Baking soda works wonders for cleaning drains. Mixed with boiling water, it’s able to kill almost all odours! Simply place a teaspoon of baking soda down your drain and quickly follow it with boiling water. This allows the soda to do its work, while you continue to pour water down the drain for around 15-20 seconds. This is one of the most effective ways of removing stubborn grease and smells from your drains.

Buy a Stronger Drain Cleaning Solution

Sometimes the above methods may not prove useful – if so, we recommend buying a stronger cleaning solution that can tackle stubborn drain issues. Corrosive drain cleaner is definitely on our recommended list as it usually makes light work of blockages.  

If Smelly Drains Persist, Call Us Today

smelly drainsIf all else fails and the problem persists, give us a call today! There may be a more serious underlying issue that you haven’t discovered and if so, this will require professional intervention.

Have the problem of smelly drains fixed by our team today by calling us on So, 0800 181684. Our team would be more than happy to help.

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