The Professional Choice

A companion overview to the popular "Ask Mr. Handyman" radio program airing on Christian Talk Radio, KCRO 660AM Saturdays @ 9:30AM.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Smell Sewer Gas?

All plumbing fixtures have drain traps – a bend in the drainpipe that is always filled with water. The water stops smelly sewer gases from entering your house. The traps below your sinks are replenished every time you run the water, but in most homes the traps below the basement or laundry room floor drains never are refilled. The water evaporates, and sewer gases start wafting up from the drain.

If you have a basement floor drain you should pour some water down the drain on occasion to refill the trap and prevent the sewer gas from entering your home. Of course, sewer gas smells but it could overcome you and be potentially dangerous. Seldom used bathrooms should have the water run in the sink, shower or bathtub and the toilet flushed atleast once a month to keep the traps full of water. There also is a trap for the washing machine drain pipe. If you have unused hook-ups from moving your laundry room or you rarely use your laundry equipment, keep that trap filled with water or have the pipe capped off.

Evaporation of the water in the drain traps can be as fast as a few days to a few weeks. A few minutes of your time to pour some water down those drains will keep you safe and keep the sewer gas out of your home.