Your kitchen sink is probably one of the most-used drains in the house. Even with strainers, food particles and grease are going to find their way into the pipes. Sometimes they get lodged there and create a less-than-pleasing odor.
But, never fear! There are some very simple remedies that will have your kitchen sink drain deodorized in no time.
- Plain Old Hot Water. You can loosen up and food and grease debris in the drain with a pot of hot water (be sure to pour it very carefully so as not to splash any of the hot water on yourself). The hot water will also flush away any lurking microorganisms.
- Baking Soda and Vinegar. Baking soda is one of those multi-purpose items that can be used for a number of cleaning and deodorizing jobs, including the kitchen sink.
To deodorize a drain, sprinkle a generous amount into the drain followed by 1 or 2 cups of distilled white vinegar. It’s most effective to gently heat the vinegar in the microwave first (and, as a bonus, the heating vinegar will soften any residue in the microwave).
Pour the warmed vinegar into the drain and let the mixture fizz for a few minutes to loosen up any stuck-on grease and food particles. Rinse the drain thoroughly with cold water. Don’t let the baking soda and vinegar mixture sit for an extended period. Vinegar is acidic.
- Baking Soda and Lemon. You can also use lemon juice with baking soda to deodorize the drain. If you have a garbage disposal, you can feed some lemon or other citrus rinds into it. Run the disposal unit and the hot water until the rind is gone.
- Bio-enzyme Drain Cleaners. There are various brands of natural drain cleaners that use enzymes that will eat the food in the drain.
- Ice Cubes and Salt. If you have a garbage disposal unit, running ice cubes and salt through it will help remove particles from the blades.
Problems with the Plumbing
Odors aren’t always generated from food and grease trapped in the drain. Sometimes sewer gasses can find their way in from the sewer through the drain. The problem is often at the trap or the plumbing vent.
The Trap. The trap is the u-shaped part of the drain. It’s called a trap because it traps water to prevent gasses from coming up from the sewer and into the sink. Check to make sure that (1) you have a trap (it’s very unlikely that you do not have a trap); and (2) that it’s not leaking.
The Plumbing Vent. The plumbing vent is the pipe that runs vertically from the drains in your house out through the roof. (They’re sometimes called “stink pipes”). Plumbing vents allow an escape of air, including wastewater gas and odor. This helps to move water through the drain pipes. They also help to prevent sewer gasses from getting into the house by preventing siphoning of water from the traps.
Because the top part of the plumbing vent is exposed to the elements, it can be vulnerable to clogging from such things as an accumulation of leaves and other debris, birds’ nests, or even a small critter moving in to keep warm for the winter. Indications that the plumbing vent is clogged are: sputtering or gurgling toilets; slow draining; and sewer gas odor.
If you do detect a problem with the trap or the vent, you may want to consult a licensed plumber.
For expert repairs and maintenance to your major appliances, call the experts at C&W Services at (855) 358-1496 or (214) 358-1496.