If your shower is smelling not-so-fresh lately, then we have some good news for you – it’s probably nothing to worry about! In this article, we are going to cover 4 of the most common causes for a smelly shower, and how you can fix them quickly and easily yourself. Luckily, all 4 reasons can be quickly resolved – unless there is a greater underlying problem, that is.
First, find the source of the smell.
The first thing you’ll want to do is identify where the smell is coming from. Is it emanating from the drain, or is the entire bathroom smelling after your shower? If it’s just the drain, then you’re in luck – chances are there’s an easy fix. However, if the smell is coming from the entire bathroom, then you may have a bigger problem on your hands, like a sewer gas leak.
Problem #1: A Clogged Drain.
Drain clogs are one of the most common causes of a smelly shower. If you notice that your drain is draining more slowly than usual, or if there is standing water in your shower, then this is likely the cause. To fix a clogged drain, you can try using a plunger or a snake to clear it out yourself. However, if this doesn’t work, or if you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, then you can always call a professional plumber.
What causes shower drain clogs?
There are a few different things that can cause your shower drain to become clogged. The most common culprit is hair – over time, hair can build up and create a blockage in your drain. Another common cause of clogs is soap scum. When water mixes with the oils in soap, it creates a substance that can adhere to the sides of your pipes and slowly build up over time. Lastly, dirt and other debris can also collect in your drain and cause a clog.
How do you clear a shower drain clog?
There are a few different ways that you can clear a shower drain clog. The first thing you can try is using a plunger. If this doesn’t work, then you can try using a drain snake or a plumber’s auger to remove the blockage. However, if these methods don’t work, or if you don’t feel comfortable doing them
Problem #2: Biofilm Buildup.
If you’ve ever taken a shower in a hotel room or at a public gym, then you may have noticed that the drains tend to smell pretty bad. This is because of biofilm buildup.
What is biofilm?
Biofilm is a thin layer of bacteria that forms on the surface of objects that are constantly wet, like shower drains. Over time, the bacteria in the biofilm builds up to the point where it has a think, slimy consistency, causing slow draining pipes and a foul smell.
Don’t get it confused with mold, however, as biofilm is not the same thing. Mold is a type of fungus that can also cause a musty smell, and can actually be dangerous to your health if not cleaned.
How to clean shower biofilm:
The good news is that biofilm is relatively easy to clean! You can use a store-bought cleaner, or you can make your own by mixing equal parts vinegar and water. If the biofilm is located in your drain, then just pour it down the drain, let it sit for a few minutes, and then flush with hot water. If the biofilm is on your shower tiles, then spray it on and scrub with a brush.
Problem #3: Dirty P-Trap.
A P-Trap is a curved section of pipe that is located under your sink. Its purpose is to trap water in order to prevent sewer gas from entering your home. Over time, P-Traps are notorious for becoming dirty and clogged with debris, which causing them to stop working properly. If this happens, then you may notice a foul smell coming from your drain. Unfortunately, this smell is… sewage.
How does a P-Trap work?
A P-Trap is installed under your sink and connected to the drainpipe. Water flows into the P-Trap and fills it up, creating a water seal that prevents sewer gas from escaping into your home. When you use your sink, the water in the P-Trap is displaced and drains out of the P-Trap. However, over time the P-Trap can become clogged with debris or dried out, which causes it to stop working properly.
How do you clean your P-Trap?
Clean your P-Trap every few months to prevent it from becoming clogged or dried out. You can do this by unscrewing the P-Trap from the drainpipe and removing any debris that may be inside. Once you’ve done this, rinse the P-Trap with water and screw it back into place. Read this blog post to learn more about unclogging your bathroom sink – Step 5 will explain how to take your P-Trap apart and clean it effectively.
Problem #4: Leaking Pipes.
If a pipe is leaking, then you may notice a musty smell in your bathroom. This is because water is seeping out of the pipe and into the surrounding area, which can cause mold and mildew to grow. If you think you have a leaking pipe, then it’s important to call a plumber as soon as possible. Leaking pipes can cause serious damage to your home if they’re not fixed in a timely manner.
How do I know if I have a leaky pipe?
There are several signs that you may have a leaky pipe, including:
- Water stains on ceilings or walls…
- Mold or mildew growth…
- Pooled water around your bathroom sink or tub…
- Hissing or dripping sound coming from your pipes…
Unless you have X-ray vision, you probably won’t be able to see if a pipe is leaking. So it’s best to call a plumber if you suspect this is the cause of your smelly shower.
Western Rooter & Plumbing can help!
Here at Western Rooter & Plumbing, we have over 30 years of experience dealing with all sorts of plumbing problems. So if your shower is smelling weird, then give us a call and we’ll be happy to help you figure out the cause. As your trusted local emergency plumbers, we’re available 24/ hours a day, seven days a week, so don’t hesitate to reach out to us!
For a full list of areas and cities we service, visit our plumbing service areas.