Plumbing: How to stop odors in your lines

Having foul odors coming from the pipes in your home is not something anyone wants to experience. A number of different issues can be the cause of the smell, but they have one thing in common, your desire to know how to stop the odors in your lines. The causes of the odors depend on which lines they are coming from.

Toilet odor

When the odor is coming from the toilet the most common cause is a breach in the seal between the toilet and the floor. If the seal has broken, the water from each flush can be penetrating the floor instead of going down into the system.

The way plumbing works, flushing pushes air into the vent and the water down into the system, a blockage in the vent can also cause odor problems since the air cannot move up and out. If water is leaking into the flooring it can cause serious damage beyond just the bad smell.

Washer odor

The water from your washer is drained out into the plumbing in your home. If you are getting water backup and/or a bad smell coming from the drain you are likely suffering from either a blocked vent or a clogged drain both of which can be fixed by a qualified professional plumber.

Dishwasher odor

Many dishwashers are connected to the plumbing for the kitchen sink. When there is a blockage in the pipe or vent it can cause the odor to migrate from one to the other.


The plumbing in your home is complex and when it fails, calling in a qualified professional to take care of it is important. Allowing any of these issues to continue unchecked can lead to expensive damage to your home. As a preventive measure against foul odors add water on a regular basis to little-used plumbing.