How to Get Rid of Kitchen Sink Smell

Preventing a problem is always better than fixing it. It’s still good though to learn how to get rid of kitchen sink smell in case it happens. If it’s a light problem, you can easily fix it. However, a more complicated problem with your sink will need a professional’s intervention. This article will guide you through the issue if your sink ever smells.

What are the causes of smelly drains or smelly sink drains?

1. Rotten food stuck in the sink drain and the garbage disposal
2. Dirty sink not cleaned thoroughly of food particles or rotting food
3. Sewer gas leaking on the plumbing vent

Warning: If you are not sure of the cause of the smell or if your sink smell is mixed with sewer gas smell, we recommend calling a plumber.

As for the first cause here’s what you can try to fix it

Homemade Remedy – How to Get Rid of Kitchen Sink Smell

The ice cube method is a great way to get rid of rotten food particles on your garbage disposal blades. Just pour some ice cubes for your garbage disposal to grind. The ice helps knock food down the drain. The ice cubes won’t damage your garbage disposal or anything.

That’s the easiest and first way to try. If it doesn’t work, the next few methods should do it.

General Sink Cleaning – How to Get Rid of Drain Smell

Step 1: Pour dishwashing soap (or any detergent available) on your sponge or home scrubber.
Step 2: Scrub sink with a home scrubber. Pay attention to scrub the dirtiest portions.
Step 3: Pour ¼ cup of time-honored baking soda in the drain.
Step 4: Pour distilled white vinegar (about a half cup) into the drain or garbage disposal and let all that hot vinegar bubble for 10 minutes.
Step 5: Pour boiling water in the drain to remove remaining food particles or residue in the sink drain and let the garbage disposal run.  

Note: Put some deodorizing citrus rinds (like a few lemon peels) in sink drains with garbage disposal and run it with your tap water on. Alternatively, you could use lemon ice cubes or frozen lemon wedges. The garbage disposal won’t get damaged.

No citrus rinds? Baking soda should help deodorize. Pour another ¼ cup of baking soda and let the garbage disposal run as usual. You can also throw in a few ice cubes. The garbage disposal blades won’t get damaged.

Check Your P-Trap if It’s Clogged

The P-Trap is designed to keep the sewer smell out of your house. A clogged P-Trap will make your sink smell. Here’s one way you can check if your P-Trap is clogged.

how to install p trap
Image credit: Paul Ashe

Note: P-Trap is also called a U-Bend.

Step 1: Place a bucket under the P-Trap
Step 2: Loosen the two nuts holding the pipe by using your hand or a wrench
Step 3: Remove the pipe and let the water drip into the bucket
Step 4: Check inside the pipe for foreign objects (like food debris) that may clog it
Step 5: Remove any objects using a bendable brush or a snake brush
Step 6: Fasten the pipes back once hairball, food debris, and other objects have been cleaned
Step 7: Turn the water on for 15 seconds to check for leaks
Step 8: Throw the dirty water that you’ve collected into the bucket

Prevent Kitchen Sink Stinks

When you’re mindful of what you dump in your sink drain and garbage disposal, you might notice that your sink smells less. Being careful of what you let in your sink is the best way to prevent drain smells and leave your drain smelling fresh. Food debris can rot, and food particles can eventually turn rancid.

If the odor improves but the sink is not completely odorless, then you need to clean your pipe. You can use the above method or a drain cleaner to clean your pipes.

Here’s the natural drain cleaner and how to use it:

1. ¼ baking soda
2. ¼ white vinegar
3. Kettle of boiling hot water or very hot water (just hot tap water likely won’t work)

Follow the instructions above. This is a great solution and a great alternative to chemical drain liquid cleaners.  

Take note that you can also use commercial cleaners to remove the stink from your kitchen sink. There are powerful kitchen sink cleaners that can do the job, but they have a strong chemical smell. It may mask the stink but will give off another.

If you are going to buy a commercial cleaner, make sure to choose one that contains natural ingredients.

If the smell doesn’t come off from any of the methods you use, there might be some other sources of stinks that you have to look into. Broken pipes that emit sewage stink wouldn’t normally come off so you will need to secure the help of professionals in this case.

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