We don’t know how to word this delicately, so we’ll just come out and say it: toilets stink.
Fortunately, it isn’t something we have to worry about thanks to clever design that stops nasty sewer smells from wafting up your toilet and back into your bathroom.
Unfortunately, certain plumbing problems may result in your toilet smelling awful… even if the toilet itself appears to be nice and clean!
Is the smell refusing to leave even after repeated cleans? Over the years, our Bayside plumbers have noticed that the following issues tend to be the most common causes…
The 6 most common causes of a smelly toilet
1) Problems with the cistern
The shower cubicle is clean. The toilet bowl is spotless. But no matter how much you clean, that unpleasant smell lingers.
Here’s a tip: you may want to lift the lid on your toilet cistern.
With most nasty toilet smells coming from the pipe or bowl, a lot of people overlook the cistern itself as the origin of those nasty odours.
If you’re having a hard time identifying the source of an odour, lift up the lid and give it a sniff. If the smell is stronger, you’ve found the culprit.
Luckily, cleaning it out is simple: just drain the tank and give it a scrub with a brush and a cleaning product.
2) “It’s a trap!” How problems with your trap can lead to unbearable smells
Notice how the pipes underneath your toilet bowl curve? Well, there’s a good reason for this: namely, the bend allows water to pool up, forming a physical barrier that stops sewer gases and odours from wafting into your bathroom.
Unfortunately, it isn’t uncommon for water levels in the trap to fall to a level where the water isn’t completely blocking the pipe anymore.
And that results in sewer smells slipping through and into your home.
A temporary fix is to fill up a cup of water to replenish the water in the trap.
If the issue persists however, you may have an issue where your toilet isn’t providing enough water with each flush – in this case, we recommend calling a plumber in Bayside.
3) Bacteria and other microorganisms
Hundreds and even thousands of bacteria and other microorganisms live in your toilet system.
Usually, there aren’t enough of them to cause a seriously bad smell – however, if the bacteria is allowed to reach critical mass… well, that’s a different story!
Left uncleaned and treated, these bad bacteria often multiply and cause horrible smells throughout your bathroom.
These are pretty easy to solve once you find the location of the bacteria.
Here’s a piece of advice: make sure you check underneath the rim as well, as bacteria can often escape your view in these hidden corners, building to the point where the smell is almost unbearable.
4) Vent pipe malfunction
One part of your plumbing system that doesn’t get a lot of love is your vent pipes.
These pipes run from your toilets to your ceiling, and serve a range of purposes – the one we’re going to focus on today however is its role in allowing nasty smells from your toilet to leave your home.
These pipes connect the drainage lines in your home to the outside, helping vent out smells and also bring oxygen into your plumbing system.
When these vent pipes fail however… well, the result is pretty self-explanatory!
On top of bathroom smells however, issues with these vent pipes can also affect other parts of your plumbing like aerobic sewage digestion (an equally important function that, unfortunately, needs to wait for another day).
In most homes, these vents exit via your roof – when you run into issues with these vents, you’ll need to call a Bayside plumber who’s also licensed to work on roofs.
5) Broken or loose toilet bolts
The base of your toilet is sealed using sealant. In addition to keeping your toilet firmly grounded, this also serves the purpose of protecting you from unwelcome smells.
These sealants are made of rubber and wax – unfortunately, they can also occasionally wear out, leading to unwelcome smells wafting out and into the rest of your home.
Lose and broken wax sealing rings in your toilet often need to be replaced, otherwise sewage gases may come out from the cracks and broken rings, bringing with them bad odours.
While you can patch it yourself using DIY plumbing solutions like duct tape and sealant available at your local hardware store, the best way to fix the problem for good (and ensure you don’t have to deal with a “relapse” afterwards) is to have a Bayside plumber take care of it for you.
Got a problem with a smelly toilet? Call our Bayside plumber now!
You may not think of a smelly toilet as a matter worth a Bayside plumber’s time – hopefully, you now realise that the causes of a smelly toilet can go beyond scrubbing it over and over with cleaning products.
In many cases, the only way to fix the problems we’ve talked about is with quality plumbing services from the Watermaster team.
Often, the issue isn’t something you can fix on your own. In other cases, the problem will keep on returning if you only use temporary, DIY solutions.
With more than 20 years of experience helping residents all over Bayside, our team of plumbers can free your home from unwelcome toilet smells, getting to the source of the problem (even if it’s something you can’t see by yourself).
You can also visit us for domestic plumbers in Melbourne: pop into our headquarters at 9/22 George St Sandringham, VIC 3191, if you prefer a more hands-on approach.