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Thread: Burnt Electrical Smell

  1. #1

    Default Burnt Electrical Smell


    We occasionally have what my wife and I describe is a burnt electrical smell coming from a drain in the sink located in our utility/laundry room. The smell only seems to be coming from this one drain. Any ideas on what could be causing this type of smell.

    Thanks for your help

  2. #2
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    San Diego


    If this sink is not used often, the trap could dry out. If there are problems with the vent on the line, the trap could be siphoned dry.

    Otherwise, it could be "goop" in the drain above the trap.....old soap scum, hair, whatever ....tends to rot and smell. You could try some bleac or lysol into the sink.

  3. #3
    Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek Mikey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Central Florida

    Default Is the trap trapping?

    If everything is working right, all you should smell at any drain is whatever you last put in it. If things aren't vented properly, then all bets are off -- the trap might clear and you'd smell anything in your whole DWV system. If it's convenient, you might have a whiff at the vent stack(s) on the roof to see if you find a similar smell. The "burnt electrical" smell is very distinctive; it's very unusual to associate it with anything normally wet. OTOH, it's very pervasive, so it could be a nearby electrical appliance about to die, and you just think it's the drain. (Full disclosure -- I know a lot more about electricity than I do about plumbing.)


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