Sink drain odor? ? ?

We had a very old bathroom completely remodeled. Soon we began to notice a very disagreeable odor coming from the sink drain -- especially strong when the stopper was removed.
We never observed this in the old one.
My questions are:
1. Did the contractor do something wrong?
2. What can be done about it? (I haven't called the contractor yet.)
3. Is there any danger?
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Is there a goose neck under the sink? is there water in it?
A goose neck with water in it is what keeps the smell from the sewer system from coming back up into the bathroom.
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Can't tell. The drain pipe is covered by the pedestal.

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The pedestal should not completely cover it. Bend down, you should see the pipe exiting the pedestal through the wall, follow the pipe with your hand into the pedestal and see if there is a trap.
If the pipe does not exit the pededestal through the wall but goes straight down or down with an "S" shaped trap, this is wrong. Get your contractor to fix it or call your plumbing inspector to report it.

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Ray Jenkins wrote:

New sink and all new parts? With the stopper removed, look down the drain with a bright light to see if water in the trap is visible (assumes trap is directly under the drain).
Also, try running the water in the sink briefly (to refill the trap). If that stops the odor, the trap may be getting sucked dry, which does indicate a problem.
Does the sink drain ever gurgle when draining or when other fixtures (esp. toilet) are being used?
To answer your question, yes, it's a potential danger.
Jim
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Speedy, I can see a fairly high level of water in the drain. So that would indicate the problem is not lack of a gooseneck o that it's being sucked dry.
What else could it be?
Thanks, Ray

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Ray Jenkins wrote:

It could be mold/mildew growth in soap scum in the drain above the trap. Pour diluted bleach down the drain (and into the overflow opening). If that helps, you know what the problem is. I've found that some types of modern soaps seem to support lots of mold growth. Well water seems to encourage it more than city water.
Jim
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You might also want to keep any eye down the drain while you have someone run around the house flushing toilets and running anything that might use the drain. See if it's possible that air is being forced back up through the goose neck.

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Even without knowing the problem cause, I'd be dumping a tablespoon of bleach in quart of water down the smelly drain every day. I bet it fixes the problem.
Home Depot also sells bleach tablets that will last for a month or so....
PJ
On Fri, 12 Dec 2003 15:35:49 GMT, "Ray Jenkins"

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You'll get sewer odors without a properly working trap. No danger.
On Fri, 12 Dec 2003 14:30:02 GMT, "Ray Jenkins"

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">We had a very old bathroom completely remodeled. Soon we began tonotice a ">very disagreeable odor coming from the sink drain -- especiallystrong when ">the stopper was removed."> ">We never observed this in the old one."> ">My questions are:"> ">1. Did the contractor do something wrong?"> ">2. What can be done about it? (I haven't called the contractor yet.)"> ">3. Is there any danger?"> i had a problem like this years ago and it turned out to be leaves in the vent pipe up through the roof -
To Explain Oneself Is A Sign Of Weakness!
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Sounds like sewer gas. Funny that's the second complaint of this type in the last few days. You don't say where you live, but I wonder if the recent cold snap on the East Coast has anything to do with it. If the vent pipe freezes shut it can cause a back pressure.
It's not super dangerous but not really healthy either. You certainly need to deal with it.
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-snip-

Is 'house explodes when methane gas leaks from sink' an urban legend? [and if it is, we should tell the local fire department who evacuated an entire hosing development because it was built on a landfill & the methane started entering cellars]
Methane is probably the worst problem if the OP has his own septic system. If he is on city sewers, then all bets are off. What happens when his neighbor empties 5 gallons of gasoline into the sewer grate?
Jim
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