Smell from Shower Drain (Uggh)

we have one shower in the house. (I had the cesspools checked and the cesspool guy said they're not the problem)
It doesn't smell until you start the shower then this acrid smell comes out of the drain that's pretty awful then it goes away after about a minute.
The cesspool company said maybe it's a venting problem. My plumber said it couldn't be something about the trap and how it's situated vis a vis the vent( I didn't understand)
the plumber suggested pouring bleach down the drain that there was some stuff in there. It didn't help! The trap and the piping under the shower is new PVC.
Any ideas. I think it is a venting problem but the plumber doesn't want to get his A## over here. and my guess is worth nothing when it comes to plumbing
Thanks for any help
Barry
--
Barry

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This is a question for www.plbg.com -B

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Barry Feldman wrote:

Remove the drain cover and look down with a bright light. Can you see the water in the trap? Yes? Then the trap is working and "trapping" sewer gases.
Flush the toilet while watching water in the trap. Does the water remain relatively still? Doesn't get sucked out? OK? Then it's not a venting issue.
Usually shower drain odors are caused by mold/mildew growth on soap scum which is located *above* the trap inlet. Hot water from showering releases noxious gases from the molds. The fix in this case is a thorough scrubbing (toothbrush) with a bleach solution to get rid of the scum. Just dumping bleach down the drain won't get rid of it.
Jim
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thanks - now I understand what the plumber was trying to explain about the trap.
I'm going to work I'll let you know how it works.
Barry Glen Head NY

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I had a similar problem a while back and was offered the same options for a cure. However in my case, it turned out to be water leaking into the floor around the drain and rotting the material underneath. Consider this if all else fails. I had to remove and replace the floor and re-tile.
KZ
wrote:

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KZ wrote:

Another possibility is that it's hydrogen sulfide. It may not actually be from the drain, but from the water itself. This has as characteristic "rotten egg" smell that could be described as acrid.
If the problem comes from the water heater, it will typically appear when the water is first turned on, and then go away after about a minute. It's caused when sulfates in the water react with hydrogen in the water, and the anode rod in the water heater can contribute to the problem. It can be more prevalent if you have a water softener. Logically, it would happen with all tap water, but since shower water has heat that forces the gas into the air in a relatively enclosed place surrounded by the moisture that holds it, it's often noticeable in the shower only.
The trap is still a sensible first place to look. If looking at the trap gets you nowhere, then figure out if this odor comes from hot water only or cold water too, if it's possible to do that in your shower. If you find that it happens only when hot water is running, then your water heater may need flushing, and the magnesium anode rod may need to be replaced with an aluminum one.
If this is the problem, be sure to read up on flushing water heaters before you actually do it.

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Does your shower have a sliding door or a door that swings outward?
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On Sun, 17 Oct 2004 13:45:54 +0000, Barry Feldman wrote:

Does shower drain have a trap? If not, install one. If it does, clean it out.
Clean the shower on a regular basis.
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<SNIP>
Next time if you get that "urge" while taking a shower, step out and use the toilet instead of the shower......
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