I was advised to use diluted bleach to clean my shower from time to time. A few minutes after doing so, a (musty?) smell comes from the bathroom. I believe its coming from the shower drain. The smell goes away after about a half hour.

This house is new to me, so I'm not certain what was poured down the drain in the past, but I worry about a possible chemistry experiment happening in the drain that I shouldn't be breathing in.

Should I stop the bleaching? Should I be cleaning out the drain?


2 Answers 2


open the little crate covering the drain. it's usually a small twist left and lift up. using a bottle brush or similar implement give the drain and the crate a good scrub, removing all the mess of caught hair. it's a bit mucky but should provide a cleaner smelling drain. not that it's ever going to smell like roses. bleach turns to gas a bit and will bring up the smells from the S bend. the water that stays in the S bend stops smells coming up from the rest of the pipe. i finally got my wife off bleach. it smells bad, isn't that good to breathe in and bleached lots of good clothes by accidents. we now use cream cleaner for shower cleaning, which cleans scum off much better.

  • Scrubbing the drain as we speak. Thanks for the advice.
    – dangowans
    Aug 6, 2012 at 14:46
  • I used a bottle brush to scrub, along with a little CLR to clean up the thick calcium around the drain. Smells fresher already. I sprayed some of the diluted bleach down the drain to see if the smell returned. It did not. Problem solved.
    – dangowans
    Aug 6, 2012 at 15:24
  • Thanks for the tip on reducing the use of bleach. I'll keep that in mind, and consider using a cream cleaner.
    – dangowans
    Aug 6, 2012 at 15:25

Same thing happened to me, gross smell. I looked it up and it could be Bleach reacting with urine. Not good for the lungs, so it's advised to used anything else to clean the bathroom.

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