3 reasons your hot water smells like rotten eggs

Posted on January 27, 2022

If you’ve ever stepped into a steaming shower and thought you noticed the terrible smell of rotten eggs, you’re not imagining it. The scent you’re detecting is sulfur bacteria.

What’s causing the rotten egg smell

There are a few common reasons for the rotten egg smell. 

  1. There could be a bacteria buildup stemming from warm water left in the tank for too long.
  2. If you have well water, the odor could be a cause of untreated water inside your well. 
  3. Your water softener is breaking down the magnesium of the magnesium anode rod inside your water heater, creating sulfate gas within the heater. 

How to get rid of the rotten egg smell

There are a few common reasons for the rotten egg smell. 

  1. If you only detect the rotten egg smell when you’re running the water hot and cold, the cause is bacteria in your heater. Speak to a professional about whether it’s best to flush and disinfect your water tank or replace it entirely. 
  2. If the smell stems from your well system, there are ways to treat the water inside the well to eliminate the odor.
  3. If the breakdown of the magnesium in the magnesium anode rod inside your heater is the cause, a skilled professional can replace the anode rod with one made of zinc or aluminum, both of which react differently to bacteria as magnesium. 

Do you need help pinpointing the problem?

We can help. Contact Raider Rooter today. We’ve been helping South Florida maintain and manage its plumbing since 1978. So, let us put our expertise to work for you.

As always, whether you’re after tips and tricks for frequent plumbing problems or more extensive plumbing insight, be sure to consult our blog for thorough and helpful information.

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