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Old 01-21-2023, 01:43 PM   #1
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Kitchen sink smell and outside compartment

Hi,
Hoping someone might be able to offer some help. Last fall my husband and I purchased a 2008 33v adventurer. We did not notice it right away, but there is a horrible smell in the outside compartment to the left of the entry door. That smell seems to be carrying from the outdoor compartment into the under sink cabinet in the kitchen. Or, could the smell be originating from under the sink and showing up in the outside compartment? The two spaces seem to be sharing the stinky smell…. the same air space. I’ve washed both the outdoor compartment as well as the indoor cabinet multiple times but can’t get ride of the smell. Not sure what else we could try and wondering if anyone else has had this issue? We just removed the ‘cheater valve’ under the kitchen sink and sealed the opening with plastic. Don’t have results on that test yet… but again, was hoping for some other suggestions as well.
thanks so much for any help!
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Old 01-21-2023, 03:23 PM   #2
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Hi BernieJack,
I would recommend that you re-wipe down all surfaces in both compartments with a 10% bleach solution, being sure to wear gloves and have plenty of ventilation while you do so. I would also recommend that you put a ˝ a cup of Borax down the kitchen drain. Finally, after your compartments have dried-out from the bleaching, I would have nothing under the sink but sheets of paper towels, to help you detect any further leaks.
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Old 01-21-2023, 03:35 PM   #3
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There are plumbing drawings online that help to spot where lines run. This is for your RV:
https://www.winnebago.com/Files/File...g33v_plumb.pdf

Looking att ehm I might suggest two spots as more likely. One being pretty simple to fix, while the other is more difficult!
I suspect what you are calling a "cheater valve" is the gizmo to keep water going down the drain from sucking the trap dry??
If it sticks open, the fumes from the grey tank can come up throught that valve and if under a sink and inside a cabinet. it can make it smell really bad!
I'm not sure I would agree with taking it out as then there is a good chance the trap doesn't hold water and the fumes come up inside!
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But an old soggy leak can smell really bad as well, so some testing of whether it is just fumes or an old leak might help to sort it.
I use a bleach as a handy thing to trace odors.
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Old 01-24-2023, 06:27 PM   #4
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NosGuard odor eliminator works very well to eliminate all sorts of odors; after you find and eliminate the source.
Another odor eliminator is Odo-Ban odor eliminator, it was originally created for crime scene cleanup operations.
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Old 01-24-2023, 08:05 PM   #5
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I was not suggesting bleach as a way to clear the odor as much as an item to help "trace" the smell to where the odor might be leaking out of the plumbing. I find bleach is a pretty strong odor that I know when I smell it and it does come out pretty strong at leaks.
It is also one that is pretty quick and easy to clear once I want it gone!

That combo is something we can use at times if we think about where we are adding the bleach.
In this case, there seems to be several point where we might get a bad smell, so I would want to start cutting out a few of those suspect points. One of the first for me to clear as being easy is the Air admitance valve up under the sink.

If we look and thingk what it is designed to do, it should let air in as the water in the sinks goes down the drain. That keeps the suction /syphon from the water going down from sucking the water that is menat to stay in the trap to seal odors from coming back into the room.
If we add just enough bleach to smell good and strong but not go through to the tank, etc. we can smell around the valve and it should not let the odor out if it is sealing correctly!
If you pour half cup in the trap, we can expect to smell it in the sink but if we move down by the valve, it should be sealed and no large amount of odor smelled near it! But if that valve has degraded/failed and sticking open, you get a big whiff of bleach right away and that tells you to change the valve!

I like to sort out the easy questions first before going to the harder problems when looking for solutions.
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Old 01-26-2023, 11:18 PM   #6
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Morich said, "I like to sort out the easy questions first before going to the harder problems when looking for solutions."


I totally agree, it's called the KISS method.
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Old 01-27-2023, 09:46 AM   #7
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thanks Eagle5 for such a quick response. As you suggested I washed out both compartments with bleach and put 1/2 cup of borax down the kitchen drain. Unfortunately the smell has returned in both places so I will continue to troubleshoot further. appreciate your help!
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Old 01-27-2023, 10:19 AM   #8
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and thanks to both RayIN and Morich as well. Once I figure out where the odor is coming from its good to know some options to get rid of the existing smell. We did take the valve off the drain for a while, but sealed with plastic wrap. It could be my imagination but I thought it seemed a bit better. Never thought of using bleach to trace a leak, what an awesome idea. Will try it and let you know how we make out. Thanks again for your suggestions!
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Old 01-27-2023, 10:33 AM   #9
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If it seemed a bit better, that might be a clue that would drive me to change the valve or at least take it off and see that it is moving.
The valve is just a simple flap on those I've looked at and that flap can get messy and stick.
The idea of the flap is that as water fills the drain pipe and goes down it creates a suction behind it. That suction can make the water which is supposed to stay in the trap follow the rest down the drain. That leaves no water in the drain trap and odor comes up and into the RV. The flap needs to be easy to pull open as water goes down but firm enough to close when water is not moving. So a little bit of something like algae growing around the flap can make it stick.
Mine have often been screwed on and come off reasonably easy, so I might go straight to checking it as you seem to have "clues" that it might be leaking.
One way to clean it is to soak it in bleach as a way to kill algae and then shake it to listen for it moving.

Maybe a time when going straight to what "might" help could be easeir than the testing??

RV are designed to keep us busy! Good luck!
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