Imagine washing your clothes in the washer only to find that your washer now smells like sewer. Trust us when we say that it is something that you would not wish upon your worst enemy. A stinky washer not only ruins the laundry but can lead to a foul odour throughout the house. Therefore, instead of ignoring the problem, fix it promptly. As you are already here, it means that you are searching for the answer to why does my washing machine smell like sewage, right? Yes, we know it, and that is why we have already come up with detailed solutions.

Before discussing the solutions, let us talk about another thing first.

Why Does My Washer Smell Like Sewage?

Indeed, before laying out the solutions, you need to know the reasons why does my washer smell like sewer. There are several reasons, and all of them relate to one thing – poor maintenance. Yes, that is right. Just like any other machine, your washer requires maintenance too. Unfortunately, 99% of the people are unaware of it and keep using the washer.

Apart from the poor or complete lack of maintenance, another reason for the smell might be a faulty part. A washer consists of various parts. If one of them is malfunctioning, it will cause a pungent smell. For instance, it might give out a burning smell which people mistake for the smell of a dead animal or the sewer.

A clogged drain is another reason. A washer has many drains and hoses for letting in or out the water. If they are clogged, you will start noticing a foul smell. Lastly, many people prefer installing the washer themselves. There are a considerable number of cases where the sewer-like smell is because of the incorrect installation.

Well, it concludes our reasons for why does my washing machine smell like sewage. Let us focus on the solutions.

How to Fix Washing Machine that Smells Like Sewer?

There are several DIY things that you can do to fix a smelly washer.

1. Regular Maintenance

Consider this solution like a magic wand. Why? Because it can do wonders. Almost 10 times out of 10, the answer to why does my washer smell like sewage is regular maintenance. It will help you get rid of the foul smell right away. All you need to do is run the washer with hot water. Then add baking soda and vinegar to the load. Once the cycle ends, leave the door open. We can guarantee that the smell is no longer there.

2. Unclog the Drains

If the sewage smell does not go away, opt for this solution. We recommend wearing gloves for this. Check the drainpipes connected with the washer. Usually, the smell is because they are clogged. You will need to unclog them using a drain cleaner or drain snake.

3. Check the Parts

The washer contains many parts. It is best if you avoid opening the whole machine apart. Instead, just check if the wires and parts are in the right place. At times, they might come out of their place or are actually burnt to a crisp. Do not try to repair or replace them on your own. Leave it to the professionals.

4. Call a Professional

If you installed the washer yourself or the foul smell does not go away, call a professional. They will check if the installation is done correctly and carry out other diagnostics.


Q: Is there a way to prevent my washer from smelling like sewer in the future?

Yes, there are steps you can take to prevent the sewer smell. After each wash cycle, leave the washer door ajar to allow air circulation and prevent moisture buildup. Remove damp clothes instantly to prevent mold growth. Regularly clean the rubber gasket, drum, and detergent tray. Perform monthly maintenance washes using vinegar or baking soda to keep your washer smelling fresh.

Q: Can using too much detergent lead to the sewer smell in my washer?

Yes, using excessive detergent can contribute to the problem. Residue from too much detergent can accumulate in hidden parts of the washer, promoting bacterial growth and bad odors. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for detergent usage.

Q: I’ve tried cleaning, but the sewer smell remains. What else can I do?

If cleaning doesn’t solve the issue, consider checking the drain pipe and sewer connections for any blockages or ventilation problems. Improper drain setup can sometimes cause sewer smells to be drawn into the washer.

Wrap Up

It concludes our article and hope you’ve got cleared with your question that why does my washer smell like sewer. We recommend that before you call a professional, exhaust all your options. At times, simple things like regular maintenance can help fix the issue. If you do not opt for it yourself, be ready to pay hundreds of dollars.

Humza Ahmad Barlas
Humza Ahmad Barlas is a dynamic freelance writer and a passionate expert in home improvement, contributing valuable content to for over a year. Specializing in home decoration, cleaning tips, and renovation strategies, his articles offer practical and appealing solutions for homeowners looking to enhance their living spaces. With a strong foundation in digital media, Humza excels in creating engaging narratives and insightful content. His expertise in content strategy and digital marketing shines through in every piece, making him a trusted and authoritative voice for readers seeking reliable home improvement advice.