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Smelly water in my butt!

One of my water butts has stinking water in it. I drained it and let it refill, but have the same problem. Any ideas? 


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,541
    hi and welcome to Forum.
    When you emptied it out, did you wash it clean or just let it fill back up? 
    Normally they don't smell if they have a tight fitting lid on them.
  • It's lid is very tight. I didn't wash it out- wasn't quite sure how to achieve that, as it's on a stand and attached to a down pipe..... 
  • barry islandbarry island Posts: 1,744
    Mine has a lid which is not particularly tight fitting and I haven't noticed it being smelly, I dare say that if I emptied it there might be a bit of smelly crud right down at the bottom.
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,541
    when it was emptied, did you look inside to see if there was , as @barry island puts it, "smelly crud right down at the bottom"? 
    If you can detach it and use a pressure washer inside or just see if you can use a stiff brush on the inside, or a mop with a little detergent? 
    Might there be some " smelly crud" in the diverter or the gutters/ down pipe? 
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,897
    I wash my 4 butts out twice a year.
    There's a layer of 'mud' at the bottom in which I've found tubiflex and bloodworms and a lot of other bugs I don't know.
    The water is full of life, which comes to an end and then rots down which gives it that unique aroma :)
    I just use a spray attachment on a hose and it's soon gone and smelling fresh again

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • Thanks - I think I will have to put a bit more effort into it! Power hose is not an option as lecky is too far away. Will give them a scrub with a watering can - hose won't reach either. Funny that some smell and some don't!! I guess that's life!  :D
  • B3B3 Posts: 26,432
    Maybe something drowned in it
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • barry islandbarry island Posts: 1,744
    When working on a farm we found a hedgehog in a water trough it didn't smell until we fished it out and then it was indescribable.
  • wild edgeswild edges Posts: 9,894
    Birds leave all kinds of interesting things in your gutters to be washed down and into your water butt. If your diverter doesn't have a filter then it might be a good idea if cleaning the butts out is problematic. In my opinion all water butts should be fitted with a drain plug at the very bottom to allow cleaning without moving them but none seem to be.

    Another way to do without removing the whole thing it is to tape a length of hose to a garden cane and syphon the debris out of the bottom. It works as long as there are no big lumps like hedghogs :#
    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
  • After cleaning an occasional dose of Citrox helps keep water "sweet" with no ill effects on your plants.
    AB Still learning

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