"Oily smell" coming from one hot water tap

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by MikeW888, Sep 14, 2008.

  1. MikeW888

    MikeW888 New Member

    Sep 9, 2008
    Okay now that I have hot water I've noticed that in one of the bathroom's the hot water coming out of the sink faucet has a faint "oily smell" to it (cold water is fine from all taps), sort of like there's WD-40 or something similar mixed in with the water. The shower in that room doesn't have that smell coming out of that faucet. The kitchen hot water doesn't smell either. In the other bathroom the hot water from the sink maybe has the smell (it's much fainter if it does) and the shower doesn't seem to have it.

    There was some remodeling done on the house before I moved it (like the new water heater in my previous post) and in that bathroom they at least put in a new tub/shower but I don't know if any of the plumbing in the walls/floor was actually changed.

    Is this smell something to worry about? Will it go away in time if I just continue to use it? Is it actually safe to use that water for like shaving while it still smells?
  2. Mikebarone

    Mikebarone DIY Senior Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    Phoenix, AZ

    I don’t know how much water you’ve ran through the faucets that have the oily smell, but if the plumbers did a lot of soldering on those lines, they may have used a lot of flux, and possibly the hot water is dissolving it, and that’s what you are smelling. The smell should go away in time if that’s what’s happening. And who know, that flux may make your face really soft…LOL.

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  4. MikeW888

    MikeW888 New Member

    Sep 9, 2008
    Thanks for the info.

    I hadn't really run much hot water through that faucet until recently so not a lot has run through that hot water pipe yet, I don't think. Given the size of that bathroom and the location of the fixtures and the new window that was installed I would guess that it was once a half-bath without a tub/shower and they added one and redid the plumbing before they sold it and I moved in. So yeah there's probably some new/modified pipes and stuff in the walls.
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