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In plumbing, a J or P shaped gas trap is located below or within a sink’s plumbing fixtures.

The J-shaped pipe is under the sink and is designed to trap sewer gases before entering the house. However, the P-trap is the most common trap and is most likely the type of trap in your kitchen sink.

The trap allows water to move through the sink to the trap and exits out the drainpipe. But because the drainpipe exits at a higher level than the curved portion of the pipe, some water is captured and held in the trap’s curve. This water provides a seal, blocking sewer gases from rising up through the sink drain. Every time you use the sink, the water in the trap is replaced. The trap is connected to the sink drain’s tailpiece and the drainpipe with threaded couplings. A large rubber washer beneath each coupling provides a watertight seal.

If your sink becomes clogged, the first place to look for blockage is in the gas trap. In some traps, the blockage is easy to remove and many have a cleanout plug at the beneath the trap so you do not have to remove the trap.

If you are unable to locate the source of the clog, contact a professional from Rescue Rooter to diagnose and repair your sink.