stink trap

Stink pipe

Stink Pipe is a colloquial name for a sewer vent pipe.

Joseph Bramah received a patent for the toilet float and valve flushing system in 1778. This principle is still used in today’s toilets.

Water closets (or toilets) became common quickly and were connected to cesspools by unventilated pipes. Not only did these water closets smell highly odorous, but they were also serious sources of bacteria and infection. Fumes left unattended were said to be deadly.

London had the most problems since it had the largest population (close to three million). Tenements were in deplorable condition. Plumbers' salaries were three times more than that of the average working man, due to the increased demand and the serious health risks involved with the job.

John Gallait patented a trap to provide a water seal for drains in 1782. The “stink trap” eliminated the smell in bathrooms. These were swiftly incorporated into water closets. These “stink traps” rerouted the odours and gases to one of two different vent pipe systems or stink pipes, still in use today.


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