Today, we are living in the modern world of light-speed schedules and convenience. Garbage disposals have become a time-saving, convenience. Though garbage disposals make disposing of foods a simple task, they often go overlooked or under appreciated. Nevertheless, when something goes wrong, we cannot fail to notice the foul smell coming from our garbage disposal units.
Garbage disposals first appeared in households in the 1930's and 1940's. These appliances, which are installed under a kitchen sink, can make a cook's life easier by trapping and shredding food waste items, allowing it to pass through the plumbing system. Although these popular appliances make cooking and cleaning much more convenient, they do require regular maintenance to keep them running at optimal performance. When it is time to replace your garbage disposal's blades, you can save time and money by doing it yourself.
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You should first find out whether only the disposal is broken, or if the power has gone out completely in the areas near your kitchen sink. Try resetting the circuit breaker that leads to the kitchen, or replacing a fuse if you have an older electrical box. If the garbage disposal makes no noises at all when you flip the switch, you might also want to check under the sink to see that it’s plugged in.

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Attach the pipes. You will attach a 90-degree disposal drainpipe to the disposal and the tailpiece to the other sink drain. There should be p-traps on both the disposal and the tailpiece from the other sink and they should be level to one another. Use straight pipes and a T-fitting to connect both drains into one line and route the drainpipes into the main drain.
Hot water, a good degreasing soap and a terrycloth rag. Try 409 degreaser and let it sit a few minutes, then run hot water on the cloth, add soap and rub the flange on top and underneath. There are commercial brushes available, but brushes don't always de-grease well. They are, however, very useful for cleaning crevices. Regular cleaning makes this job much easier.
Dispose orange peels, or any citrus rinds, to freshen the disposal and keep it smelling clean, but cut them into slices first as large pieces of citrus peel, e.g. half a lime, can jam a disposal. You can also use pieces of citrus fruit that may be too old to consume, as long as they're not too spoiled to smell nice. You can freeze these pieces first, if you wish.

A clogged garbage disposal unit can leak when you try to operate it without removing the clogging. What clogs up garbage disposals? Normally this would be expandable food like rice and pasta. Even large animal bones can also result in clogging and possible leak. Although coffee grounds help eliminate odors, allowing it to accumulate in the drain of the disposer will result in clogging and potential leak.
STEP 1 – Many garbage disposals (a.k.a electric pigs) have a reset button located at the bottom of the unit that behaves likes a breaker switch or the reset button found on some electrical outlets. You may have to feel around for it if you can’t see it. While the disposal is off, press this button and then try to activate the disposal. If this works, skip the remaining steps and get back to doing your dishes! You solved the problem!

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Attach the pipes. You will attach a 90-degree disposal drainpipe to the disposal and the tailpiece to the other sink drain. There should be p-traps on both the disposal and the tailpiece from the other sink and they should be level to one another. Use straight pipes and a T-fitting to connect both drains into one line and route the drainpipes into the main drain.
Proper use of a garbage disposal can stave off future leaks. So remember to grind only soft foods; hard items such as bones, apple cores, or raw potatoes can dislodge or damage the internal seals. Run cold water through the sink drain before and after food disposal to keep solid fats from congealing into gunk (which can deteriorate the sink flange and cause leaks). Finally, inspect your disposal for leaks—at least twice a year using the dyed-water test—to catch and repair minor leaks before they lead to water-damaged sink cabinets or kitchen floors.
Waste disposal units may jam, but can usually be cleared either by forcing the turntable round from above or by turning the motor using a hex-key wrench inserted into the motor shaft from below.[25] Especially hard objects accidentally or deliberately introduced, such as metal cutlery, can damage the waste disposal unit and become damaged themselves, although recent advances, such as swivel impellers, have been made to minimize such damage.[citation needed] More problematic are drain blockages caused by shredded waste that is fibrous, e.g., artichoke leaves, or starchy, e.g., potato peelings.

Should your disposal suddenly cease to work, check its overload protection. A red button on the bottom of the disposal trips when the disposal becomes jammed or overloaded to prevent damage and motor burnout. Unplug the disposal, push the button and remove the jam. Some high-end models can sense a jam and will automatically reverse the direction of the blades.


Located in Benton Harbor, Michigan, the American based Whirlpool Corporation is an international manufacturer and marketer of home appliances. Whirlpool markets many different brands, including KitchenAid, Maytag, Jenn-Air, and Amana. Their line of in sink disposers offer an affordable entry level option for homeowners who want to install a garbage disposal in their home.
Connect the connector pipe to the elbow and the adjacent sink. Use the connector pipe to connect the elbow piece to the T-fitting on the adjacent sink. The connector piece might need to be cut down to the correct length depending on your sink. Use the nuts and washers provided with your pipes to secure the pieces together using the tongue-and-groove pliers.[1]
Jump up ^ Specter, Michael (22 June 1992). "Only in New York: Garbage Disposers, Banned, Stir Debate". New York Times. Most major cities banned garbage disposers after World War II, driven by worries that ground food would clog sewer pipes beneath their booming neighborhoods. ... But a series of studies from universities and the not completely disinterested plumbing industry showed that the additional waste from ground food scraps would rarely harm a city sewage system.
Flange: The flange is the uppermost portion of the garbage disposal, where the disposal and the sink drain meet. The flange can develop a leak for a variety of reasons. Check that all the mounting bolts, typically there are three, are tight enough. Snug the bolts up with a wrench if you see water dripping from any of the bolts, being careful not to overtighten the bolts.A second reason the flange may leak is if the seal, made of “plumber’s putty,” has failed. You will need to loosen the retaining bolts until you can see a gap around the flange. Force enough new putty in the gap, between the flange and the drain pipe, to fill in all the space. Tighten the retaining bolts.

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InSinkErator garbage disposals provide a convenient and environmentally-conscious alternative to sending leftovers to landfills. Capable wastewater treatment plants can even recycle food scraps into energy and fertilizer. Plus, using garbage disposals can significantly reduce the amount of trash sent to landfills and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Disposers fasten to the sink drain fittings in a number of ways--some use threaded plastic nuts, others large hose clamps--but the mounting-ring assembly shown here is the most common. To remove the disposer, support it from below and rotate the large, 3-tab mounting ring at the top counterclockwise until the unit falls away. Remove the remainder of the drain assembly by loosening the three bolts and prying off the retaining ring. Push the drain out through the sink hole and clear away any old caulk or putty.
We're expecting a lot of garbage disposal (waste disposal unit and garburator) service calls next week. Thanksgiving and Christmas are behind us, but another major celebratory gathering will take place this weekend. Although not an official holiday, the Super Bowl is considered a great American secular holiday by most. While many advocate for the day off on Super Bowl Monday, this will never happen for plumbers!
Running the garbage disposal without water or accidentally dropping items, such as flat wear or jewelry, can cause the disposal to jam. Food items, such as corn husks and potato skins, can also cause your disposal to jam. When the disposal motor jams, it can overheat quickly and cause the red button to pop from the bottom of the disposal. This stops the flow of electricity to protect the motor. When the reset button doesn’t work, you need to free the grinding plate or wall to release the jam.
There are two main types of garbage disposers—continuous feed and batch feed. Continuous feed models are used by feeding in waste after being started and are more common. Batch feed units are used by placing waste inside the unit before being started. These types of units are started by placing a specially designed cover over the opening. Some covers manipulate a mechanical switch while others allow magnets in the cover to align with magnets in the unit. Small slits in the cover allow water to flow through. Batch feed models are considered safer, since the top of the disposal is covered during operation, preventing foreign objects from falling in.
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