Lift the sink flange from the top of the sink. Use a plastic putty knife to scrape off the old plumber’s putty around the top of the flange, then wipe off any putty residue with a damp rag. Grab a palmful of plumber’s putty from the container and roll it into an eighth-inch to quarter-inch-wide “rope” with a length roughly equal to the circumference of the flange. Wrap the rope of putty around the top of the flange like a collar, then insert the flange into the sink drain opening until snug. Re-install the mounting assembly and mounting ring (taking care to securely tighten the mounting bolts on the mounting assembly), then re-attach the garbage disposal, drain pipe, and dishwasher hose in the reverse order you detached them.
For any major issues with the garbage disposal, you should leave the job to a professional plumber only. Reaching your hand into the drain is dangerous, even if you believe the power is shut off. A plumber can help you evaluate the state of your disposal, and decide whether or not you need a new unit. Upgrading to a faster disposal unit with a higher horsepower can help to protect your pipes and make cleaning up after meals even easier.
As I have mentioned, garbage disposers for most people are just another kitchen appliance that we tend to take for granted, and this is one of the reasons I decided to bring this website to the internet. I have come across many customers over the years that only seem to notice this “gadget” when it goes wrong, and believe it or not, most of the time they go wrong is because they’re not cared for properly.
One of the screws on the side of my Badger 5 is rusty and seems to be the source of a very minor leak. If I leave a towel in place under the side of the unit, it will saturate after a week or two. Drain, dishwasher, and sink connections are bone dry. As well as the flange connect at sink. Can I let it be or is this a major disaster waiting to happen?
Assuming that you have already given the disposal the time it needs to run and clear the garbage, you probably have a congested drain line. We don’t recommend using chemical drain cleaners with a garbage disposal. You will very likely just damage the unit and end up with a sink full of toxic chemicals that you’ll eventually be forced to clean out manually. If the blockage doesn’t go down with the good ol’ baking soda and vinegar remedy, then calling a John Moore professional is your best bet. He or she will know exactly how to properly remove the bolts, disconnect the drain trap and remove the trap and the discharge drain pipe, check for clogs and any other obstructions, and finally clear the blockage with the latest and best tools. (See our previous post about good steps you can take when your kitchen sink is clogged!)
Replacing a failed garbage disposer can seem daunting. There's the usual trepidation about electricity and water, the unfamiliar sink connection and enough drain fittings to make leaks a real possibility. Then there are the hassles of comparison shopping and the suspicion that the job could run into real money. And finally, failed disposers don't often leak, at least not in the beginning, so it's easy to put things off.
If your garbage disposal is making a clicking or rattling sound, there may be some food particles that will not grind up inside. Remove power from disposer, reach into the sink hole with a pair of tongs and remove anything that is still down in the disposer. Test your disposer to be sure the noise is gone. If not continue troubleshooting your disposer issue (see below).
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We won’t sugar-coat it. This one is the doozy. If the leak is located at the bottom of the unit that means at least one internal seal has slipped, chipped, or flat-out deteriorated. The catch is, there are lots of these seals inside the disposal, and if one has failed it means the others are on their way. You can replace these seals with expensive, original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts – or you can just get a new garbage disposal.
Lowe's offers garbage disposals like the InSinkErator Evolution and Badger garbage disposals in various horsepower options. Models with lower horsepower tend to become jammed easily. What if your garbage disposal jams? No problem. Simply locate the hex socket in the center of the underside of the disposal. Grab a hex wrench, put it in the socket, and work it back and forth until you feel the blades loosen up. Once the blades are spinning freely, press the garbage disposal reset button. It's that easy.
In most cases if your garbage disposal is humming it is because a foreign object is stuck in the disposal. If an item has been jammed in the blades of the disposal they will be unable to rotate. This can result in a humming noise. If this is the case simply unplug the disposal under the sink then survey the drain hole. If you discover that an object is stuck in the blades remove it. Once you have done this you can plug the disposal back in and flip the switch. This should clear up the problem.
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.