So I know next to nothing about buying a garbage disposal, for the past ten years I’ve lived in huge cities and haven’t had any room (or necessity for that matter) to purchase one. Having recently bought a house, all that has changed. From dishwasher to washer to dryer to garbage disposal, I’m having to educate myself about them and purchase them with informed decision making skills. Yikes.
Your old discharge tube probably won’t be the right length for your new disposal. If it’s too long, simply connect it to the disposal, mark it and cut it with a hacksaw for your garbage disposal installation. (Loosen the other pipe connections, if necessary, to insert the tube back into the tee.) If the old discharge tube is too short, you may have to make a time-wasting trip to the store. To avoid this, make sure the new garbage disposal installation kit includes a tube, or buy one separately at the same time for about $3.
Modern food waste disposers are often connected to your dishwasher’s drain pipe. This connection enables your dishwasher to rid itself of any leftover food scraps or residue that it might accumulate while washing your dishes. Where the dishwasher hose and the garbage disposal connect is a common source for leaks. The leaks most often occur when hose’s clamp is not secure enough. Leaks also develop when the dishwasher hose cracks. In order to fix this type of leak, you should either replace the cracked section of hose or tighten the clamp down.
If the disposal is plugged in and doesn’t need to be reset, then you should check the circuit breaker. The breaker could be flipped, which would mean your disposal isn’t getting power. If that’s still not the problem, then either the outlet is dead, the circuit breaker is malfunctioning, or the disposal needs to be replaced. Check the outlet first by plugging something else into it. If the outlet works, try replacing the circuit breaker switch. If that isn’t it either, you have to replace the disposal.
But there is really only one rule you need to follow: Never put your hand or fingers down into the disposal, even if you think the disposal has been unplugged or its circuit has been shut off. If a disposal gets turned on accidentally while your fingers are in the opening, the likelihood is that you will end up with bruised fingers, not bloody amputation. But this is not a risk that is necessary in any way.
Flush with water. Simply flushing out the garbage disposal with water will help to remove any loose dirt or grime. Stopper the garbage disposal, add a squirt of dish soap and run the hot water until there is 2 to 4 inches (5.1 to 10.2 cm) sitting in the sink. Pull out the plug and turn on the garbage disposal, allowing the water to flush through.
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.
The size of the motor in the garbage disposal directly correlates to the units grinding ability. Garbage disposals typically have between 1/3-1 horsepower motors. Choose the correct horsepower based on the waste that you need to remove. 1/3 horsepower units will help tackle tasks like grinding vegetables easily, but more power is recommended if disposing a large quantity of food waste such as, vegetables and harder to grind meats.
"Thank you for creating a product that will help reduce the need to call a plumber every 2-3 weeks. I have tried various options to get my staff to take better care of what goes down the 3 compartment sink drain but it did not work. The Drain Strainer makes it extremely simple for them. The first two XL's that I ordered have worked perfectly. These additional two I ordered are for a different location and we expect the same results there." Jim Abanto - Owner El Chalan Restaurant - Miami FL
Trim the discharge tube as needed. If you’ve upgraded to a larger disposal or one of a different model, there’s a good chance that the discharge tube won’t be the right length to connect to the ground plumbing valve. Fortunately, this is a simple fix—mark the spot on the tube where it should line up with the drain pipe, then cut it to size with a hacksaw. It should be a perfect fit.
Plug the disposal and fill up the sink with hot water and detergent. Unplug and run the disposal. The spinning disk forces the water down the drain like a pump. This should clear the disposal and the drain line. If not, you'll need to inspect the plumbing. Old pipes made of iron clog easily due to internal corrosion and should be replaced with copper.
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).