Knowing the difference between what can go down the disposal and what should go into the trash can save you an emergency call to the plumber. This is especially pertinent during the holidays when the kitchen is filled with people and the sink with dirty dishes. Practice these three everyday maintenance tips to help you maximize the lifespan of your garbage disposal.
Installing a garbage disposal involves tapping into your home’s plumbing and electrical systems, and both systems need to be handled correctly to safely install your garbage disposal. Someone with a lot of experience can handle the job in 2 or 3 hours—or maybe even less. Attempting a garbage disposal installation without any training will likely take at least double the time required for a professional to install the garbage disposal.
Here are some problems that every garbage disposal can run into, old or new. Learning about your garbage disposal and how it works (and how it doesn’t work, of course!) is the first step to decide if it simply needs a repair or if it needs to be replaced all together. One thing that stands for any and all situations: never stick your hands down the drain!
Place the garbage disposal on a wide, clean work surface and locate the rubber gasket. The old gasket should be peeled off, and the new gasket should be mounted in the same spot. Take extra care to make sure that it sits flat and that it pops into the lip. Now you are ready to re-install your garbage disposal. Plug the cord back in reconnect each of the drains to make sure that there are no leaks.
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).