Our testers found that differentiating features you'll typically see at the store may not deliver the durability they imply. We also found that some models with fewer features and a shorter warranty cost more than relatively similar competitors. Home garbage disposers typically last about 10 to 12 years, according to InSinkErator, though not all reach the decade mark. A longer warranty does not guarantee longer life and can also make some models cost more than otherwise-similar machines. Here are the garbage disposer features to consider:
I'm not what you'd call a handyman, although I've been working to get better at that. I will now at least try a home project before passing on it. So, when our 15-year garbage disposal died I had another opportunity. I determined our old unit to be a Badger 5 1/2 HP (this exact item). I didn't have time to wait for the item to arrive from Amazon so I went to Home Depot and coughed up an extra $20 for the Badger 500 - Home Depot's branded version of this item. They are identical except for the name & sticker.
The premise behind the proper use of a disposer is to effectively regard food scraps as liquid (averaging 70% water, like human waste), and use existing infrastructure (underground sewers and wastewater treatment plants) for its management. Modern wastewater plants are effective at processing organic solids into fertilizer products (known as biosolids), with advanced facilities also capturing methane for energy production.
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Our Minneapolis – St. Paul plumbers assist customers with garbage disposal installation by helping them choose between a continuous feed garbage disposal or a batch feed utility. Our plumbers will discuss the best options for your home and lifestyle. Some of the benefits of our garbage disposals include anti-jamming technology, plastic or metal blades, connectors to the dishwasher, system quietness, and more.
To reseal the leaky flange, you must first detach the garbage disposal. Start by loosening the screws securing the main drain pipe to the disposal, then loosen the screws in the metal clamp securing the dishwasher hose to the disposal and detach the drain pipe and dishwasher hose from the disposal. Loosen the screws in the mounting ring that connects the disposal to the metal mounting assembly beneath the sink, then pull down the disposal and carefully set it on a clean, dry surface. Loosen the bolts in the mounting assembly with a wrench, then pull down the mounting assembly and set it near the disposal.
If the disposal’s still leaking, loosen the mounting bolts and push the sink flange up until it’s slightly higher than the surface of the sink. Apply fresh plumber’s putty to the threshold between the flange and the sink. When you’ve applied enough, re-attach the unit by putting the bolts back and tightening. Wipe away excess putty that squeezed out. Finish re-installing by replacing the disposal unit on the mount. Turn the disposal back on and look for leaks.
Remove all wet wipes, tissues, sanitary napkins, paper towels, and anything else in your bathroom that you wouldn't want someone to flush down the toilet. Despite the marketing claims that wet wipes are flushable, they are known for causing clogs and other plumbing problems. If someone needs these materials, they will ask, which will give you a great opportunity to explain what can and cannot be flushed down the toilet.
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.
The bulk of a food waste disposer system, which includes the seals and pipes, is located beneath the kitchen sink. Most homeowners use this space to store various items, and it is not uncommon for people to bump or jar the disposal’s pipes when reaching for an item that is in close proximity. If the pipes are struck hard enough, the pipes can shift so that they are no longer sitting properly. Retaining bolts can become loose. Pipes may move, and seals can shift into an awkward position.
If the water is leaking at the mounting assembly, make sure it is mounted as designed and not cocked. If the water is leaking at the dishwasher inlet, tighten the hose connector. If the water is leaking through the wall of the container body, your disposer probably need to be replaced. If the water is leaking from adjacent plumbing, tighten the connections as necessary.
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Last, but not least, as your garbage disposal system begins to age, it grows susceptible to cracking along its interior lining. When this shell develops cracks, water will begin to appear at its seams. At times, the leak can be observed from the bottom of the unit, particularly from the reset button. If this is the cause of your garbage disposal’s leaks, then there is no method of repairing other than replacing the whole unit.
Update: As an aside, I also learned from my research that the best way to clean my disposal is to use citric acid. Having previously had no idea what citric acid was used for, I decided to order some from Amazon, going with the brand my sister uses: Citric Acid Powder - Ultra Fine Pure Powdered Crystals - Natural Preservative Food Grade Quality (16 oz) and gave it a whirl after 3 months of using my disposal. I let the citric acid sit with some water in the disposal for about ten minutes, and then I let it run for a solid 2 minutes. I repeated the procedure a few times and after about 30 minutes—wow, all the leftover gunk and food was flushed out of the disposal, leaving it clean with a very mild citrus scent. I feel like I’m becoming a real DIY at home kind of guy.
The metal sink flange that sits directly inside the sink drain is typically sealed around the top with plumber’s putty (a clay-like sealant) and then secured from under the sink with bolts. If the plumber’s putty deteriorates, or the bolts loosen, the flange can no longer form a watertight seal between the sink drain and the disposal—which could cause a leak at the top of the unit.
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).
Garbage Disposal Replacement