Plumbing in Arlington
Care of a Garbage Disposal
The garbage disposal is one of the most often neglected and abused appliances in a home. Proper care and maintenance can prevent break down, blocks and clogged drains.
Listed in the following are good garbage disposal practices (do’s) and the most often abused (don’ts).
Garbage Disposal Do’s
- Keep your garbage disposal clean. Some experts recommend pouring a little dish washing liquid inside the disposal and turning some cold water on and allow it to run for a minute. Others recommend cleaning by flushing with HOT soapy water through it. Cold water will allow the grease to be chopped up and flushed down away from the disposal. Hot water would melt any residue grease but perhaps clean better and prevent odors. The best advice is to refer to the instructions for your garbage disposal.
- Lemon, lime or orange peels will provide some scrubbing action and provide a wonderful clean scent. This is a great solution for smelly disposals. An alternative is to freeze vinegar in ice cube trays and drop the cubes into the disposal and turn on. The vinegar both cleans the disposal and eliminates odor-causing bacteria. For persistent odors pour baking soda down the drain and let it sit for several hours. Then run water and the disposal to flush. Borax is also effective for tough odors, just let it sit for an hour and flush with hot water.
- Ice will not dull the blades, it will sharpen them, clean them and break up grease build up, allowing it to be flushed down the drain. Just toss in a few ice cubes and turn it on. Provide this method of ice clean once or twice per month to keep your garbage disposal clean.
- Use a good flow of COLD water to grind food waste. Turn the water on and allow it to run for 15 seconds before feeding waste into the disposal. When grinding is complete and all food has been flushed down the drain turn the disposal off and allow cold water to continue running for 30 seconds, then turn the water off.
- Cut large waste into smaller pieces and put in the grinder one piece at a time rather than trying to shove it all in at once.
Garbage Disposal Don’ts
- Don’t grind glass, plastic, paper or metal.
- Don’t grind anything combustible.
- Don’t pour fat, oil or grease into the garbage disposal or drain. These substances will accumulate negatively affecting the disposals performance as well as clog drains.
- Don’t grind “stringy”, fibrous material such as artichokes, banana peels, celery stalks, corn husks, onion skins. The fibers can wrap around the blades causing the motor to jam or drains to clog.
- Don’t grind large bones or fruit pits as this can dull or damage the blades and jam the motor.
- Don’t put pasta or rice into your disposal where they can expand and jam the disposal and drain pipes.
- Don’t put coffee grounds into the disposal as they can accumulate in the drain over time.
- Don’t use bleach, drain cleaners or harsh chemicals, they can damage and corrode blades as well as drain pipes.
Garbage Disposal Troubleshooting
If you turn the disposal on and only hear a hum your disposal may be jammed. Unplug the disposal or turn the power off at the electrical box. Shine a flashlight down into the disposal and look for what is preventing the blades from turning. If you can see it, pull it out with pliers. If nothing can be seen, insert a wooden spoon into the disposal and manually turn the blades. A hex wrench can be inserted into the hole underneath the unit and manually turn the shaft and flywheel. Once the flywheel moves freely, turn the power to the disposal back on.
Push the reset button if the disposal has one. They are generally red or black.
If no object is seen in the disposal press the reset button, this is a frequent fix.
Check to ensure the unit is plugged in and the circuit breaker in the electrical box is in the “on” position.
Removing an Object and Disposal Safety
NEVER put your hand into the garbage disposal, use the handle of a wooden spoon, pliers (needle nose pliers are provide a narrow surface to insert and remove obstructions), or small tongs to remove objects. Always turn off the power before inserting any object into the garbage disposal.
Call Benjamin Franklin Plumbing Fort Worth
If these troubleshooting solutions fail to correct the problem with your garbage disposal give us a call. Our professional plumbers will be happy to assist you. When you need assistance for problems with plumbing in Arlington or the Fort Worth region, give us a call, we are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your convenience.
Our experienced and dedicated plumbers provide a full line of plumbing installations, repair, including water line repair in Fort Worth and Arlington regions, gas line repair in Arlington and the Fort Worth regions, and all other plumbing problems, services and maintenance. Our work is backed by a 100% guarantee.