Your garbage disposal requires little maintenance. Manufacturers build disposals to handle all sorts of substances including the stuff you shouldn’t put down the sink. Newer models can spin and chew countless times without showing any signs of wear. So, the real question is how well you take care of your garbage disposal to avoid needless maintenance and repair costs.


Let’s explore some ways you can practice proper care and safety when using your garbage disposal.


Garbage disposal safety is a matter of common sense.


If the garbage disposal is running, then turn it off before feeding anything down the drain. Maintain a safe distance from the disposal while it is running. Keep your hands and face away from the drain.


Do not put any metal item in the disposal, as the shards could project out of the sink and fly into your face. Last, never use your fingers to pull an item out of the disposal. Instead, use pliers or tongs.


Although the garbage disposal is a heavy-duty appliance, cleaning it is a delicate matter. When you clean it:


●        Feed: Warm to cold water, cut up lemons, ice cubes, rock salt, vinegar, chemical-free dishwashing liquid

●        Do not feed: Hot water, bleach, drain clog opener


Ideally, you need to clean your garbage disposal every week. If you take care of the appliance, however, you shouldn’t need to clean it more than once every two to three weeks. Your nose should alert you if you need to clean your disposal.


Before you put an item into the garbage disposal think about the impact it has on both the disposal and the septic system. Some disposals can handle chicken bones, but chicken bones do not break down easily once they go down the drain.


Here’s the list of foods that are acceptable and unacceptable to feed down the disposal:


●        Feed: Cold water, liquids, citrus peels, meat scraps, fruit scraps, soft foods

●        Do Not Feed: Chicken bones, fibrous vegetables, coffee grinds, egg shells, fruit pits, grease, pasta, potato peels, seafood shells, nuts, medication

Turn Off the Disposal if It Does Not Spin

If the disposal is clogged, if it is run for a very long period, if it overheats, or if there is a malfunction, it will shut down automatically.


If the unit suddenly stops working and the motor is turned off, you may need to reset the garbage disposal by pushing the red overload protector button. If the overload protector has tripped, you will see that the red button has popped out about a quarter of an inch.


Here is how to reset the disposal:


1.      Push the red button until it clicks. If you do not hear a click or you push the button freely with no resistance, the disposal did not reset.

2.      Run cold water and turn the disposal back on.

3.      If you have to reset the button frequently, you may need to call a P&D plumbing technician to inspect or replace the appliance.

Garbage Disposal Repair and Replacement

If your garbage disposal stops working, then contact P&D Mechanical. We offer plumbing installation, repair, and replacement for all plumbing components in your home or business. We also provide plumbing remodeling services.


If you would like to know more about our products and services, then call us at 763-533-2218.

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