Six Tips to Keep Your Garbage Disposal Running Right

Your garbage disposal can be a kitchen MVP—but only if it’s working properly. A garbage disposal makes it easy to get rid of food scraps that come off in the sink, grinding them up so that they won’t clog your pipes. However, you still have to take care of your garbage disposal to keep it working right.

Here are six ways to keep your garbage disposal from clogging:

  • Use cold water: You might use hot water to get rid of traces of grease or fat clinging to your dishes, but hot water is actually bad for the garbage disposal. It can melt the food while the disposal tries to grind it, leaving food clinging to the sides of the garbage disposal. Use cold water when you run the disposal: It hardens the food, which makes it easier to grind up and send down the drain.
  • Run your disposal longer: You might not be running your disposal long enough. If you shut it off as soon as it sounds like the food has gone down the drain, you might be inadvertently encouraging clogs. Instead, run the water and the garbage disposal for about a minute afterwards. This ensures that all food bits are disposed of and that the water rinses any remaining debris down the drain.
  • Use the garbage disposal regularly: Use it or lose it—your garbage disposal needs regular use to ensure it doesn’t rust, corrode or freeze up from not running. Even if you’re not sending any food waste down the drain at the time, run the disposal (and cold water) every two to three days. This will help the moving parts stay moving, so it’s ready for the next time you need it.
  • Grind citrus fruit: Every so often, throw a piece of citrus into your garbage disposal. Lemons, limes and oranges will all help remove excess food waste from the disposal’s inner workings. It will also eliminate any smells from decaying, trapped food bits.
  • Cut food waste into smaller pieces: If you have particularly large pieces of food in your sink, cut or tear them up into smaller pieces—or throw them in the garbage. Large pieces of food waste can burn out the motor, clog the disposal or jam the blades, which will require expensive repairs.
  • Know what to avoid: Certain food items should not be put down the disposal. The starch in potato peels, pasta and rice can cause them to cling to the disposal and cause a jam. Fats, oils and grease can harden and clog the disposal. Bones, seeds and pits are too hard for the blades and motor to grind up, and egg shells can stick to the pipes. It’s best to avoid these altogether—unless you miss your plumber and want them to visit.

By following these tips, you’re less likely to have an issue with your garbage disposal. But if you find yourself in a pinch, call PlumbSmart Plumbing Heating and Air right away. We’ll be happy to keep your garbage disposal running right.

Top Four Signs You Need to Replace Your Garbage Disposal

A garbage disposal is a handy appliance to have in your kitchen, but only if it’s working properly. Like any household appliance, garbage disposals experience wear and tear over time. If your unit isn’t working its best, it may require replacement. When does your garbage disposal need to be replaced? Read on to find out what you need to know.

Equipment failure

When it comes to signs that indicate you need to replace your garbage disposal, the complete failure of the unit to turn on is the most obvious of them all. Make sure the power cord is firmly connected and that the reset button on the bottom of the unit is engaged. If the unit doesn’t respond and turn on, check your circuit breaker for a tripped circuit. In some cases, your unit may actually be on, but seem to not be working due to a clog. It’s best to call a professional plumber to see whether you’re facing true equipment failure or to handle the clog if there is one.

Smelly odors

When food waste and moisture combine, there’s bound to be some funky smells going on. Unfortunately for some, garbage disposals aren’t meant to deal with all types of food waste. Sticky and oily foods, grease, nuts, eggshells and stringy vegetables should never go down a garbage disposal. These foods, and many more, can stick to the sides of the disposal or get tangled in the blades.

Usually, running hot water and pouring degreasing soap down the drain can cut through minor clogs. Keep the blades in functioning order by sharpening them regularly. If food particles and clogs get to be too much, though, you may need to replace the appliance entirely.

Poor drainage

Waiting around for water and waste to run down the drain as you’re running your garbage disposal? Poor drainage is one of the tell-tale signs that indicates when your garbage disposal needs to be replaced or repaired. The drainage problems may be caused by a clog in the disposal itself or clogs further down the drain.

See if you can fix the problem by manually turning the blades and plunging the drain. Fill the sink with water and forcefully plunge over the drain. If the water drains, run hot water to further loosen up any clogs. When plunging is unsuccessful, reach out to your preferred plumber to get the drain unclogged or replace the unit if absolutely necessary.

Water leakage

Depending on the source of the problem, a garbage disposal can leak from several different areas. You could be dealing with a damaged flange or seal where the disposal connects to the drain. In this case, count yourself lucky, since these features are easily replaced. Leaks from the bottom are much more serious and are usually caused by damaged seals within the unit. In most cases, it’s more cost-effective to replace the unit rather than repair it.

If you’re currently experiencing any of the signs that indicate you need to replace your garbage disposal, it’s best to give your trusted plumber a call before you make any hasty decisions. The experts at PlumbSmart Plumbing Heating and Air can troubleshoot the unit and perform simple repairs or provide a full replacement, but only if necessary. Reach out to schedule an appointment!

Most Common Reasons Why Your Garbage Disposal Stopped Working

If your garbage disposal seems to have given up, the issue is probably due to one of several common problems. Fortunately, you may be able to handle the repairs yourself. Many garbage disposal repairs in Mesa, AZ are quite simple DIY fixes.

Use the following guide to garbage disposal fixes in Mesa, AZ to get your disposal up and running again. Of course, if you need assistance, don’t hesitate to contact your local professionals at PlumbSmart Plumbing Heating and Air:

Call for backup

At PlumbSmart Plumbing Heating and Air, we aim to level the playing field for consumers who are caught off guard by excessive service fees by providing the highest quality service, combined with the best warranty in the industry, at the lowest possible price. We make it our goal to exceed expectations in every job we do. For industry-leading garbage disposal repairs in Mesa, AZ, contact our team today. Reach out to us for more DIY tips or to schedule professional repairs!

Garbage Disposals: Repair or Replace?

Garbage disposals make life in the kitchen — from cooking to cleaning dishes — so much more pleasant. But a garbage disposal is a complicated piece of equipment that should only installed by an experienced professional.

If you are considering adding a garbage disposal to your kitchen or having a problem with your existing garbage disposal, call PlumbSmart. We can typically offer a free estimate over the phone to install a new or replacement garbage disposal.

What Is The Ideal Solution?

In a word: Price. We want to resolve your issues and set you up with a working garbage disposal at the lowest price. A service visit and repair of your existing garbage disposal (when a repair is even possible) will almost always cost as much or more than simply replacing the garbage disposal. Meanwhile, the blades inside a garbage disposal dull and other mechanisms wear out over time, so simply replacing the defective or ineffective unit with a new one will almost always be the ideal solution.

Sounds expensive. Are you sure this is a good idea?

Adding a garbage disposal to your kitchen or replacing a malfunctioning one is remarkably affordable, even with the best-in-class professional installation services we offer. Typically, our price for a new garbage disposal installation is about HALF what our competitors charge.

So, whether you’ve put off upgrading your kitchen by adding a garbage disposal or your existing garbage disposal simply isn’t getting the job done anymore, please give us a call. We will be happy to install a brand new garbage disposal in your home that will make your kitchen a much more pleasant (if occasionally much louder) place.

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment and we’ll get back to you. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!