Garbage Disposals: Common Issues, Installation & Repair

Your garbage disposal is a handy tool when it comes to food prep and meal cleanup. Unfortunately, when it isn’t working properly, your garbage disposal feels like your home’s worst enemy. Gross odors, backed-up sinks, and unpleasant noise are just a few things you can look forward to when your garbage disposal needs repairs.

There are a variety of reasons things can go wrong with your garbage disposal. For instance, like any other working appliance, your disposal can’t last forever. The average garbage disposal lasts around 8 -12 years, depending on how often it’s used and how well it’s treated. All too often, homeowners assume anything can be stuffed into the garbage disposal for easy removal. The truth is, some foods can cause damage to your garbage disposal or clog it up. Additionally, it’s fairly common for objects to slip into the garbage disposal unnoticed which can cause problems later on.

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Common Garbage Disposal Issues

While we can’t anticipate everything that could go wrong with your garbage disposal, there are some issues that homeowners face routinely. Whether the problem requires a simple repair or a full replacement, depends on the severity and cause of your specific issue. These are some of the most common complaints we receive about garbage disposals.

Water Pooling in the Sink

Clogged drains are inconvenient. They prevent you from using your sink and your garbage disposal. When water drains slowly or backs up into the sink, a clogged garbage disposal is likely the problem.

Unpleasant Odors

Food that isn’t properly disposed of can lead to hidden odors that make your kitchen a place you want to avoid. If your sink is draining slowly, you likely have a clog. Otherwise, bits of food may be remaining stuck inside your garbage disposal. Run cold water down your disposal during every use and routinely pour a mixture of baking soda and vinegar down your disposal to eliminate odors.

Foreign Objects Stuck in the Blades

Your sink is a busy place. Sometimes, this means unexpected objects can accidentally end up in your disposal. Silverware is the most common culprit, but sponges, plastic wrappers, and other foreign materials also can end up in the disposal.

Leaks in the System

As your garbage disposal ages, gaskets and seals dry out and crack. This leads to leaks in various places throughout the system. Leaks commonly occur where the disposal connects to the sink, the hose that leads from the dishwasher to the disposal, and the hose that connects to the drain system. These leaks typically occur under the sink. Garbage disposal leaks are usually quickly repaired with new fittings or seals.

Foods You Should Never Put in Your Garbage Disposal

Yes, your garbage disposal is designed for food breakdown and removal. However, some foods have textures that can lead to issues with your disposal’s motor or drain. Instead of testing your system, it’s best to dispose of certain foods in the trash can. Avoid putting these foods in your garbage disposal.

Do You Need to Repair or Replace Your Garbage Disposal?

While garbage disposals can often be repaired by a professional, they sometimes need to be replaced. There are a few warning signs that will help you understand the requirements you may be facing when your disposal stops working.

5 Signs Your Garbage Disposal Needs to Be Replaced

When your garbage disposal needs to be repaired or replaced, it’s important to call a professional plumber to take care of the problem. If you live in West Palm Beach, Florida or the surrounding area, and your garbage disposal isn’t working like it used to, get in touch with the experts at Red Rooter Plumbing today. We can assess your problem, and help you decide if repair or replacement is your best option.

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