Having a garbage disposal in your home is beneficial in a few ways. When you have a garbage disposal attached to your sink, you can easily allow small crumbs of food to go down the drain without hesitation. It makes washing your dishes by hand much easier and can even help you break down certain larger food items as well.
Although your garbage disposal is a nice appliance to have, it won’t last forever if you don’t know how to properly maintain it. With the right garbage disposal maintenance, you can avoid costly repairs and stinky odors. Not sure where to even begin?
In this guide, you’ll find several garbage disposal tips to keep in mind. Continue reading below to find out more!
1. Run Enough Water
As you know, the garbage disposal helps to grind up certain food items and then sends them down to the disposal. When you’re using your disposal, you should always run the cold water. It’s also important to run enough cold water during this process.
Instead of turning the water on right before using the disposal and then turning the water off right after shutting the disposal off, you’ll want to run cold water for several minutes both before and after using the disposal. This helps to ensure all of the food particles have been thoroughly flushed down the drains.
2. Know What Not to Dispose
Many people believe they can send any food items they want down their garbage disposal. Others believe sending actual garbage down the disposal is also okay. Although it’s called a garbage disposal, you shouldn’t send actual garbage down it.
You shouldn’t even send all types of food down it either. Actual garbage items can clog the drain and certain food items won’t grind up well. Be sure to avoid sending any fibrous or hard food items down the disposal.
These items include hard seeds, bones, pasta corn husks, eggshells, and more. All of these items can cause damage to your disposal and jam the blades. Only place small food particles in the disposal that can be easily ground up with the blades.
Grease, oils, and fats, which can all solidify in the drains causing a clog, should also be avoided.
3. Break Up Large Items First
If you have a few larger food particles or scraps that you want to put down the disposal, then you first must ensure it’s something that can be ground up. Next, you’ll want to break up those large food items before sending them down the disposal. As you break the large food items up, only place one section in the disposal at a time.
Doing this will help your disposal out and prevent possible damages.
4. Run It Every Few Days
Do you only use your garbage disposal once every now and then? If you don’t use it often, then do try to remember to run it every few days to prevent the blades from rusting. Running it every few days will also help rinse away any leftover food particles that may have been stuck inside the disposal.
Remember to run cold water before, during, and after running the garbage disposal.
5. Power It Down Before Repairing
There might come a time when you need to make some repairs to your disposal. Before attempting to make any type of repairs, do remember to power it down first. The same is true before cleaning the unit.
To power it down, you can unplug the unit or you can switch off the power to the kitchen using the circuit breaker. This is simply a precaution to ensure you keep the risk of injuries at a low while working on the disposal unit.
6. Freshen It With Lemons
Over time, you might notice a stinky odor coming from the disposal. This can sometimes happen if the disposal isn’t cleaned properly. If you happen to notice a strange odor coming from the disposal, then you can freshen it up with lemons.
Take a few lemon peels and break them into smaller pieces to make it easier for the blades to grind up. Then run the water before adding a lemon peel one at a time into the disposal. The acid from the lemons will also help clean the garbage disposal.
7. Consult an Expert if Needed
If there’s something more serious going on with the garbage disposal, such as something that requires more than a simple fix, then you’ll want to consult with an expert. An expert can quickly determine what the problem is and then come up with the best solution. Whether it’s a repair to fix a problem or a garbage disposal installation to replace your current unit that’s needed, the experts can help.
Whenever you’re in doubt, it’s always a good idea to contact professionals.
8. Clean It on a Regular Basis
The garbage disposal will need cleaning on a regular basis. It’s common for grime to build upon the inside of the disposal. One great way to get the disposal clean is to use a mixture of baking soda and white vinegar.
There are a few natural ways to keep the disposal clean. It’s essential, however, that you avoid using harsh chemicals to clean your unit. Harsh chemicals can damage different parts of the unit.
If you’d rather use a cleaning product, then be sure to only use something that’s made specifically for garbage disposals.
Make Your Garbage Disposal Last With These Tips
Having a garbage disposal in your kitchen can make a few kitchen chores much easier. If you’re not properly maintaining the unit, however, you could be faced with more problems than benefits. Thankfully, you have this guide to lend you a helping hand.
Use all of the information listed above to make sure your garbage disposal unit lasts.
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