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Garbage Disposal Guide for Homeowners
September 12,2023

Garbage Disposal Guide for Homeowners

A garbage disposal can be a real lifesaver when it comes to getting rid of food waste. However, many homeowners fail to properly care for this appliance, leading to expensive repairs down the road. Mr. Rooter Plumbing provides you with tips on how to use and care for your garbage disposal.

What Can I Put Down My Garbage Disposal?

  • Small bones
  • Cooked meat scraps
  • Vegetable and fruit scraps—however, fibrous or stringy vegetables and fruits should not be put into garbage disposal
  • Citrus rinds
  • Small bits of ice cubes
  • Dish soap
  • Small amounts of leftover food

Things You Should Never Put Down Your Garbage Disposal

  • Coffee grounds
  • Potato peels
  • Eggshells
  • Large chunk bones
  • Fibrous vegetables
  • Starchy foods
  • Harsh cleaning products
  • Produce stickers
  • Onion skins and eggs
  • Grease and fats
  • Nuts
  • Chicken skin
  • Pits and seeds
  • Shells, such as crabs, oysters, lobster, and shrimp
  • Non-food items

These items are a threat to your garbage disposal in various ways. For instance, eggshells can cause mild to severe clogs in your drain pipes, while shells are hard enough to do serious damage to your garbage disposal.

How to Maintain Your Garbage Disposal

Maintaining your garbage disposal is quite simple. After using the disposal, continue running cold water for about 15 seconds. This helps flush away any remaining food particles and oils.

Another way to keep your garbage disposal in tip-top condition is to use the appliance regularly. Even if you don't have food scraps to dispose of, it's a good practice to run your garbage disposal periodically. This prevents it from rusting or seizing up due to inactivity.

It’s also advisable to address minor issues before they escalate into major problems. If you notice unusual noises, odors, leaks, or reduced performance, it's a good idea to schedule professional maintenance with a professional plumbing service. Here at Mr. Rooter Plumbing, we specialize in garbage disposal installation, garbage disposal repair, and replacement. If your garbage disposal is acting up and you’re looking for a professional plumber to perform an inspection, reach out to Mr. Rooter Plumbing.

How to Clean your Garbage Disposal

Are there unpleasant or lingering odors emanating from your sink, even after running water? This is a sign that your garbage disposal is in need of a good cleaning. Here are steps for cleaning your garbage disposal effectively:

Step 1: Turn off the garbage disposal and remove any visible debris that may be lodged in the disposal.

Step 2: Drop a few ice cubes into the disposal. Turn on the cold water and run the disposal for about 30 seconds.

Step 3: Sprinkle about a half-cup of baking soda into the disposal, followed by a cup of vinegar. This will create a fizzy reaction that helps eliminate odors and loosen debris. Let it sit for a few minutes.

Step 4: After the baking soda and vinegar treatment, run hot water for a minute or two to rinse away the loosened residue and odors.

Step 5: For a fresh scent, grind citrus peels such as lemon or orange in the disposal. This not only leaves a pleasant aroma but also helps clean and sanitize.

Step 6: Squirt a few drops of dish soap into the disposal while it's running with cold water. Thereafter, run cold water for another minute to rinse the appliance.

If you’re in need of professional garbage disposal services, reach out to Mr. Rooter Plumbing. From garbage disposal installation to garbage disposal repair and routine maintenance, we’ve got you covered.