How to Fix a Garbage Disposal — without a plumber.

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Before you begin to learn how to fix a garbage disposal, be sure you take the proper safety precautions. Anytime you’re working with a garbage disposal unit, turn off the device, unplug it, and drain any water that may be in the sink before you begin.

Garbage Disposal Troubleshooting Guide

Garbage disposals are simple machines that provide an extremely valuable service and usually operate for many years without a hitch. However, this does not mean that they will eventually breakdown or cease to operate. The good news is that normally getting it into working order is relatively simple. By addressing issues immediately, you can help maintain proper upkeep and possibly prevent the need for repairs or replacement.


How do you unclog a garbage disposal?

Unclogging garbage disposals is a simple and straight-forward task that anyone can do. There are various methods, but the most widely-used and effective method is using baking soda & vinegar. Learn how this simple method is often the quickest solution below.

How do you prevent garbage disposal odors?

The main cause of garbage disposal odors is minor food waste that’s been leftover and caught in little nooks and crannies. The easiest way to eliminate those odors is with citrus peels, learn how below.

What should I avoid putting in my garbage disposal?

Whenever possible avoid putting cooking oils, grease, paper or plastic materials, high fibrous or stringy foods like tough vegetables or fruits, animal bones, fats, egg shells, and rice or pasta (due to expansion).

How to fix a garbage disposal that won’t turn on?

If the garbage disposal shows no activity at all, the failure might be a simple electrical problem. Learn how to check below.

Need garbage disposal help in Dallas? Feel like you’re in over your head learning how to fix a garbage disposal? The experts at Porpoise Plumbing offer same-day service and a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. Contact us today to schedule a service call.

How to Fix a Garbage Disposal DIY Solutions

Garbage disposals are a useful kitchen appliance many take for granted. They allow us to dispose of minor food waste and dispose of dirty dishwasher water. This convenient place of disposal is of course an easy source of inconvenience if regular care and maintenance are not performed occasionally. Here are some common DIY solutions to garbage disposal issues.

How to Unclog a Garbage Disposal

The Baking Soda & Vinegar Method

Mold growth within the inner workings of the disposal is the most likely cause of disposal odor. Large food particles can get caught in the grater and possibly cause drains too clog. One can imagine that the damp dark area within the disposal is a mold growing paradise. A few tips on maintaining and cleaning this useful appliance can help keep smelly odors from being the main talk of your kitchen.

To break apart food debris, kill bacteria and help unclog drains this household method could help. Just pour half a cup of white vinegar and half a cup of baking soda into the sink drain and allow the fizzing to work its magic for about fifteen minutes. Then for 60 seconds rinse the solution out of the garage disposal with hot running water. 

How to Prevent Garbage Disposal Odors

Citrus Solution

One way to mask smelly odors is by utilizing citrus peels like lemons, limes, and oranges by putting them down into the disposal. This method, of course, is not going to do much for cleaning but when used in combination with the vinegar and baking soda maintenance it can help with freshening up the disposal.

How to Check Garbage Disposal Electrical Problems

If the disposal will not turn on when you flip the switch and you do not hear the humming sound of the motor, it indicates there is an electrical problem that is preventing the appliance from getting current.

How to Check Garbage Disposal Electrical Problems
Typical place where the garbage disposal reset button is located.
  • Look under the sink and check that the garbage disposal is plugged in.
  • Press the red reset button on the bottom of the unit then try to switch on the unit.
  • Check your main electrical panel to see if the circuit break to which the device is connected has tripped.

If none of these solve the problem, the unit itself may need to be replaced.

Get professional garbage disposal help.

If attention and action for the disposal goes beyond the above described tips then it is time to call a licensed plumber to address the issue. To safely deep clean and repair the unit and the associated plumbing a professional should always be used. A Porpoise Plumbing technician is more than qualified to properly address any issues your disposal or drains may be having. Leave it to us to get everything back in working order.

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