Garbage Disposal Repair - Replacement
Garbage Disposal Repair: Troubleshooting Guide and DIY Repairs
Garbage disposals are an essential part of any kitchen, but when they break down, they can cause a major inconvenience. From clogged drains to leaking pipes, a faulty garbage disposal can lead to a range of problems. Fortunately, many common issues can be resolved with a bit of troubleshooting and some simple DIY repairs. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about garbage disposal repair, including common issues, troubleshooting tips, and DIY repairs.
Common Garbage Disposal Issues
Before we get into troubleshooting and repairs, it’s important to understand the common issues that can arise with a garbage disposal. Here are some of the most common problems:
a. Clogged Disposal
A clogged garbage disposal can cause water to back up in your sink, making it difficult to use. This is often caused by food debris, grease, and other waste getting stuck in the disposal unit. If you notice that your sink is draining slowly or not at all, a clogged disposal could be the culprit.
b. Jammed Blades
Sometimes, garbage disposal blades can become jammed or stuck, preventing them from grinding up food waste. This can be caused by hard objects like bones or silverware getting caught in the blades, or by a buildup of food waste. If your disposal makes a humming sound when you turn it on, but the blades aren’t spinning, you may have a jammed unit.
c. Leaking Disposal
A leaking garbage disposal can cause damage to your kitchen cabinets and flooring, as well as create a potential safety hazard. Leaks can be caused by worn out gaskets or seals, loose connections, or cracks in the disposal unit.
d. No Power
If your garbage disposal won’t turn on at all, there could be an issue with the power supply. This could be caused by a tripped circuit breaker, a faulty switch, or a problem with the wiring.
If you’re experiencing any of the above issues with your garbage disposal, don’t panic. Here’s a step-by-step guide to troubleshooting the problem:
a. Step 1: Turn Off Power
Before you begin any troubleshooting or repair work, be sure to turn off the power supply to the disposal. This can be done by unplugging the unit or turning off the circuit breaker that controls it.
b. Step 2: Check for Clogs
If your disposal is clogged, you’ll need to remove the blockage to restore proper function. To do this, use a pair of tongs or pliers to remove any large objects or debris that may be blocking the blades. You can also use a plunger to try to clear the clog.
c. Step 3: Reset the Disposal
If your disposal won’t turn on at all, try resetting it. Most disposals have a reset button located on the
underside of the unit. Press the button and wait a few minutes before trying to turn on the disposal again.
d. Step 4: Check for Jammed Blades
If your disposal blades are jammed, you’ll need to manually turn them to free up any obstructions. To do this, insert an Allen wrench or hex key into the hole located on the bottom of the unit. Use the key to turn the blades back and forth until they start to move freely.
e. Step 5: Fix a Leaking Disposal
If your garbage disposal is leaking, the first step is to identify the source of the leak. This could be a loose connection, a cracked unit, or a worn out seal. Once you’ve identified the problem, you can replace any damaged parts or tighten connections as needed.
Many common garbage disposal issues can be fixed with a bit of DIY know-how. Here are some simple repairs you can do yourself:
a. Fixing a Clogged Disposal
To fix a clogged disposal, start by turning off the power supply and removing any large objects or debris that may be blocking the blades. You can then use a plunger or a drain snake to clear out any remaining clogs.
b. Unjamming Blades
If your blades are jammed, use an Allen wrench or hex key to manually turn the blades back and forth until they move freely. You can also try using pliers to remove any obstructions from the blades.
c. Replacing a Leaking Garbage Disposal
If your disposal is leaking, you may need to replace the unit. To do this, turn off the power supply and remove the old unit from under your sink. Install the new unit following the manufacturer’s instructions, and be sure to tighten all connections securely.
When to Call a Professional
While many garbage disposal issues can be resolved with DIY repairs, there are some situations where it’s best to call in a professional. If you’re unsure about the cause of the problem or don’t feel comfortable performing repairs yourself, it’s always best to seek the help of a licensed plumber.
A malfunctioning garbage disposal can be a frustrating problem, but with the right troubleshooting and repair techniques, you can get your unit back up and running in no time. By following the steps outlined in this article, you’ll be able to diagnose and fix common garbage disposal issues, ensuring that your kitchen stays clean and functional.
Q: How do I know if my garbage disposal needs to be replaced?
A: If your garbage disposal is over 10 years old or has a significant crack or leak, it may be time for a replacement.
Q: Can I put grease down my garbage disposal?
A: No, it’s best to avoid putting grease, fat, or oil down your garbage disposal, as it can cause clogs and damage to the unit.
Q: Can I use bleach to clean my garbage disposal?
A: While bleach can help clean your disposal, it’s important to dilute it with water and avoid using too much, as it can corrode the unit.
Q: Can I sharpen the blades on my garbage disposal?
A: No, attempting to sharpen the blades on your garbage disposal can be dangerous and should only be done by a licensed professional.
Q: How often should I clean my garbage disposal?
A: It’s a good idea to clean your garbage disposal once a week using a mixture of baking soda and vinegar, followed by hot water.
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Grinding ice cubes with your disposal will help keep the blades clean. You can also trying grinding pieces of lemon while running warm water, which will help keep down any foul odors in the system. Be careful not to over fill the disposal, which may lead to tough clogs.
Never put bones, cooking grease, or coffee grounds into the garburator
Never run the garbage disposal without water, this can burn-out the motor
Put a slice of lemon or a cup of vinegar down the garburator if the garburator starts to smell.
Avoid throwing anything and everything into it, as it will cause a jam. Always flush cold water through the system at the same time that you dispose of food items. If not, the ground-up food particles will become stuck in the pipes and might combine with any grease or fat to become a nasty clog – with the power off, you’ll then need to inspect and clean the garburator, or you may need to call in a professional to repair or replace the system.
* $75 service fee applies to any service within our normal service area.
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