Your garbage disposal is like any other household appliance: it may malfunction and require fixing from time to time. It’s smart to know the most common problems your garbage disposal may encounter, so they can get fixed before it starts failing.
Here are the common garbage disposal problems and solutions:
Problem # 1: The garbage disposal won’t drain.
Clogs within the garbage disposal or the drain piping of the sink are a common issue. Fats and oils can create clogs, as well as objects that have been accidentally dropped into the garbage disposal. The drain pipe can also get backed up when you’re not using enough hot water.
If your garbage disposal isn’t properly draining, or if there’s standing water remaining in the sink even after the garbage disposal has been cleared, you may use a plunger to unclog the unit.
Another way to unclog the drain is by removing the P-trap to get rid of clogs and obstructions. If the clog isn’t in the trap, check the trap arm, and snake the branch drain if necessary.
Consider sharpening the grinder blades of the disposal, too, so they chop food more effectively. This can help prevent future clogs.
Problem # 2: The garbage disposal is jammed.
If your garbage disposal hums but won’t work, you’re probably dealing with a jammed flywheel, which often happens when you’re sending too much food waste down the disposal. Some garbage disposals come with a wrench you may use to dislodge objects that are blocking the flywheel, so it starts to turn again. Press the reset button on the unit, then run some cold water.
Problem # 3: The garbage disposal won’t turn on.
If your garbage disposal won’t turn on, it can be due to a broken motor or any issues with the electrical source. Food and other items that are stuck in the drain may also keep it from functioning properly.
To fix the issue, start by making sure the power cord to the unit is plugged in. Check for any blown fuses.
Problem # 4: The garbage disposal is leaking.
Your garbage disposal may be leaking for many reasons:
– A leaking reset button
– Cracked or loose hoses connecting to the dishwasher
– Loose or damaged discharge pipe, split or cracked body, loose seals and pipes, loose drain lines, leaky sink flange, worn out gaskets
If the source of leak isn’t immediately obvious, pour cups of dyed water down the sink drain.
Reseal and tighten the flange if the leak is at the top of your garbage disposal. Tightening drain line connections and replacing worn gaskets will often fix leaks originating from the side of the unit.
However, you may need to replace the garbage disposal if the reset button is leaking.
Garbage disposal problems? Contact a local plumber!
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