Any Ann Arbor homeowner with a kitchen garbage disposal knows what a handy appliance it is when it comes to leftover food and disposing of it. With garbage disposals, you can simply disintegrate foods rather than placing them in the trash, which can result in odors and a mess. However, if not properly operated and maintained, your garbage disposal could malfunction or even cease to work. Not only that, a breakdown could result in costly plumbing repairs, clogged drains, and more.
The fact is, garbage disposals are a wonderful invention – but when a drain becomes blocked or the disposal won’t work properly, the cost for plumbing repairs can be more than you expect. Thankfully, taking proper care of your garbage disposal is very easy, and most issues you face with this appliance are unnecessary if you maintain it as you should. If you’ve been neglecting your garbage disposal, the time to start taking care of it is NOW, so that you don’t face an unexpected (and costly) plumbing or drain issue.
We’ve included a few do’s and don’ts below to keep your garbage disposal working like new.
Cleaning your garbage disposal and sharpening blades is simple; simply use ice! Inexpensive, ice helps break up grease build-up and scours areas that are difficult to reach. Toss a few ice cubes into the disposal once or twice each month, and your garbage disposal will operate perfectly.
Sometimes an eating utensil (fork, spoon) or other item not meant to go into the disposal will accidentally fall in. When this happens, NEVER attempt to retrieve the item with your unprotected hand! If there is no other option, wear safety gloves and either turn off the circuit breaker or unplug the disposal before putting your hand inside.
The best solution is to use a flashlight so that you can determine exactly where the object is, then extract the object using an automotive finger gripper or extra-long needle nose pliers. Sometimes other things you have on hand may work, such as a bent coat hanger or chopsticks.
There are many natural solutions to keeping your disposal odor-free that are environmentally friendly. These include:
Again, Borax is outstanding for stubborn odors – and safe for your garbage disposal. Put 3 or 4 tablespoons in the drain, allow it to stand for about an hour, then flush it away with hot water.
When you have a problem and have tried all of the suggestions above to no avail, call our plumbing professionals at Haley Mechanical. Serious problems may require our know-how and special tools, so don’t hesitate to request a service call!