Tag Archives: Garbage disposal repair

DIY Garbage Disposal Repair

You may be able to handle some garbage disposal repairs yourself, although serious issues are always best left to an expert. If your disposer isn’t working the way it should, try one of the DIY Garbage Disposal Repairfollowing fixes before calling in a repair person.

Check the Power

If you flip the disposer switch and nothing happens, you simply may not have power. Double-check to see if the disposal is plugged in — the power cord may have become dislodged from its socket below the sink.

If that isn’t the problem, take a look at your electrical service panel. A circuit breaker may have tripped or a fuse may have blown. If your disposal is on a dedicated circuit, you might not be aware of the problem until you try to use your appliance.

Try the Reset Button

If you’re certain that your appliance is getting power, you may simply need to reset the unit.

Disposals are equipped with an overload protection switch that turns the unit off automatically if it runs too long or becomes jammed. This overload protector is typically on the bottom of the disposal facing the floor. On most brands, it’s a small, red button.

If the button is popped out, try pressing it gently to reset the unit. You should hear a tiny click when it resets, similar to the sound the buttons on a GFI electrical outlet make. If the reset button keeps popping back out, unplug the disposer and wait about 10 minutes. Plug it back in and try the reset button again.

If this doesn’t work, or if the reset button continues to pop out, it’s time call an appliance repair technician.

Clearing a Jammed Disposal

Items can become stuck between the impeller blades and the drain hole in your garbage disposal.

You will definitely know if your disposal is jammed or clogged because the motor will hum but you won’t hear the blades turning or grinding. Or, it could begin running and then stop abruptly before you can turn it off. The jam may be caused by a bottle cap or a piece of food, such as a bone or fruit pit.

Begin by unplugging the power cord or turning off the breaker to the disposer. Next, use a flashlight and a pair of tongs — never your hands — to remove any materials stuck in the blades. If you are unable to remove the offending object, move on to the next step and go back for it later.

Look for a hex-shaped hole at the bottom of the unit. Insert a disposal wrench or an Allen wrench into the hole and turn it back and forth in both directions to free the impeller blades. Continue to work the wrench back and forth until you can turn the blades freely. Go back and try to remove the obstruction, if you weren’t previously able to retrieve it.

A Note of Caution

Back in the old days, people often tried to clear jams in their disposer by sticking a broomstick or heavy-duty screwdriver into the blades and compelling them to turn by brute force. Today, this is a very bad idea.

First, it’s dangerous to life and limb. Second, you can permanently damage the appliance and void your warranty. Third, it may be a useless waste of a perfectly good broom. If the wrench approach doesn’t work, you need professional help.

For all of your household appliance sales, installation and repair needs, trust Complete Appliance Repair, serving Woods Cross and the entire Salt Lake City area. Contact us today for all of your garbage disposal repair needs.

What Not to Put in the Garbage Disposal

Your garbage disposal may seem all-powerful, but like any other appliance, it has its weaknesses too. It’s easy to use and helps you avoid unpleasant odors in the trash, but as Garbage Disposalconvenient as it is, the disposal isn’t meant to handle every type of food. In fact, some items can damage your disposal, necessitating repairs or even replacement.

Find out what you need to avoid putting down your garbage disposal to keep it running smoothly.

Grease and Grounds

Grease and oils may easily slide down the disposal, but fats distribute a greasy film over the blades, which makes them less effective. The grease and oil from foods also can solidify and build up in the pipes, resulting in clogged drains and expensive rooter bills.

Like grease and oils, coffee grounds seem to go down the garbage disposal quite well, and many homeowners rely on them to help eliminate sink odors. Over time, however, grounds can build up in the pipes like sediment, backing up the works and causing issues with the disposer’s function.

Fibrous, Stringy and Expandable Foods

Fibrous foods, including celery, corn husks, asparagus, leeks, carrot peels and onion skins can become wrapped around the blades of the disposal. This exerts resistance on the blades and prevents the motor from operating properly.

Similarly, the membrane on the inside of eggshells can wrap around the disposal blades, resulting in damage. Small amounts of these foods may not cause problems, if they are accompanied by strong stream of cold water before, during and after using the appliance. Whenever possible, just toss these troublemakers into the trash or compost pile instead.

Foods that expand when cooking, such as pasta, beans, rice and potato peels, also do not belong in the disposal. Even after being ground up, these foods can continue to absorb water, forming a paste-like substance that can clog the disposal and pipes.

Hard Foods and Non-Food Items

Though some people believe that occasionally grinding up certain types of hard materials can clean the walls and interior mechanisms of the disposer, these items actually can cause significant damage. A small chicken or fish bone or a few eggshells here or there may be fine, but any hard item such as the pits from peaches, plums, cherries, avocados and other stone fruits and berries can potentially wreak havoc as they bounce around in the disposal.

Non-food items are never appropriate for the garbage disposal. Cigarette butts, sponges, plant clippings, plastic, paper and other non-food materials cannot be broken down enough to wash them through the appliance and the drain. A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t eat it, neither should the disposal!

By following these simple tips, you can keep your hungry sink friend running smoothly and efficiently. If something does go wrong, Complete Appliance Repair is here for you. Contact us today for all of your home appliance sales, installation, maintenance and repair needs, including help with your garbage disposal.

Is it Time to Replace Your Garbage Disposal?

Does your garbage disposal need replacement or merely repair? You can recognize the warning signs of serious problems if you know what to look for. Calling for minor repairs or Garbage Disposal Replacementmaintenance at any sign of trouble may help prolong the life of your unit. But, as with any appliance, you may want to consider replacement at some point. Following are some signs that now may be the time to think about purchasing a new disposal.

Motor Problems

Issues with the motor are sure signs that you need to replace your garbage disposal. But how can you tell if you have a motor problem?

You may think your disposal is broken if it will not turn on, but you could be wrong. You may be able to press the reset button on the bottom of the unit or flip the circuit breaker to get the unit working again. If those don’t fix the problem, the motor may have a fault. Another indicator of possible motor issues is excessive or unusual grinding sounds or a great deal of vibration.

Issues with How the Disposal Runs

Even if your disposal is not showing obvious signs of damage, you may want to consider replacement if is not running optimally. Though garbage disposals are generally designed to last about 10 to 12 years, wear and tear through regular use can cause them to work less effectively and run more slowly. Likewise, improper use will result in premature failure.

If your household routinely does a large amount of cooking, it may be a good idea to replace your garbage disposal with a model that has greater horsepower to better handle the job.

Repeated Repairs

Some problems with garbage disposals can be easily repaired. For example, if the flywheel becomes stuck due to something being lodged in the unit, a repair expert can remove the item to restore functionality. Or, if the disposal springs a leak at the sink flange, dishwasher connection or discharge drainpipe, an experienced disposal repair technician can tighten the bolts and clamps.

But if these or other repair issues occur frequently, it may be time to replace your disposer. Repeated problems with any home appliance is a definite sign that you need to purchase a new model soon.

Not sure if your disposal needs repairs or if you should just buy a new one? Schedule a free consultation with the professionals at Complete Appliance Repair in Bountiful, Utah. Our experienced technicians can troubleshoot the problem and recommend the most economical approach to repair or replacement. Call us today if you suspect it’s time to replace your garbage disposal.