How To Clean A Garbage Disposal

garbage disposal

If your kitchen sink has a garbage disposal installed, you already know it makes meal prepping and cleanup a breeze. And like most home appliances, with some care and basic cleaning, your disposal will last for many years.

But every now and then, food and scraps can get lodged in your garbage disposal blades. Over time this build up can cause your garbage disposal to put off a foul odor.  To help remove the stench, here’s a few tips on how to clean your garbage disposal.

Things You Should Never Put In Your Garbage Disposal?

Part of keeping your garbage disposal clean is knowing what you never want to put in it. Doing so can damage the unit, its blades, and clog your drain lines. Those forbidden food scraps and pieces can easily backup your sink. Then you’re forced to call a professional plumber to clear your pipes and inspect the disposal for repair or replacement.

Never put these items in your garbage disposal:

  • Coffee Grounds
  • Pasta & Bones
  • Oatmeal and Nuts
  • Onion Skins & Egg Shells
  • Pumpkin and Fibrous Veggies
  • Potato Peels and Fruit Pits
  • Corn Husks & Seafood Shells
  • Cleaning Chemicals
  • Paint and Trash

Here Are 3 Ways To Clean A Garbage Disposal

There are three methods you can try when cleaning your garbage disposal. Each is highly effective, but use the one that’s easiest for you and always remember to wear gloves before you begin cleaning.

White Vinegar and Baking Soda – Pour a ½ cup of baking soda down the drain and a ½ cup of white vinegar. Allow the mixture to sit for 30 minutes, and after that use hot water to flush it down.

Ice Cubes with Vinegar or Rock Salt – The combination of ice cubes and vinegar or ice cubes and rock salt will clean the garbage disposal. Fill the appliance with ice cubes. Next, pour 1 cup of vinegar or 1 cup of rock salt over the ice cubes. Then flush with hot water.

Oxygen Bleach – To clean and deodorize the disposal, create a mixed solution of 1/3 cup of oxygen bleach and 2/3 cup of hot water. After the mixture is poured down the drain, thoroughly flush the disposal with hot water.

With each method mentioned above, always turn off your garbage disposal during cleaning.  It also helps to clean your garbage disposal’s splash guard using standard household dish soap and a sponge to remove any excess food waste.

How Often Should Your Disposal Get Cleaned?

Rarely does anyone ever keep track of what goes down their garbage disposals or drains, day after day. We usually never look back once the food or waste is out of sight. But, a garbage disposal can clog and back up quickly if not cleaned regularly.

That’s why we highly recommend cleaning your garbage disposal once a week. It only takes a few minutes and it’s totally worth the peace of mind. If you have any questions about your garbage disposal and how to clean it, contact Jackson Comfort Services today to speak with our plumbing experts!

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