Garbage Disposals

Garbage Disposal Safety Tip

If dismantling the Disposal or working on electrical connections, shut off power at the main disconnect. Never put your hand in the Disposal. Use pliers or tongs to remove an object. Never pour a chemical drain cleaner into a Disposal.

Troubleshooting a Garbage Disposal

  • If your Disposal makes a loud whirring noise or stops, it has jammed. Turn it off and wait 5 minutes, then firmly press the reset button on the bottom of the motor housing. (Machines without buttons reset automatically).
  • If the Disposal still doesn’t work, see if it’s designed to be unjammed from below. It may have a small crank or a socket for an Allen wrench to turn the flywheel. Or it may have a reversing switch
  • To cure a clog, disassemble the trap and use a snake.
  • Water dripping from the Disposal usually indicates one or more seals are worn and unit needs to be replaced.
  • Helpful Hint When professional help is required, take the Disposal to the repair service to avoid paying for a service call. To remove it, separate it from the drain elbow and loosen the mounting screws to release it from the support flange.
  • For best service from your Disposal, run cold water during disposal and for a minute after.
  • Never put glass, metal or rubber in the Disposal.
  • Disposals vary, so consult your owner’s manual.

You can’t turn on the motor.

  • Possible Problems :
    • No power.
    • Defective on/off switch.
    • Tripped overload protector switch.
    • Defective motor.
  • Possible solutions :
    • Check the fuse box/circuit breaker, and if the disposal is plugged into a wall outlet, check the outlet.
    • On continuous feed models, check the wall switch.
    • On batch-feed models, check he stopper switch.
    • If the flywheel is jammed.
    • Call for service.

Motor hums, but unit doesn’t grind.

  • Possible Problems :
    • Jammed flywheel.
    • Frozen motor bearings
  • Possible solutions :
    • Free the flywheel.
    • Call for service. You’ll probably have to buy a new unit.

The disposal continuously blows fuses.

  • Possible Problems :
    • Too many appliances plugged into the circuit.
  • Possible solutions :
    • Install a 15-amp circuit just for the disposal.

You can’t stop the disposal.

  • Possible Problems :
    • Defective on/off switch.
  • Possible solutions :
    • Call for service.

The disposal drains slowly.

  • Possible Problems :
    • Not enough water.
    • Clogged drain line.
    • Disposal isn’t grinding finely enough.
  • Possible solutions :
    • Run more cold water when using the disposal.
    • Don’t use harsh chemical agents.
    • Flush with hot water to remove a grease clog, then remove the drainpipe and clear it.

The disposal is making an unusual amount of noise.

  • Possible Problems :
    • Metallic object in the unit.
    • Loose mounting screws are loose.
    • Broken flyweight.
    • The motor is defective.
  • Possible solutions :
    • Call for service.

There is a leak in the disposal.

  • Possible Problems :
    • Loose sink connection.
    • Loose drain connection.
    • Damaged housing gasket.
  • Possible solutions :
    • Tighten the flanges holding the gaskets or replace the gaskets.
    • Tighten the drain flanges or replace the drain gasket.
    • Replace the gasket.