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Garbage Disposals: The Do’s and Don’ts

If you have a garbage disposal for your kitchen sink, you know it can be a real time saver when it comes to cleaning up after a meal — if it’s maintained properly. Below are some great tips for using your garbage disposal to make sure that everything runs smoothly. Keep reading to learn more from the experts at Best Plumbing!

The Do’s
  • Always run cold water when using your garage disposal. You want food particles to get flushed down the drain instead of caught up in the unit. Using cold water helps ensure that any fat or grease in the food stays solidified so that it doesn’t stick to the walls of your pipes or clog up the disposal trap.
  • Run your disposal regularly to avoid the build up of rust. About once a month, pour a little dish soap inside and run the disposal with cold water to help remove any grime that might have accumulated. To keep the blades sharp, periodically dump ice cubes in unit and run it until the ice is gone.
  • Understand that garbage disposals work best to clean up small amounts of food waste, such as when doing the dishes. Large amounts of food waste should be placed in the composting bin, not flushed down the drain.
The Don’ts
  • Don’t pour liquid grease, fat, or oil down your garage disposal! It will coat the inside of the disposal and can cause problems once it cools down and solidifies.
  • Don’t put non-food scrapes down your disposal. Things like paper, chemicals, cigarette butts, etc., can damage the disposal blades and motor. Non-food waste should go in the trash or recycling.
  • Don’t grind extremely fibrous scraps, such as onion skins or celery stalks. The fibers can get tangled in the blades and cause a jam. Starchy materials like potato peels are also best avoided — the combination of water and grinding can turn them into a glue-like material.

Sometimes mistakes happen and something gets puts in the disposal that causes it to clog. If that happen, check out our post on how to fix a blocked garbage disposal to get things up and running again. For more home plumbing advice, visit our blog or Youtube channel.

Best Plumbing has been serving Puget Sound residents since 1968. Whether it’s helping you with a leaky faucet or installing plumbing for your commercial project, Best Plumbing is here for you. We proudly serve the Seattle and Bellevue areas. Give us a call today!

Photo Credit: Fede13, available under Creative Commons CCO.

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