Your garbage disposal is undeniably a great help in the kitchen, especially during cleanup. You might think everything’s just peachy with your unit, but you could be wrong. In the case of units that have been disposing garbage for more than a year, it can get harder and harder to function properly. You never know; the next Thanksgiving dinner or house party may be your unit’s last.
In some cases, a quick call to a repairman will have your garbage disposal working as good as new. In other, more serious situations, the technician may need to make some major repairs or upgrades. If it’s beyond saving, they may recommend replacing your unit.
It’s important to get help before your unit reaches this point, but it can be difficult to see the warning signs. To prevent your garbage disposal from breaking down completely, keep an eye out for these telltale signs and know when to call a Diamond Certified plumber for help.
1. Unable to Engage
If your garbage disposal unit is constantly turning off by itself or it just won’t turn on at all, that’s a pretty clear sign that something’s not right. Before calling in the technician, check the circuit breaker connected to the unit to ensure it doesn’t just need to be reset. You should also check if there’s any damage to the connected circuit to make sure it hasn’t blown.
If there seems to be no problem with the electrical system, this could be a sign of issues with the motor, in which case you should call a professional to diagnose the problem as soon as possible. Alternatively, if you aren’t sure which part is which, call a professional repairman immediately rather than hoping the problem will fix itself.
2. Clogs Up
As part of maintaining your disposal unit, leftovers and other food particles should be disposed of in small quantities to avoid overwhelming the unit. This is usually done by cutting up the food into small pieces. There should also be a list of approved items for unit disposal.
If you’re following these guidelines but your garbage disposal continues to clog up, it may be time for the experts to step in.
3. Frequently Needs To Be Reset
When disposing larger loads, you may have to use the reset button every now and then to help your disposal recover. However, when you’re starting to use it more and more just to get your unit working properly, the wirings or motor may be in trouble. To prevent it from completely breaking down, contact your plumber for a checkup.
4. Longer Disposal Time
If it’s taking your unit longer to dispose of items, it might mean that the blades have dulled. New or well-maintained blades help your garbage disposal get rid of wastes almost immediately.
If you’re experiencing this, it’s best to get a professional opinion. Have a technician check your disposal to see if the blades need sharpening or replacement. If the blades are severely deteriorated or rusted, you may have to replace the entire unit.
5. Lingering (Foul) Odors
Odors coming from the disposal, especially if it’s been newly used, are normal. However, if the smell persists regardless of cleaning or airing, you should be concerned. Call in an expert immediately to diagnose the problem rather than DIY-ing it. The knee-jerk reaction would be to use a chemical cleaner to clean out the unit. However, these kinds of commercial solvents can damage your unit’s parts.
6. Screeching Noises
Any garbage disposal makes grinding noises when chomping at wastes. However, once those noises turn loud and shrill, there could be problems with the blades or motor. One common scenario is that the blades budged, causing gear to grind against areas it should not be grinding against. Alternatively, the motor may have started wearing out. Either way, you should let a professional handle the situation to avoid further damages.
7. Non-Optimal Performance
Like any other machine, your garbage disposal is prone to wear and tear; especially with frequent and heavy use. If your unit isn’t working at optimal levels anymore, there’s no helping it. It might be time to get a replacement. But make sure you get a technician to examine it and see if it can be salvaged before you throw it away,
A kitchen garbage disposal is a luxury many homes enjoy. Even the slightest hint of performance decline can already be worrying, especially in homes where the kitchen is often in use. To avoid any further inconvenience on your end, let professionals handle your garbage disposal inspection and repair.