Although not all kitchens have a garbage disposal and many people are fine without having one, there is no denying how convenient a garbage disposal can be in removing food remains from your sink.  Unfortunately, like everything else, there are times where through usage, problems may arise with the garbage disposal.  Before purchasing a new garbage disposal to replace your existing one, there are some basic troubleshooting you should try first.  In this article, we will discuss the troubleshooting procedure a person should try on their garbage disposal before declaring the need to purchase and install a new one.

What To Do If The Disposal Does Not Turn On?

If you turn on the switch to run the garbage disposal and the motor does not run, then that means the garbage disposal is not getting any power.  The following are some steps a person can take to try and resolve the issue before declaring the garbage disposal dead:

  • Make sure the disposal is plugged into the outlet.
  • Press the reset button on the bottom of the disposal.
  • Check the circuit breaker to make sure the fuse has not been blown out.

If none of these are the issues, then there might be a problem with the power outlet.  Plug another small device (such as a phone charger) to see if it will recharge your phone.  If no, then the power outlet might need to be replaced.  If yes, then the garbage disposal might need to be replaced.

What To Do If You Hear A Hum But No Grind?

If you hear a hum but no grinding, then that means there is most likely something in the disposal that is preventing the blades from spinning such as bones or silverware that might have fallen in.  Running disposal when it hums and does not grind will eventually burn out the motor, so it is important to try and troubleshoot the problem as soon as possible.  The following are some steps a person can take to try and resolve the issue:

  • Turn off the power to the garbage disposal by turning off the power switch, unplugging the disposal, and turning off the circuit breaker.
  • Use an offset wrench to manually turn the flywheel turning hole at the bottom of the garbage disposal.
  • Use pliers to remove whatever the cause of the blockage problem was.
  • Remove the offset wrench and press the reset button.
  • Turn on the sink water and restore power to the unit.

What To Do Is The Garbage Disposal Leaks?

Sometimes a garbage disposal may leak.  There are three common areas where this might be the cause, all requiring simple repairs.  The areas are the sink flange, the hose that leads to the dishwasher, or the discharge pipe.

Sink Flange

If the leak is at the sink flange, the following are some steps that can be taken to resolve the problem:

  • Turn off the power source to the garbage disposal.
  • Remove the garbage disposal from the mounting rack.
  • Tighten the screws or bolts that connect the flange to the sink. Before tightening, it might be necessary to add a plumber’s putty between the flange and the sink to create a tighter seal.
  • Mount the disposal back onto the mounting rack and restore power.

Dishwasher Hose

If the leak is with the dishwasher hose, then the solution is rather simple.

  • Tighten the clamp connecting the dishwasher hose, or
  • Replace the dishwasher hose.

Drainage Pipe  

If the leak is at the drainage pipe, then the following steps can be taken to try and resolve the problem:

  • Tighten the screws or bolts between the discharge pipe and the garbage disposal.
  • If the leak is still occurring, then replace the seal between the discharge pipe and the garbage disposal.

Contact Us

If nothing seems to work, contact us at Conyers Plumbing.  We will send a trained professional to investigate the problem and offer possible solutions to either fixing the problem or replacing the unit.