How to keep your Garbage Disposal clean this summer

Tai Irwin
28 Oct 2015

BY Tai Irwin / 0 Comments

Garbage disposal repair

The warmer months are almost upon us, which means silly season celebrations, visitors and dinner parties. Alongside all the fun and frivolity, our household waste can swell to epic proportions – and the last thing anybody wants on those hot summer days is an overflowing rubbish bin, attracting every pest and rodent in the neighborhood!

Garbage disposals are a great way to deal with food and organic waste in your home. We’ve helped many of our customers across Sydney solve their waste problems by installing disposals, and by helping them keep their garbage disposals clean and in tip-top working order.

Here’s everything you need to know about disposals, how to best use them and how to avoid a broken garbage disposal:

Green and clean garbage disposals:

In a perfect world, every home would have its own backyard compost system. Composting is easily the most environmentally friendly way to deal with food and organic waste, which we know as many of our customers are passionate greenies. But we also know many houses and apartments simply do not have space for a compost bin, and for these households, garbage disposals are the greenest choice.

Garbage disposals are an affordable and convenient option for family homes. They keep that rotting food (and the accompanying smell!) out of the rubbish bin, and also help to keep pests away from your home. Garbage disposals are also kinder on the planet because they keep food waste out of land fill, with many water treatment centres now putting disposal waste to secondary uses like fertilisers.
How to avoid a broken garbage disposal:

If you already have a garbage disposal, you will know how handy they are, and you will know how annoying it can be when they run into a problem. Like many of our household appliances, we take our disposals units for granted until they become clogged and stop working!

To keep your garbage disposal clean and in tip-top working order this summer, ensure you:

Keep it cool:

When using your garbage disposal, make sure you’re running cold water not hot. Hot water can melt the food your disposal is trying to grind up, making the waste cling to the sides. Cold water, on the other hand, hardens food, making it easier for the garbage disposal to grind it up and push it out the drain pipe and out of your life for good!

Run it on the regular:

To stop the parts from rusting or locking up, turn on the water and run the disposal every couple of days – even if you don’t have anything to grind up. This will also help avoid any leftover foods inside the disposal from hardening, causing nasty odors and clogs.

Avoiding a clogged garbage disposal:

While we all know not to put plastic or metal in our disposals, there are some food scraps that are also not garbage disposal friendly – here’s the most common culprits you should void:

  • Big bones, seeds, or pits (including those avocado stones!) – these hard items can become stuck in the drain pipe, will dull your disposal blades and can jam your whole unit.
  • Grease or oil – while these liquids seem like they go down easily enough, they can solidify inside a garbage disposal and cause clogs.
  • Starchy foods like pasta, rice and potato peels – avoid putting these starchy items down the disposal – they can cling to the sides and make it difficult to flush out into the drain. These scraps will also tend to expand and can cause a clog in your garbage disposal.

Fresh and clean:

While soap and water are great for keeping your garbage disposal clean, we also tell our customers to use the peel from their citrus fruits as a more natural cleaning, freshening solution. The peel from your lemons, oranges and limes will help get rid of nasty smells, and will help keep your garbage disposal clean.

Despite our best efforts, garbage disposals do sometimes require a little expert attention. If you run into a clogging problem, or have a broken garbage disposal that needs fixing, turn the power off at the switch and give us a call right away. Do not ever put your hand into your garbage disposal to unclog it – even if it is turned off. We don’t need to go into detail around the disasters this could cause!

If you’re thinking of having a garbage disposal installed in your home, there is no need for a major renovation – just call your local plumber at Tai Irwin, and we can give you the best advice to upgrade your kitchen sink system to include this affordable, environmentally friendly option.