Garbage Disposal – Do’s and Don’ts

Garbage disposal is a fantastic appliance that makes everyday living easier and duties more manageable. It’s quite a sturdy machine and most problems arise from improper operation and maintenance. If you keep in mind a few things when it comes to how you run your disposal and maintain it, the chances of plumbing and drain problems will be brought down to a minimum.


  • Clean the disposal from time to time with a little dish soap and cold water and let it run for a minute or so.
  • Prevent odors and microbes by using Borax, which is a natural sanitizer and completely safe for the components. You can also throw in some lemons and oranges or let some baking soda sit for several hours before running the machine.
  • Use the disposal regularly. If you leave it unused it can get corroded and food particles can build up and obstruct parts from moving.
  • Throw food waste with a strong flow of cold water. Cold water will make grease solidify into lumps, so it won’t coat the parts and it will be chopped.
  • Grinding chicken and fish bones, egg shells and pits will act as a scourer that will clean the grinding chamber.
  • Large pieces of waste shouldn’t be crammed into the disposal. Rather cut them up beforehand and throw them in one at a time.
  • Wait till the grinding is finished before you switch off the motor. Cold water should be running the whole time. Turn off the water some 15 seconds after the disposal is switched off. This way remaining particles will be washed off.


  • Don’t ever throw non-food waste in the garbage disposal. The disposal is intended for biodegradable waste and anything else can and probably will damage the blades and other parts.
  • Don’t grind glass, plastic, paper, anything which is flammable. Cigarette stubs are also out of the question.
  • Don’t pour grease, oil nor fat, as these can accumulate on the blades and other components obstructing them from working properly. They can also obstruct the drain.
  • Don’t use hot water when you are grinding food waste. That will make the fat and oil softer and they can build upon the components or clog the drain.
  • Don’t throw food waste that is high in fibers, such as artichokes, onion skins, celery nor corn husks. The fibers can become entangled and jam disposal’s components.
  • Don’t grind too much potato skin and peels. Potato is starchy and when it’s combined with water it will turn into a sticky paste which can jam the components.
  • Don’t grind foods that expand in contact with water, such as pasta and rice, because they can cause clogs.
  • Coffee grounds are a popular deodorizer for disposals, but they are highly likely to produce clogs in the drain.
  • Don’t grind big animal bones.

These tips should keep your disposal free from problems. If you haven’t been handling your disposal carefully until now and you need a professional plumbing service to repair your disposal, you can call Plumbing Plus. We are available for emergencies 24/7 and we perform top-quality plumbing services in San Diego, Escondido, Rancho Bernardo, San Marcos, Poway, Ramona and many more. Feel free to contact us now and fix your plumbing problem in no time!