Over time, our plumbing fixtures become worn down with use. Garbage disposals are one of the most used devices in our kitchens and when they fail, it can be a major inconvenience. The lack of maintenance and misuse can cause the appliance to fail well before its time in addition to the constant operation. Where garbage disposals and other plumbing fixtures all have an expected lifespan, there are some steps you can do to help your garbage disposal last long, and today, we at HWY 103 Plumbing & Heating would like to share these tips.
How to Make Garbage Disposals Last Longer
1) Don’t Pour Grease Down the Drain. It is vital you do not pour grease down the garbage disposal. Not only is an unfriendly substance to garbage disposal, but it is not ideal for general plumbing. Where it can be more convenient to send the grease down the disposal, it is best to dispose of it elsewhere. Grease deposits and buildup will continue to affect the garbage disposal until it malfunctions or fails to operate, causing irreversible damage. Additionally, clogs in plumbing pipes will result in the need for professional cleaning and repairs.
2) Garbage Disposal Cleaning & Maintenance. Garbage disposals are typically a cleaning aid for the kitchen, but just like the vacuum that needs cleaning, the disposal needs regularly cleaning and maintenance. Festering in between the blades and in the nooks and crannies is mildew growth, residue buildup, and food particles. To avoid potential pungent odors and keep the moving parts functioning efficiently, complete the following every 1-4 weeks or so to clean the garbage disposal:
– Use ice trays filled with concentrated vinegar and stick it in the freezer.
– Pop the cubes out and while the garbage disposal is on, flushing them down the sink with cool water.
The vinegar ice will sharpen the blades while the cool water rinses away the debris as the vinegar neutralizes odor causing bacteria. If odors are still prevalent, run the garbage disposal while grinding cut up citrus fruit peeling. To remove any residual debris and residues, once a month pour a pot of boiling water down the sink once a month.
3) Only Use Cold Water in Garbage Disposal. While the garbage disposal is running, be sure to only and always use cold water. The cool water continuously flowing acts as a lubricant for the blades and keeps an already warm motor from overheating. Having the cold water on also effectively pushing the particles down the drain.
4) Be Aware of Garbage Disposal’s Limitations. There are different materials that are cohesive with garbage disposals and also other materials that can result in severe damage and potential replacement if put through the garbage disposal. At all costs, do not put metals and plastic through the disposal. These items will become lodged in the moving parts, leading to the garbage disposal malfunctioning and overheating of the motor, which can easily cause the garbage disposal’s demise.