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Serving the Olympia, WA area since 1994



Garbage Disposal Overload: Taking Care of Your Kitchen Sink Plumbing

Monday, September 18th, 2017 at 11:00 am

Closeup of the hands of a woman washing a lettuce and some other vegetables in the kitchen sinkThere are certain plumbing appliances in your household that you could probably never imagine living without. Take, for instance, your water heater. There are others that are—fair enough to say—more of a luxury than a necessity, such as the garbage disposal. Still though, even though you don’t have to have a garbage disposal, it’s still pretty handy!

Once you’ve gotten used to the benefits and convenience that a garbage disposal has to offer, it’s easy to see why a problem with this system can leave you feeling rather frustrated. Fortunately, if you do run into a problem with this system, you can give us a call for quality Lacey, WA kitchen plumbing services. But we’d also like to help you avoid a garbage disposal malfunction to begin with, if at all possible.

Some Tips on What to Keep Out of Your Garbage Disposal

Failing to keep the care of your garbage disposal a priority can not only lead to damage to the unit itself, but can also compromise your drain and sewer lines. There’s this common misconception that the blades of a garbage disposal are sharp, and therefore can chop up anything you put down your kitchen sink drain. Unfortunately, this is just not true.

Your garbage disposal does have “blades,” if that’s what you want to call them. They are actually grinder plates that rely on centrifugal force in order to grind down food waste. Then, the waste if flushed down the drain, and the flow of water (yes you should keep your faucet running alongside the disposal system) helps the waste move all the way down the drain. But what items can overload your garbage disposal? Keep reading to find out!

  • Hard Items: This includes items like bones and fruit pits. There are some newer garbage disposal systems on the market that advertise they can handle fruit pits—but honestly in almost all cases you’re better off disposing of these in the trash.
  • Pasta and Rice: True, these foods aren’t going to damage your garbage disposal like hard items will. However, they can absorb water in your pipes and expand, causing blockages in your drains.
  • Fibrous Food Waste: This includes things like corn husks and celery stalks. These items can get wrapped up in the moving parts of your garbage disposal, and it can then be damages as it struggles to continue with its regular operation.
  • Fats, Oil, and Grease: Otherwise known as FOG, this isn’t necessarily a threat to the garbage disposal itself, but rather your kitchen sink drain and sewer line. If you pour these hot liquid down your kitchen sink after cooking, they congeal once they hit the cooler interior of your pipes. It’s only a matter of time before this builds up and results in serious clogs within your plumbing system.

Garbage disposals are typically pretty reliable, so long as you use them properly. If your garbage disposal does malfunction or shut down for some reason, first check to see if the reset button is the solution. This will usually be enough to get the disposal back up and running.

If not, then it’s a good idea to hire one of our professional plumbers. We’ll come and assess the system to see if it’s a simple repair that you need, or perhaps a bit more complex garbage disposal replacement.

Whether you’re seeking repairs or a plumbing installation for your kitchen or some other area of your home, you can turn to Brooks Plumbing Co. Contact us today!

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