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Garbage Disposal Do’s and Don’ts – 2024 Tips

A garbage disposal can assist you to deal with food scraps conveniently. However, you must know how to use it well for this to be possible. Experts from warn that you can create serious plumbing problems if you don’t use your garbage disposal correctly.

Some homeowners think that their garbage disposal can handle anything. But, they normally end up learning the hard way. In this post, we shall discuss the do’s and don’ts of garbage disposal.


  • Use your garbage disposal regularly

Some people argue that electrical appliances should be used sparingly to prevent them from wearing out. However, this shouldn’t be the same with your garbage disposal. Always make sure that you use your garbage disposal at least three times every week.

This prevents the appliance from clutching up and also prevents the blades from rust or corrosion. Running your garbage disposal regularly ensures that any food remains in the appliance are flushed away, thus preventing any possible blockage.

  • Use water, citrus fruits, and ice to keep it clean

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You should never underestimate the importance of keeping your garbage disposal clean. This comes with numerous benefits, like preventing the possibilities of foul smell. In addition to that, it keeps the chopping blades sharp, as well as ensuring the longevity of this appliance.

Although bleach is an effective way of cleaning the appliance, you shouldn’t use it so often to clean the appliance. Rather, you should use cold water, with a few ice cubes to clean your garbage disposal. In addition to this, you can also use baking soda and salt to clean as this assists in cleaning the pipes and blades. Using frozen vinegar will also get the job done.

Another effective method of cleaning this essential appliance is throwing in chopped citrus fruits like lemon. Don’t forget to include the peels as they have the most needed acid. Doing that helps your appliance to remain in good condition and also prevents the foul smell from forming.

Lastly, use an old toothbrush to clean the areas surrounding the rim. You can use some soap whenever needed. If you don’t have soap, just use some of the products that we’ve highlighted above and you will be surprised by the results.

  • Make sure that you chop up the waste

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This might sound so obvious. However, most people expect their garbage disposal to do almost every other thing. You should never pour your entire waste into the sink and expect your garbage disposal to do the rest of the work for you. You should note that the blades are not as powerful and large as you think.

Rather, make sure that you sift through the waste, and then chop the leftovers into small pieces before feeding them into your garbage disposal. Think of it as trying to load a paper shredder with many sheets of paper at once. This can jam the blades of the shredder—and this is what happened when to feed your garbage disposal with a lot of food. Doing that cannot only make your garbage disposal to jam. Within a few days, you’ll not only be dealing with a jammed appliance in your kitchen, but also foul smell.

Avoid making unnecessary mistakes. It’s good to take some extra time to chop your food into small pieces. This will assist in making your garbage disposal fast and efficient.

  • Flush your garbage disposal after use

After chopping the leftover, don’t switch the machine immediately. Let water run through the garbage disposal for around 30 seconds. This assists in flushing any stuck food remains out of the system.


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There are certain times you’ll think that you are doing the right thing, but in reality, you are harming your garbage disposal. The following are some of the things that you should avoid doing if you have a garbage disposal in your home.

  • Don’t use hot water

Although you might be used to cleaning your utensils with hot water, always use cold water to clean your garbage disposal. You should note that hot water softens up the food remnants in the garbage disposal. This, in turn, makes the water to cling to and clog the pipes of the system.

  • Don’t put utensils close to your garbage disposal

This risks non-food items like spoons, knives, and forks getting into your garbage disposal. Such items can damage your garbage disposal, and make the blades blunt. The damage can even be significant if a porcelain or glass cup or mug ends up in the garbage disposal. Also, you should never grind other items like paper with your garbage disposal.

In case you have concerns that non-food items might end up in your garbage disposal, always leave the appliance switched off until you clear the sink.

  • Don’t grind non-perishable foodstuffs

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Everyone understands that bones are messy, especially after grilling a turkey. However, you should never throw bones into your garbage disposal. Apart from making the blades blunt, bone can also slide through, and cause a serious blockage.

You should always through bones into your trashcan, together with the hard seeds or pits from fruits. Although your garbage disposal is designed for tough kitchen jobs, it cannot handle every other job in your kitchen. Also, it won’t slice anything too tiny to be captured by its blades.

  • Avoid grinding starchy or fibrous foods

Some foods like rice and pasta normally expand upon getting wet. Therefore, any food that’s not diced and sliced by your garbage disposal will eventually block the pipes. Also, you should never throw fibrous foods like lettuce, potato feelings, or onion skins.

These items can bind around the blades, causing it to slow down, and eventually jamming them. Removing these items by hand is risky, can cost you a finger. Therefore, avoid putting yourself into unnecessary risk.

Bottom Line

Well, these are simple things that are overlooked by many people. Following them will not only ensure the efficiency of your garbage disposal, but it will also reduce the chances of the appliance breaking down. In case you notice that your garbage disposal isn’t working efficiently, let an expert come and check it. At the end of the day, you don’t want an ineffective appliance lying in your kitchen.

About Adam Miller