Garbage disposals seem to break down with no warning at all. Sometimes, this necessitates servicing by an HVAC professional, but there are a number of ways to maintain your garbage disposal without expert intervention. We suggest that you heed this advice:
- Avoid hard substances — A garbage disposal is not indestructible. It won’t grind up chicken bones, popcorn kernels, fruit pits, hard seeds, or shellfish remnants. Even if it does, the blades will become dulled.
- Throw fibrous items in the trash — Although stringy substances like banana peels, celery, and corn husks are soft, their fibers can cause drain blockages, leading to expensive plumbing issues.
- Keep egg shells away — This deserves its own tip because egg shells don’t seem like they’d be a problem. However, chopping up egg shells to fit through the disposal turns them into a sand-like substance that can clog your pipes.
- Exercise common sense — A garbage disposal is not an incinerator. Don’t think for a second that you can use one to get rid of even the smallest pieces of non-organic trash like plastic, cigarette butts, rubber bands, and twist ties.
- Grease — Again, this one deserves its own suggestion because it doesn’t seem like it would cause a problem. Grease is liquid … sorta. So why can’t you pour it down your drain and/or garbage disposal? Because clogging occurs as remnants of the grease stay behind in the pipe and solidify.
- Run cold water — You should run cold water for 30-60 seconds after items have cleared the disposal to help them down the drain. Avoid hot water, as this can melt fat that may cause clogging.
- Keep it clean — There are three steps involved here: 1) wipe the inner side of the rubber entryway with a paper towel (garbage disposal “off,” please), 2) grind up ice to knock off accumulated debris from the blades, and 3) toss in some orange peels to improve the smell.
For more expert ways to help maintain your garbage disposal or other home comfort issues, please contact the professionals at Roth Heating & Cooling. We’ve been serving Portland and the surrounding area since 1976.