A garbage disposal is a handy feature in most modern homes. It seems somehow capable of chewing up and swallowing virtually anything you put in it. However, to avoid plumber repairs, there are some things that you really should not be giving it to “eat”.
What To NOT Feed Your Garbage Disposal
To avoid stopping up your pipes and creating a backed up, stinky mess in your kitchen sink for your plumber to fix, avoid putting the following items in your garbage disposal:
Hot Water While it’s perfectly fine to run hot water in the sink while you’re not using the disposal, be sure to only use cold water while the grinding feature is in use.
Grease or Fat Although it may seem harmless to pour hot liquid grease from down the drain, when it cools, it will congeal and plug up your drain lines downstream. Instead, pour grease into a can or glass jar and throw it in the dumpster once it has cooled.
Drain Cleaning Chemicals Not only are these chemicals potentially harmful to the plumbing system and to the environment, it can also be dangerous for anyone touching the affected area. If you’ve already tried using strong drain line cleaners before calling your plumber for repairs, be sure to let us know so we can take the appropriate precautions.
Fibrous Foods Celery, corn husks, carrots, potato peels, and other foods that can wrap around the disposal parts, can damage the motor of your disposal. Throw these foods in the trash, rather than down the sink.
Starchy Foods Pasta, rice, potatoes and beans turn into a thick pasty glob that can clog your drain. Tie those unwanted leftovers up into a plastic bag and toss them in the trash.
Hard or Non-Food Materials Avoid putting bones, fruit pits, and any non-food items (bottle caps, plant clippings, cigarette butts, etc.) down the drain. These items don’t break down in the disposal, and will either clog the sink or break your disposal.
Taking Care of Your Garbage Disposal
While it’s smart to replace disposals over seven years old, it will only be as good as the drain line serving it. Have your plumber snake your kitchen drain line every two years or so as preventive maintenance to ensure unobstructed flow.