Repairing your home’s garbage disposal is not a difficult job if you know where to look for potential problems. You will need a few basic tools, such as a screwdriver, adjustable wrench and Allen wrench. If you find any broken parts, you will also need to visit a hardware or plumbing store to purchase the necessary replacements.
Reset the Garbage Disposal First
Start by trying to reset the broken garbage disposal. Most models shut down when the temperature rises to prevent the disposal from overheating. Look for a raised red button or switch that has popped up on the bottom of the unit. Press the button or push the switch back into its original position and try the garbage disposal again. If this does not fix the problem, make sure the garbage disposal is receiving power from the home.
Make Sure the Garbage Disposal is Plugged In
Verify that the power cord is plugged into an electrical outlet that works. Plug in another small appliance to see if the outlet is live. If the second appliance does not work, check the home’s breaker switch to make sure it has not been tripped. Call a highly-trained electrician to repair the outlet if the breaker switch is on and there is still no power to the disposal.
Fixing a Leaky Garbage Disposal
If your garbage disposal still works, but leaks water, there may be a problem with the plumbing connections. Tighten the connection between the drain pipe and the bottom of the disposal unit. If this does not fix the leak, you may have to replace the gasket that seals the connection. If you see water leaking from the top of the unit, it is defective and must be completely replaced. Contact a professional plumber to have your broken garbage disposal removed and a new model installed.
Cleaning Out a Clogged Garbage Disposal
Shut off the power to the garbage disposal before attempting to dislodge any blockages. Unplug the power cord or turn off the breaker switch that controls the kitchen outlets. Reach into the sink and remove any food or other debris from the broken garbage disposal. Turn the blades with your hand to make sure they can move freely. Insert an Allen wrench into the hex-shaped hole in the center of the bottom of the disposal unit. This allows you to turn the blades of the disposal manually to remove any remaining obstructions.
Unclogging a garbage disposal is quite simple and may not require the assistance of a professional plumber. However, if you’ve gone through all the proper steps then it’s time to contact a plumber. Ariel Services, Inc. has years experience working with garbage disposals and can get your unclogged in no time.