By far the most common, homeowner plumbing issue about garbage disposals, according to Mr. Rooter, your local Bergen County plumber, is the garbage disposal’s flywheel. A jammed flywheel is most often caused by overloading the garbage disposal or attempting to dispose of inappropriate items like bottle caps and little plastic army men. It may be corrected by shutting the power off to the garbage disposal and removing the clog.
If removing the clog by hand does not work, there may be items stuck deep in between the garbage disposal’s impeller blades. One way to remove deeply lodged materials is to try and move the flywheel with the aid of a force cup plunger’s wooden handle. Simply stick the handle in between the impeller blades. Then apply clockwise pressure until the impeller blades start to move. Afterward, use the handle to apply counterclockwise pressure until the impeller blades move unhindered in that direction as well.
Mr. Rooter Tip of the Week
Tip #1 Turn off the power to the unit, insert an impeller wrench into the square hole at the bottom, and work the wrench back and forth to try to dislodge the jammed article.
Tip #2 Turn the power on and release the machine. If the motor still hums, shut the power off and push a piece of old broomstick (about 2-feet long) into the drain until it contacts the bottom of the disposer. Holding the stick against the side of the drain, push it in a circle to turn the impeller.
Tip #3 If the broomstick spins the impeller, remove the object with tongs, a magnetic wand, or a piece of duct tape stuck in reverse on the end of the stick. Don’t try to get the object with your hands. Reset the disposer. If this method does not un-jam the unit, it’s time to call a professional plumber.