If you own or rent a fairly modern home in Central Oregon, chances are, you have a garbage disposal attached to your sink. While these appliances are a wonderful kitchen accessory and can provide you with efficient food scrap disposal for years to come, they aren’t maintenance free. In fact, neglecting your garbage disposal can cause drain clogs and shorten the life of your disposal.
Maintaining your garbage disposal is fairly simple – in fact, much of disposal maintenance involves avoiding putting damaging substances down your kitchen drains. We’ve rounded up the most essential maintenance tips to keep your garbage disposal in top shape.
- Prevent odors. In order to avoid foul odors, treat your garbage disposal once a month. Add a mixture of baking soda and vinegar directly to your drain; when it’s finished foaming, flush with hot water and soap.
- Avoid harsh chemicals. Chemicals like bleach and household cleaners can harden food waste and kill essential bacteria in your septic tank. Instead, remove food waste buildup on your disposal blades by crushing ice cubes and citrus peels on a regular basis.
- Always use plenty of water. No matter what you’re grinding, be sure to run hot water in your disposal while it’s in use. Then, once the motor stops, continue to flush with water for about 30 seconds to rinse any remaining particles down the drain.
- Use the right dish soap. While the brand of your dish soap doesn’t make a lot of difference when it comes to your garbage disposal, you’ll need a dish soap that contains degreasing ingredients. Grease can build up on your disposal elements, slowing your drain and harboring odor-causing bacteria, and degreasers help to break up grease on dishes and in your disposal itself.
- Avoid disposing of forbidden substances. Your garbage disposal can handle most things you send its way; however, sending these substances down your drain is asking for trouble:
- Potato or banana peels – these starchy and sometimes fibrous peels can form a paste when ground up that will clog most kitchen drains.
- Coffee grounds and eggshells – these substances quickly break down into tiny grains that cling to existing buildup and lead to clogs.
- Fats, oils, and greases – these substances, collectively known by the acronym FOG, quickly coat the interior elements of your disposal and pipes and lead to clogs.
Proper maintenance of your garbage disposal can keep it functioning beautifully for as many as ten years. However, if you’ve experienced a kitchen drain clog, it’s important to contact Mr. Rooter of Central Oregon as soon as possible. We’ll help you determine the issue and restore your sink and disposal to proper working order.