Five Simple Steps to Prevent Garbage Disposal Odor | Mr. Rooter Plumbing of San Diego, CA

If you’ve been noticing an odor coming from your kitchen sink, Mr. Rooter Plumbing of San Diego confirms that most of the time, this odor is produced by your garbage disposal – and for good reason.

Disposals are dark and have a consistent source of moisture as well as a steady supply of food scraps and other organic material. In short, they’re the perfect place for bacteria and mold to multiply.

How Can You Address Garbage Disposal Odor?

For the majority of garbage disposals, addressing odor issues is as simple as giving your system a proper cleaning. While this may seem like a bit of a tricky process, it’s easier than you might think. Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Scrub the blades. Don’t worry- there’s no need to hand-scrub your disposal’s blades. Instead, pour a dozen ice cubes and ½ cup of rock salt (available at your grocery or home improvement store) into the drain. Run your garbage disposal for about a minute, then add hot water to flush the remaining salt and ice from the system.
  2. Turn off the power. Disconnect your disposal’s plug from the wall outlet or flip the circuit breaker that provides it with power. Be sure to check whether the disposal has power before proceeding.
  3. Kill bacteria. You won’t need harsh chemicals to prevent bacteria growth in your garbage disposal. Instead, simply pour ½ cup of baking soda and one cup of vinegar into the drain and let it bubble for about fifteen minutes. The acidity and fizzing action can kill bacteria like E. coli and salmonella.
  4. Scrub the exterior. Make a paste of the same baking soda and vinegar and use an old toothbrush to scrub both sides of the rubber flange that separates your sink from your garbage disposal. You can also clean the drain itself as well as the drain stopper to prevent bacteria growth on these items.
  5. Flush with hot water. Replace the drain stopper and fill your sink about half full of hot water and a few drops of dish soap. Then, restore power to your garbage disposal, remove the drain stopper, and let your disposal run for a minute until all the water has flushed through the system.

With proper care, your garbage disposal should last several years. If you’re experiencing persistent odors, drain backups, or garbage disposal failures, however, contact Mr. Rooter Plumbing of San Diego as soon as possible to address these issues before they cause damage to your system.