A garbage disposal is a great appliance to add to your kitchen. In addition to reducing the amount of garbage you send to landfills, it can help keep your kitchen smelling fresher and your sink flowing faster. It is important to maintain your garbage disposal properly to keep it performing well and avoid unnecessary repairs. Here are a few tips of things you should and shouldn’t do with your garbage disposal.
• Always run cold water when grinding with your disposal. This helps the blades grind more efficiently and pushes the food through the holes in the disposal and into the pipes below. Be sure to keep the water running for about 15-20 seconds after grinding is complete to be sure all food is through the system.
• Keep your blades sharp so that they can work effectively. If you begin to notice the disposal taking longer to grind foods, it is likely that the blades are becoming dull. Fortunately, sharpening them is quick, easy, and cheap. Fill a glass with ice cubes and pour them into the disposal. Turn on the cold water and run the disposal as usual until all of the ice has been ground. This will sharpen the blades and make your disposal more efficient again.
• Grind orange or lemon peels once a month. The acid is a great natural cleanser for the garbage disposal. As an added bonus, the oils smell great and will leave a fresh scent in the disposal and the kitchen, too.
• Be sure to grind food immediately. Acids in food left sitting in the disposal can damage the garbage disposal system if left in contact with the system for an extended amount of time.
• Never run hot water in your garbage disposal when grinding. Hot water liquefies fatty substances in the food you are grinding and that fat will coat your disposal and your pipes. This can cause clogs and repairs in the future.
• Don’t grind anything harder than your average leftover food in the disposal. It is meant for nothing harder than small bones. Large bones, plastic and metal can damage or completely destroy your garbage disposal.
• Don’t overload your garbage disposal. If you have a lot of food to put through the system, add it a bit at a time so that it has room for the blades to rotate and grind everything completely.