The Secret to Unclogging Your Garbage Disposal for Good

If you are a homeowner, you know how frustrating it is when your garbage disposal gets clogged. It can cause unpleasant odors, slow draining, and even damage to your plumbing system. Luckily, there are ways to prevent clogs and unclog your garbage disposal for good. In this article, we’ll share some tips and tricks to keep your garbage disposal running smoothly.

The Secret to Unclogging Your Garbage Disposal for Good

Understanding Your Garbage Disposal

Before we dive into the details, let’s take a closer look at how your garbage disposal works. A garbage disposal is a device that is installed under your sink and is designed to break down food waste into small pieces that can easily pass through your plumbing system. It consists of a motor, blades, and a chamber where the food waste is ground up.

Common Causes of Clogs

There are several common causes of clogs in your garbage disposal. Some of the most common include:

  • Putting non-food items in the disposal
  • Pouring grease or oil down the drain
  • Grinding up large or hard food items
  • Failing to run water while the disposal is in use

Prevention Tips

Prevention is key when it comes to keeping your garbage disposal running smoothly. Here are some tips to prevent clogs:

  • Only put food waste in the disposal
  • Avoid grinding up hard or fibrous foods like bones or celery
  • Run cold water while the disposal is in use
  • Avoid pouring grease or oil down the drain

How to Unclog Your Garbage Disposal

If your garbage disposal is clogged, there are several steps you can take to unclog it. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Turn off the power to the disposal. This can be done by unplugging it or turning off the circuit breaker that powers it.
  2. Use a flashlight to look into the disposal to see if you can identify the cause of the clog. If you can see the problem, use tongs or pliers to remove it.
  3. If you can’t see the clog, use a plunger to try to remove it. Fill the sink with enough water to cover the plunger, and then plunge vigorously for several minutes.
  4. If the plunger doesn’t work, try using a plumbing snake. Insert the snake into the disposal and turn it clockwise until you feel resistance. Then, turn it counterclockwise to break up the clog.
  5. Once the clog is removed, turn the power back on to the disposal and run cold water for several minutes to flush out any remaining debris.

Troubleshooting Tips

If your garbage disposal is still not working properly, here are some troubleshooting tips:

  • If the disposal is making a humming sound but not turning, it may be jammed. Use a hex key to try to manually turn the blades.
  • If the disposal is leaking, check the connections and tighten them if necessary.
  • If the disposal is still not working, it may need to be replaced.


Clogs in your garbage disposal can be frustrating, but with the right prevention tips and unclogging techniques, you can keep your disposal running smoothly. Remember to only put food waste in the disposal, avoid pouring grease or oil down the drain, and run cold water while the disposal is in use. If your disposal does get clogged, try using a plunger or plumbing snake to remove the blockage. With these tips, you can keep your garbage disposal in top condition for years to come.

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