Garbage Disposal Tips For Preventing a Plumbing Disaster On Your Thanksgiving

Garbage Disposal Tips for Thanksgiving


Who doesn’t love turkey, gravy, stuffing, and all the fixins’ of Thanksgiving? We know we do and we would gladly accept the invite, but we would prefer not under these circumstances. Here are a few tips for keeping your garbage disposal running smoothly this Thanksgiving.

Garbage Disposal Do’s:

  • Do keep your garbage disposal clean. After washing dishes, pour a little bit of dish soap into your garbage disposal and run the unit for up to a minute with cold water. Also, acids contained within citrus fruits act as a natural cleaning agent, so consider throwing a few peels down(not too many at a time though) into your garbage disposal to naturally clean and deodorize.
  • Do keep a constant COLD stream of water running before, during, and after using your garbage disposal. Hot water tends to liquefy fats and grease, which will then cool and coagulate on the inside of your home’s plumbing, which can lead to costly repairs.
  • Do feed your garbage disposal slowly. Overloading your garbage disposal can result in jams which can burn out the motor, trip the reset breaker, or worse. Feeding items slowly will ensure that waste items are sufficiently ground and are able to pass through the drains without any issues.
  • Do use your disposal regularly as this will prevent rust and corrosion

Garbage Disposal Don’ts:

  • DON’T put grease or fats into the garbage disposal. Fats and grease are not water soluble and can accumulate on the interior walls of your home drain piping, leading to slow or completely blocked drains.
  • DON’T grind hard items such as plastics, metals, glass, large bones, pits.
  • DON’T put fibrous items into your garbage disposal. These fibers can act like wrap around moving parts and ultimately jamming your disposal. Avoid items such as artichokes, onions skins, corn husks, celery stalks, chard, kale, asparagus, etc.
  • DON’T put anything that is not biodegradable down your disposal
  • DON’T put items with a high starch count down your disposal. Items containing a lot of starch expand when exposed to liquid. Think of when you boil pasta. The starches in the pasta absorb water and expand in volume. The same thing can happen to starches introduced into your drains, eventually expanding and clogging them. Items include pastas, rice, etc.
  • DON’T EVER PUT YOUR HAND DOWN INTO YOUR GARBAGE DISPOSAL TO UNJAM IT. If your garbage disposal does jam we recommend calling a professional. If you insist on servicing it yourself, unplug the unit or switch of the circuit breaker to the unit and use a flashlight and a pair of long needle noise pliers to pull out debris.

Plumbing emergency?
Call Earl’s Plumbing (530)343-0330

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Earl’s Plumbing!