Man cleaning his home's garbage disposal using special tools.

Tips for Keeping Your Garbage Disposal Maintained and Working Efficiently

The holiday season is upon us and with it comes a flurry of festivities and feasting. The kitchen is often the heart of the home during this time, but all the extra cooking and entertaining can put a strain on your kitchen plumbing, particularly your garbage disposal.

Proper maintenance of your garbage disposal is key to keeping it running efficiently and avoiding costly repairs or kitchen disasters. Here are some helpful tips for keeping your garbage disposal maintained and working efficiently.

Proven Cleaning Tips for a Sparkling, Odor-Free Kitchen

To keep your garbage disposal fresh, it’s important to regularly clean and maintain it. One of the easiest ways to do this is to run the disposal with hot water and dish soap every few days. This will help to remove any built-up grime and food particles. Additionally, you can use a brush or toothbrush to scrub the blades and inner walls of the disposal to remove any stubborn debris.

To help prevent bad smells, you can also grind up lemon or orange peels in the disposal. The citric acid in the peels will help to break down any lingering food particles and leave a fresh scent. Additionally, you can sprinkle some baking soda into the disposal and then run it with hot water to help deodorize it.

It’s also important to avoid putting certain things down the disposal, such as grease, oil, and fibrous materials like celery, which can get caught in the blades and cause clogs. By regularly cleaning and maintaining your garbage disposal, you can help keep it fresh and prevent bad odors.


To deodorize your garbage disposal after cleaning, there are a few simple steps to follow. First, pour a cup of baking soda down the disposal and let it sit for a few minutes to absorb any odors. Next, turn on the disposal and run cold water to rinse away the baking soda.

You can also use a mixture of equal parts white vinegar and water to deodorize the disposal. Pour the mixture down the disposal and let it sit for a few minutes before turning on the disposal and running cold water to rinse it away.

To freshen up the disposal and keep it smelling clean, you can also grind up lemon or orange peels in the disposal. This will naturally deodorize and freshen the disposal. Just be sure to run plenty of water down the disposal after grinding up the peels to prevent any clogs.

Easy Fixes to Solve Common Garbage Disposal Problems Listen for Noises

If your garbage disposal is making strange noises, it may be a sign that something is wrong. A humming noise can indicate that something is stuck in the disposal. Meanwhile, a grinding noise can mean that the blades are damaged or not spinning properly. In either case, it’s important to turn off the disposal and investigate the problem before using it again.

Jammed Disposal

If your garbage disposal is jammed, it may be possible to fix the problem yourself. First, turn off the power to the disposal and use a flashlight to look inside for any visible debris. If you see something stuck in the blades, use a pair of tongs or pliers to carefully remove it. You can also try using a disposal wrench or Allen wrench to manually spin the blades and loosen any stuck-on food.

Professional Repair

Are you unable to fix the problem yourself? Do you notice other signs that your garbage disposal needs attention? Then it’s time to call in a professional. A licensed plumber will have the tools and expertise to diagnose and repair any issues with your garbage disposal, ensuring that it continues to function properly and efficiently.

Warning Signs Your Garbage Disposal Needs Attention Strange Noises

As mentioned above, strange noises can be a sign that something is wrong with your garbage disposal. If you hear humming, grinding, or other unusual noises, it’s important to turn off the disposal and investigate the problem.


Another sign that your garbage disposal may need attention is if you notice any leaks. A small amount of water around the base of the disposal is normal, but excessive leaking could indicate a problem with the seals or gasket.

Slow Draining

If your sink is draining slowly, it could be a sign that your garbage disposal is clogged or not functioning properly. A variety of factors can cause this, including stuck-on food, debris, as well as damage to the blades.

Safety First: Avoid These Dangerous Mistakes

Turn Off the Power to the Disposal Before Servicing

Always remember to turn off the power to the garbage disposal before servicing it. This will prevent the unit from turning on accidentally and help to avoid accidents or injuries.

Never Put Your Hands in the Disposal

It may be tempting to use your hands to try and remove something from the disposal, but this is extremely dangerous. The blades in a garbage disposal are sharp and can cause serious injuries if you come into contact with them. Always use tongs, pliers, or a disposal wrench to remove any stuck-on food or debris.

Avoid Putting Certain Items Down the Disposal

Some items should never be put down the garbage disposal, as they can damage the blades or cause other problems. These items include fibrous foods like celery, potato peels, and corn husks, as well as hard items like bones, fruit pits, and grease.

ProService Mechanical — Your 24/7 Plumbing & HVAC Specialists

Proper maintenance can help to avoid costly repairs and keep your kitchen plumbing and garbage disposal running smoothly. However, tackling garbage disposal issues on your own can be difficult without the right knowledge and tools. That’s why it’s important to contact a professional plumber for help.

At ProService Mechanical, our team of expert plumbing technicians is available 24/7 to provide you with prompt and reliable garbage disposal repairs. From minor clogs to major drainage problems, we have the experience and skill to handle it all. We have highly trained and certified technicians, equipped with the most advanced tools in the industry.

If you need assistance with your garbage disposal or any other plumbing issues, don’t hesitate to contact Pro Service Mechanical as soon as possible.