Garbage disposals may seem invincible, but they really aren’t. In fact, they’re pretty easy to break if you subject them to the wrong materials. If you want to keep your garbage disposal operating as long as possible, there are a few things that you should make sure you never put into it. Have a look at the following list of things that you should keep out of your garbage disposal if you want to get the most out of it.
This is probably the number one thing that homeowners put into their disposals that they really shouldn’t. FOG (fats, oils, and grease) are commonly used in cooking, and are often poured into the drain after use. The problem with doing this is that while the FOG is liquid during cooking, it congeals into a viscous sludge as it cools. This can gum up the impeller blades in the disposal, and restrict the flow of water into the drain line. Instead of pouring FOG into the disposal after you’re done with it, you should throw it away instead.
Ice, Bones, Fruit Pits
It should go without saying that your disposal will have some difficulty with ultra-hard materials like bones and fruit pits. These kinds of materials can clog the disposal, and even if they don’t they have a chance of actually breaking the blades in the system. Replacing an impeller because the blades are broken is an unnecessary expense that you can avoid by just not putting any of these materials into the disposal.
The blades in the disposal aren’t actually sharp. They don’t cut the waste they come into contact with so much as chop it with brute force. What this means is that they can be tangled up fairly easily by fibrous materials like celery and corn husks. If you’re cooking with anything with really tough fibers, it’s best to keep it out of the garbage disposal just to be safe.
Eggshells and Coffee Grounds
It’s a common myth that putting eggshells and coffee grounds down the disposal and running it will help clean it. What they actually do, though, is stick to the walls of the disposal and clog it over time. If you do this on a regular basis, you will almost certainly need to call a professional at some point to clean out your disposal for you. Better to just throw this stuff in the trash, and pour a bit of white vinegar down the disposal if you want to clean it out every once in a while.
Remember that it’s also a good idea to have a professional check out your disposal for you every once in a while if you want to keep it running properly. We recommend having your disposal inspected every year or two, to make sure that it’s in top condition.
Pipeworks Inc. offers a full range of garbage disposal services in Lexington, IL. If you need help with your garbage disposal, contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our expert plumbers.