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Garbage Disposal Repair - Delta Plumbers

Garbage Disposal Repair: Tips from Delta Plumbers

Garbage disposal is indispensable appliances in modern kitchens, efficiently breaking down food waste to prevent clogs and odors. However, like any other household appliance, they can encounter issues requiring repair or maintenance. In this guide, Delta Plumbers will delve into common problems with garbage disposals, explore repair options, and provide expert advice on when to repair or replace your unit.

Is Garbage Disposal Repair Worth it - Delta Plumbers

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Is Garbage Disposal Repair Worth it?

Determining whether it’s worth repairing a garbage disposal involves several considerations. Firstly, evaluate the extent of the issue. Minor problems like clogs, jams, or minor leaks can often be fixed with relatively low-cost repairs. However, if the unit has major mechanical or electrical issues, such as a burnt-out motor or severe damage to internal components, the cost of repair might outweigh the value gained from fixing it.

Next, consider the age of the garbage disposal. If it’s relatively new and still under warranty, repairing it could be the most cost-effective option, especially if the warranty covers parts and labor. However, if the unit is older and has already required multiple repairs in the past, it may be approaching the end of its lifespan, making replacement a more sensible long-term solution.

Factor in the cost of repairs versus the price of a new garbage disposal. If the repair costs are significantly lower than the cost of a new unit and the disposal has many years of service left, repairing it could be a good investment. On the other hand, if the repair costs are close to or exceed the price of a new disposal, it might be more economical to replace it, especially considering the potential for future repairs.

Consider the convenience and peace of mind that come with a new garbage disposal. A new unit will likely come with updated features, improved efficiency, and a warranty, reducing the likelihood of future breakdowns and the need for repairs.

Also Read: Pipe Repairs and Retrofits: Comprehensive Guide by Delta Plumbers

Can a Broken Garbage Disposal be Fixed - Delta Plumbers

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Can a Broken Garbage Disposal be Fixed?

Yes, a broken garbage disposal can often be fixed, depending on the nature and extent of the problem. Many common issues with garbage disposals, such as clogs, jams, leaks, or electrical malfunctions, can be repaired by a qualified plumber or appliance repair technician. Here are some examples of problems that can typically be fixed:

Clogs and Jams:

If the disposal is clogged or jammed, it can often be cleared by manually rotating the impellers with a disposal wrench or Allen wrench. Removing any lodged debris or foreign objects can restore proper functionality.


Leaks in the disposal or the plumbing connections can usually be repaired by tightening or replacing seals, gaskets, or plumbing components that are damaged or worn out.

Electrical Issues:

If the disposal is not turning on or making unusual sounds, there may be electrical issues such as a tripped breaker, a faulty switch, or a wiring problem. These issues can be diagnosed and repaired by a qualified electrician or appliance repair technician.

Mechanical Problems:

Internal mechanical components such as the motor, impellers, or flywheel may become damaged or worn out over time. In some cases, these components can be repaired or replaced, although more severe damage may require the replacement of the entire unit.

Resetting the Disposal:

Sometimes, a malfunctioning garbage disposal can be fixed simply by resetting it. Most disposals have a reset button located on the bottom of the unit that can be pressed to reset the motor and electrical components.

However, it’s essential to note that the repairability of a broken garbage disposal depends on the specific problem and the condition of the unit. In some cases, particularly if the disposal is old, severely damaged, or has recurring issues, it may be more cost-effective to replace it rather than attempt repairs. Consulting with a professional plumber from Delta Plumbers can help assess the situation and determine the best course of action.

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How to Fix a Garbage Disposal That Just Hums - Delta Plumbers

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How to Fix a Garbage Disposal That Just Hums?

When a garbage disposal just hums but doesn’t grind or dispose of food waste, it typically indicates that the motor is running but the impellers are stuck or jammed. Here’s how to fix a garbage disposal that is humming:

Turn Off the Power:

Before attempting any repairs, ensure the disposal is switched off at the electrical panel or by unplugging it from the power source. Safety first!

Identify the Cause: Use a flashlight to inspect the disposal chamber. Look for any foreign objects, such as utensils, bones, or food debris, that may be causing the jam.

Use a Hex Key or Disposal Wrench:

Most garbage disposals come with a hex key or disposal wrench that fits into the bottom center of the disposal. Insert the wrench into the hex-shaped hole and manually rotate it back and forth. This action helps to dislodge any stuck impellers or debris.

Rotate the Flywheel:

If the disposal has a flywheel on top, use a wooden spoon or similar tool to rotate it manually. This may help to free up any obstruction that is preventing the impellers from turning.

Check the Reset Button:

Some disposals have a reset button located on the bottom of the unit. Press the reset button to reset the motor and electrical components. This may resolve the issue if the motor has overheated or tripped a safety switch.

Clear the Drain Line:

If the disposal is still humming after attempting the above steps, check the drain line for clogs or obstructions. Use a plumber’s snake or auger to clear any blockages in the drain pipe connected to the disposal.

Test the Disposal:

After attempting to fix the jam, restore power to the disposal and turn it on. Run cold water down the drain and switch on the disposal to see if it operates smoothly. If the humming persists, repeat the steps or consult a professional plumber for further assistance.

Remember, safety is paramount when working with electrical appliances. If you’re unsure about how to proceed or if the problem persists, it’s best to contact a qualified plumber from Delta Plumbers to diagnose and repair the issue.

Also Read: Sink Repair and Replacement: Your Complete Guide

What is the Life Expectancy of a Garbage Disposal - Delta Plumbers

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What is the Life Expectancy of a Garbage Disposal?

The life expectancy of a garbage disposal can vary depending on several factors, including usage frequency, maintenance practices, and the quality of the disposal unit itself. On average, a well-maintained garbage disposal can last anywhere from 8 to 15 years. Here are some factors that can affect the lifespan of garbage disposal:

Quality of Materials:

Higher-quality garbage disposals made from durable materials such as stainless steel tend to have a longer lifespan compared to cheaper models with plastic components.

Usage Patterns:

Garbage disposals that are used frequently and for heavy-duty tasks may wear out faster than those used sparingly for light food waste. Excessive use or overloading the disposal can strain the motor and components, leading to premature failure.


Regular maintenance, such as cleaning the disposal and flushing it with water, can help prolong its lifespan. Avoiding putting non-food items, fibrous foods, grease, or hard objects down the disposal can prevent damage and clogs.

Installation Quality:

Proper installation by a qualified plumber ensures that the garbage disposal is correctly aligned, connected, and secured. Poor installation can lead to leaks, electrical issues, and premature wear.

Water Quality:

Hard water with high mineral content can cause limescale buildup inside the disposal, which may affect its performance and lifespan over time. Using a water softener can help mitigate this issue.

Manufacturer Warranty:

Some garbage disposals come with a manufacturer’s warranty that covers defects and malfunctions for a specified period. Be sure to register your disposal and follow any maintenance requirements outlined in the warranty to ensure coverage.

While the average lifespan of garbage disposal falls within the 8 to 15-year range, individual experiences may vary. Proper care, regular maintenance, and prompt repairs can help maximize the lifespan of your garbage disposal and ensure efficient operation for years to come. If you’re experiencing issues with your garbage disposal, it’s best to consult a professional plumber from Delta Plumbers for expert advice and repairs.

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What is the Main Problem of Garbage Disposal - Delta Plumbers

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What is the Main Problem of Garbage Disposal?

The main problems that commonly affect garbage disposals include:


One of the most common issues with garbage disposals is clogging, usually caused by putting inappropriate items down the disposal or by a buildup of food particles, grease, or fibrous materials. Clogs can lead to slow drainage, foul odors, and even complete blockages.


Garbage disposals can become jammed when foreign objects or large food particles get stuck between the shredder ring and the impellers. This can prevent the disposal from operating properly and may cause it to emit a humming noise when turned on.


Leaks can occur in garbage disposals due to loose connections, damaged seals, or cracks in the disposal unit itself. Leaking can lead to water damage under the sink and surrounding areas if not addressed promptly.


Excessive use or overloading of the garbage disposal can cause the motor to overheat, leading to a shutdown or tripped circuit breaker. Overheating may occur if the disposal is run for extended periods without allowing it to cool down between uses.

Electrical Issues:

Faulty wiring, a tripped circuit breaker, or a malfunctioning switch can cause electrical problems with the garbage disposal, resulting in it not turning on or functioning erratically.

Worn Components:

Over time, the blades, impellers, and other internal components of the garbage disposal may wear out or become dull, reducing the unit’s effectiveness in grinding food waste.


Bacteria and food particles can accumulate inside the garbage disposal, leading to foul odors emanating from the sink drain. Insufficient cleaning and maintenance can exacerbate this problem.

Addressing these issues promptly and properly maintaining your garbage disposal can help prevent more significant problems and extend its lifespan. If you encounter persistent issues with your garbage disposal, it’s best to seek assistance from a professional plumber like Delta Plumbers to diagnose and resolve the problem effectively.


With proper care and maintenance, a garbage disposal can provide years of reliable service in your kitchen. However, when problems arise, it’s essential to address them promptly to avoid further damage and inconvenience. By following the guidance provided by Delta Plumbers in this comprehensive guide to garbage disposal repair, you can troubleshoot issues effectively and make informed decisions about repair or replacement options.