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  • Writer's pictureCurtis Stake

Garbage Disposal 101: Dos, Don'ts, and How to Choose the Right One

Food items in a kitchen sink going down a garbage disposal.

While garbage disposals are an incredibly handy kitchen appliance, without the proper care, they can actually cause more problems and wreak havoc on your plumbing system. Here are some do's and don'ts of how to use your garbage disposal, along with some information about the different types of disposals.


Dos and Don'ts for Disposal Care:


  1. Use Plenty of Water:  Always run cold water when using the disposal and after to help flush food particles through the system.

  2. Clean with Ice Cubes:  Periodically grind ice cubes in the disposal to clean the blades and remove any built-up residue.

  3. Grind Citrus Peels:  Grinding lemon or orange peels can help freshen up the disposal and leave a pleasant scent.

  4. Cut Large Items into Smaller Pieces:  This helps prevent clogs and ensures that the disposal can handle the waste more effectively.


  1. Dump Grease or Oil:  These can solidify in your pipes and lead to clogs.

  2. Dump Coffee Grounds:  They tend to accumulate and can cause blockages over time.

  3. No Eggshells:  They don't sharpen the blades and can contribute to clogs.

  4. Avoid Fibrous Vegetables:  Items like celery, onion skins, and corn husks can tangle around the blades and cause jams.

  5. Skip Pasta and Rice:  Pasta and rice products when grinded and mixed with water create a cement like paste which sticking to the inner walls of pipes much like grease and oils

  6. Avoid Bones and Hard Pits:  They can damage the disposal blades or motor.


Choosing the Right Garbage Disposal:

Set of various garbage disposals

When it comes to selecting a garbage disposal, there are several factors to consider:

  1. Motor Size: Disposals typically range from 1/3 to 1 1/4 horsepower. The more powerful the motor, the more capable it is of handling tough scraps.

  2. Grinding Chamber Material: Stainless steel chambers are more durable and resistant to corrosion.

  3. Noise Level: Different models of garbage disposals come with varying levels of insulation, which reduce the noise output of the disposal.

  4. Warranty: Generally speaking, the higher grade of garbage disposal that you buy, the longer the warranty is going to be for the product.

Taking proper care of your garbage disposal is essential for its longevity and performance. By following these tips, you can keep your disposal running smoothly and avoid common issues. If you're in the market for a new disposal or have any questions about maintenance, feel free to reach out to us. Stake Plumbing and Heating offers a variety of options and can help you find the perfect solution for your home!


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