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Troubleshooting Guide: Fixing Common Garbage Disposal Issues

Caring for Home garbage Disposal

Garbage disposals are a convenient kitchen appliance, but they can encounter problems that hinder their performance. Before contacting a professional plumber, it's worthwhile to attempt some troubleshooting steps on your own. In this blog post, we'll provide you with a comprehensive guide to troubleshooting common garbage disposal issues. By following these steps, you may be able to resolve the problem without the need for professional assistance. However, if these steps don't work, don't hesitate to reach out to us at Integrity Plumbing for expert help.

Disposal Hums, but Blades Don't Spin: Possible Jam

If your garbage disposal emits a humming sound but the blades don't spin, it is likely jammed. Follow these steps to troubleshoot the issue:


  1. Ensure the disposal is turned off and unplugged to avoid any accidents.

  1. Use tongs or pliers to carefully remove any visible items causing the blockage. If available, a shop vacuum can be used to suction out debris as well.

  1. Locate the Allen wrench that came with your disposal. You will find a hole at the bottom of the unit.

  1. Insert the Allen wrench into the hole and work it back and forth to dislodge the jammed debris.

  1. With the disposal still off and unplugged, use tongs or pliers to remove any remaining blockage.

  1. Once cleared, plug in the disposal and test if the blades spin freely.

Disposal Doesn't Turn On: Possible Reset or Replacement

If your garbage disposal fails to turn on, there are a couple of possible causes.


  1. Check if the disposal is plugged in properly and that the circuit breaker has not tripped.

  2. Look for a red reset button on the side of the disposal unit. Press it to reset the disposal.

  3. If the disposal still doesn't turn on, it may be burnt out and require replacement. Contact us at Integrity Plumbing for professional assistance.

General Tip: Prevent Clogs by Proper Waste Disposal

While garbage disposals can grind up food waste, it's important to remember that certain items can still cause clogs in your plumbing system. Follow this general tip to prevent potential issues:

Always scrape food scraps into the trash before washing dishes in the sink. When food scraps do go down the drain, run plenty of water to help push the scraps all the way to the street drain.

By following the troubleshooting steps provided in this blog post, you may be able to resolve common issues with your garbage disposal on your own. However, if these steps don't solve the problem or you require professional assistance, don't hesitate to contact us at Integrity Plumbing. Our experienced team is ready to provide the necessary expertise to get your garbage disposal back up and running smoothly.


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