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What’s Up With My Garbage Disposal?

If you’ve got a garbage disposal in your kitchen, then you know just how great these nifty little devices are–you probably use it all the time for all your leftover scraps. But here’s the thing: your garbage disposal was not designed to handle every little thing that’s thrown its way, and often, doing so will lead to all sorts of problems.

Below, we have listed some of the most common issues that occur with garbage disposals–that way, you can avoid a problem altogether. All you’ve got to do is keep reading to find out more. (And of course, remember to call our team for all things plumbing in Madison, MS!)

So, What’s Troubling Your Garbage Disposal?

There are a number of things that might be wrong with your garbage disposal:

Clogs From FOG

You may have heard our warnings to never pour liquid oil, grease, or fat down your kitchen drains. Unfortunately, people often misinterpret this advice and think that it does not apply to garbage disposals because they are supposed to process food. But garbage disposals still link to a drainpipe, so when those liquids cool and solidify into a waxy substance, they can still end up clogging the pipes. They can also jam the moving parts inside the disposal.

Jams From Solid Objects 

Here’s a good rule of thumb for what should and should not go down the garbage disposal: if you can’t chew it, your garbage disposal can’t chew it either. Put food leftovers, like animal bones and popcorn kernels, into the trash can instead. In general, avoid treating the garbage disposal like it is an actual garbage can. Non-food waste products—like glass, metals, and paper—should never go down there either, or else the disposal could end up with a serious jam that will require a professional plumber to repair it.


If your disposal is an older unit, loose screws and corroded gaskets can cause it to start leaking. In some cases, a repair technician can refasten the unit, apply sealant, or replace the gaskets to stop the problem. However, if the unit is extremely old, it may be better to replace it entirely rather than make numerous repairs.

It Won’t Run 

First, make sure that the unit hasn’t become unplugged. Then check the reset switch along the bottom of the unit to see if it has popped out. If you reset this and attempt to turn the disposal on again, and it still won’t run (only producing a humming noise until the reset switch pops out again) then the flywheel is stuck. Call a plumber to help you dislodge it—don’t put your hand down into the disposal to try to loosen it.

Only a Professional…

…can handle the complex repair needs of your system. Do not trust these services to just anyone–otherwise, you could be left to deal with a whole lot of other issues. Trust us, when it comes to your plumbing, you do not want to take any risks.

To learn more about our plumbing services, contact the team at Environment Masters, Inc. today.

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