Garbage Disposal Issues that Need Professional Attention
Like any mechanical device, a garbage disposal incurs wear and tear. Often, they’re subject to abuse as well, as many people attempt to grind certain leftovers that don’t belong in a disposal in the first place. Disposals combine powerful motors, sharp blades and electrical current. When garbage disposal malfunctions occur, diagnosis and repair is strictly a matter for a qualified professional. Here are some common signs that your unit needs professional attention:
Disposal Doesn’t Run
If the garbage disposal doesn’t activate when you flip the switch—and there’s no humming sound, either—there are only two alternatives. One is that the circuit breaker in your electrical panel or the overload protection switch inside the disposal itself have tripped, probably because of a severe jam or an internal electrical malfunction. The other is that the disposal motor has burned out entirely. Neither is a fix-it job for an amateur. Call a qualified plumber.
Disposal Makes Humming Sound But Doesn’t Grind
That’s the trademark sound of a garbage disposal jam. Turn off the switch and keep your hands out of the disposal—even a powered-down unit is dangerous as it contains very sharp blades. You’ve got just one DIY option: Insert the supplied Allen wrench into the crank socket on the bottom of the unit and try to rotate it both clockwise and counterclockwise. If you feel the jam release, try turning on the power again and flush the unit out with cold water while it runs. If the jam doesn’t clear, call a plumber.
Over time, vibration may trigger small water leaks. Usually, they occur at the waste pipe connection on the side of the disposal or the sink flange that attaches the unit to the sink. Both typically require removal of the plumbing and/or the garbage disposal itself. That’s a job for a professional.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues – especially HVAC and plumbing issues – so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.
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