The garbage disposal like one of the useful, but underestimated parts of the kitchen is often exposed to extreme usages, like disposal of fatty, starchy food and hard materials, which can damage machine enough to have problems during daily routine or to clog and cause it to stop working completely. People tend to throw almost all food inside of it, expecting that its able to grind everything you put in, even if they know that’s not good.
That kind of routine with the garbage disposal usually leads to clogging and malfunction of the unit, and you risk unnecessary costs. (Read the manufacturer instruction manual for detailed information about the use of your garbage disposal unit and how to install a garbage disposal.)
Except for the possibility to damage your garbage disposal, there is a matter of health – when you throw too much unsuitable food in it, with time, that material will rot, create a perfect environment for bacterias growth and stinky slime which odor will stink and pollute your whole kitchen.
Garbage disposals, generally, doing a great job of cleaning themselves, breaking up the food pieces effectively, and sending them down through the drain, so the chamber inside the disposal remains relatively clean.
If you don’t know in detail how a garbage disposal works, probably you should know that in the same manner that disposals help prevent odor from food scraps, it can also be the cause of it. When it is not maintained correctly, the garbage disposal can allow food parts to stay along the blade and the inner lining causing it to rot inside the unit. This will create a stinky slime which tends to build upon the hard accessible areas and will emit a foul smell from the disposal, which fortunately can be resolved with the help of citrus products and baking soda.
These are usually the undersides of the rubber baffle at the drain opening and the smooth, sloped area at the top of the grinding chamber. Cleaning every week should keep the garbage disposal unit clean and free of smells and bacterias. That’s why today, we prepared some tips and pieces of advice on how to clean your garbage disposal in the best possible way to keep your kitchen clean and protect your health.
You will need several things that every household has: sponge with abrasive side, dish detergent/soap are must, but some other are optional but very useful, citrus peel, rock salt, vinegar, and baking soda. Turn off the power to prevent the disposal from being turned on accidentally while you are cleaning, even though your hand shouldn’t be near the grinding teeth at the bottom of the chamber. Unplug the disposal from the outlet or turn off the breaker in the electric service panel.
(one of the dangerous cons of using a garbage disposal is the possibility of injuries. This is especially true when the homeowner is careless, even worse, if there is a child in the house. Educating about the use of the garbage disposal unit will prevent that kind of thing from happening. Also, investing in garbage disposal with magnetic cover could be a good option.)
How to clean the garbage disposal unit?
Apply some dish soap to an abrasive side of a sponge and scrub under the baffle thoroughly to get all into all of the folds and creases. Rinse the sponge frequently to remove all slime from the sponge. Swipe around the top of the grinding chamber and again, rinse the sponge frequently. Repeat the process until the sponge pulls up no more slime and gunk, and the surface of disposal feels clean.
Just if you clean these two key areas, your garbage disposal will probably be in great shape. But if you want to take some extra steps and freshen up the disposal and drain pipe, it will keep your garbage disposal unit in top shape and without smelly odor.
One of the most useful homemade Oldschool mixtures is baking soda and vinegar combination. With its chemical features, it will help to clean better the chamber of the garbage disposal as well as the top of the drain pipe and will keep bad smell away. Simply pour a half cup of the baking soda into the garbage disposal, then add 1/2 cup of vinegar. Place the sink plug over the drain opening. Leave the mixture of baking soda/vinegar to react and fizz up. The sink plug will trap the mixture inside of the disposal while reacting.
Wait for a few minutes, remove the plug, and flush the disposal with hot water while running the garbage disposal. (If the sink has two sides, the cleaning mixture will work best if both sides are cleaned simultaneously. Use the same amounts of the mixture in the other sink drain.)
You can pour this mixture in the garbage disposal regularly, whenever you think it will have use of it. But if the disposal is smelly, even after you used some other, industrial cleaners, you can try with some other household tricks. Pour in the mixture of water and bleach, in 2:1 ratio, with mandatory gloves on your hands and flushing with warm water after. Or you are grinding lemon (or other citrus peels) and cubes of ice in the garbage disposal.
This combination will not clean slimy areas, but citrus oil in the peel will remove/mask bad odor and will change it for the pleasant citrus smell, which will last for a while.
Today a garbage disposal unit is a must-have piece of equipment in every modern kitchen. While people think that garbage disposal has a simple task, it’s much more than that. In addition to relieving you of excess food and making it easier to wash your dishes, some models have antibacterial properties, and functionality will provide the best possible health support for your pipes and sinks. In the rest of our blog, you can read about the best garbage disposals for your money and other pieces of advice and tips for the use of garbage disposal units.