Keeping Your Garbage Disposal Clean

A garbage disposal is one of those modern conveniences most of us have become quite dependent on, here are some tips to keep your garbage disposal staying clean, smelling fresh and functioning well:


Pour a few drops of dish soap inside, run for a full minute with cold water after washing dishes. This will help clean and deodorize the unit.

Grind food waste with a good flow of cold water. This will cause grease and oils to solidify, and they can be ground into smaller pieces before reaching the trap.
Ice Cubes work great for keeping the blades sharp and the unit clean, add some rock salt to really get a good scouring action.
NEVER: Place your hands inside the unit to clean it or retrieve objects!


Once a week grind slices of lemon, lime or orange. This will help clean the blades and deodorize the unit. Use your ice cube tray to freeze white or apple cider vinegar. Grinding these will naturally kill odor causing bacteria.

Pour a good amount of baking soda into the unit and let it dwell for a few hours. Then run the garbage disposal with a stream of cold water.
NEVER: Use harsh chemicals such as bleach or drain cleaners!


Frequent use will prevent rust and corrosion, and keep parts moving. Letting objects enter the unit without grinding will cause them to harden, becoming obstructions (not to mention stink bombs!)

Cut up larger items. Put them down the garbage disposal one at a time. Don’t overstuff the unit before grinding.
Wait to until grinding is complete, turn off the garbage disposal and then let the water continue to run for 15 to 20 seconds.
NEVER: Pour grease or oil into disposal, or grind fibrous items like corn husks, aparagus or celery!

Every make and model has different specifications and performance levels, and you should always consult your manual. If these general maintenance tips are not working or you have a more serious issue, call Jerry’s Plumbing and Heating right away!

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