There is nothing worse than walking into the kitchen and being overcome by a horrible smell. We throw out the garbage, investigate the refrigerator, and even look between the spaces between the stove and the counter for dropped spoiled food. Yet the horrible odor is actually coming from the garbage disposal.
Garbage disposals usually are great at taking care of small particles of food that may wash down the sing, but over time, food particles begin to stick to the places inside the grinding chamber such as under the baffle and along the sloped area.
Cleaning a garbage disposal is not a long or involved process. In addition, many of the cleaning items should be already available in your home. We’ve developed this simple guide to help you clean out the garbage disposal to make your kitchen smell fresh and pleasant. Items that you will need include:
- Dishwashing soap or vinegar
- Kitchen sponge or toothbrush
You can also use ice, baking soda, rock salt, a mild bleach solution or even citrus peels to clean out the disposal.
Step 1: Wet and Soak
If you haven’t used the garbage disposal recently, you’ll want to get all the leftover food particles wet to make it easier to clean off. Fill the sink with water and add a small amount of dishwashing soap or vinegar. Then drain the sink while turning on the garbage disposal to get the vinegar or dishwashing soap into all the tight spaces inside.
Step 2: Power Off
Never leave the garbage disposal on while performing the cleaning. It can take only one accidental flipping of the power switch to cause a serious injury. Make sure it is turned off by pulling out the plug or flipping the breaker to that portion of the house.
Step 3: Baffle Cleaning
Using the toothbrush or sponge with some dishwashing liquid, you want to scrub around and under the baffle. Make sure to get all the creases and crevices.
Step 4: Grinding Chamber Cleaning
Use the sponge to clean the top of the grinding area as you’ll pull up a lot of gunk. Keep cleaning until it is all gone. Then plug in the disposal unit.
Step 5: Cleaning and Deodorizing the Grinder System
Now is the time to use the alternate cleaning items to get to the places inside the grinder that cannot be reached. Toss in the ice or rock salt and turn on the disposal as these abrasives will work to clean off the particles lining the pipes and grinding chamber. Use the vinegar, mild bleach solution or citrus peels to freshen up the appliance and get rid of really bad odors.
Developing a cleaning schedule based on your usage habits can help keep the garbage disposal operating at optimal levels. If you experience a problem with the garbage disposal, reach out to the professionals at J.W. Freeman Plumbing. We can help install, repair and replace your appliances.