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Old 01-15-2007, 06:41 PM  
todd_k
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Default garbage disposal keeps clogging

I don't think my garbage disposal is grinding up the food enough. Twice in 1 month I have had clogs in the sink. My sink is split so the left is the disposal and the right in the regular plain old drain. The clog is in the pipe that connects to the left drain to the main drain. I take the pipe apart and pull out food that isn't really ground up.
I'm not putting stuff down there that shouldn't be down there, just lettuce, cucumber skins, etc. No bones or anything like that. When I had the pipe taken apart, I made sure there wasn't any buildup inside the pipe, it was just food that clogged things up.

How can I improve the grinding of the disposal OR how do I prevent future clogs?



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Old 01-16-2007, 11:18 AM  
glennjanie
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Hey Todd:
A few things that will help are:
Feed the food to the disposal slower.
Run lots of water with it.
Never put potato skins in the disposal; they have a way of plastering it.
Check to see if the sink drain has a vent on it; that could mean all the difference.
Try using the "plumber's friend" a plunger instead of taking the drain apart; its much easier to work with. Just make sure you block the other drain while you plunge the one. Disposals usually have a plastic plug you can insert to block it, someone else to hold the plug in place is a big help too. Caution, warn the helper that you may both get wet, it eases the temper later.
Glenn



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Old 01-16-2007, 06:00 PM  
todd_k
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Originally Posted by glennjanie View Post
Hey Todd:
A few things that will help are:
Feed the food to the disposal slower.
Run lots of water with it.
Never put potato skins in the disposal; they have a way of plastering it.
Check to see if the sink drain has a vent on it; that could mean all the difference.
Try using the "plumber's friend" a plunger instead of taking the drain apart; its much easier to work with. Just make sure you block the other drain while you plunge the one. Disposals usually have a plastic plug you can insert to block it, someone else to hold the plug in place is a big help too. Caution, warn the helper that you may both get wet, it eases the temper later.
Glenn
thanks Glenn. I do feed the disposal slowly and I do run water when running the disposal. I also have tried the plunger, it worked once but not the second time.
What do you mean by a vent in the sink drain?
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Old 01-17-2007, 11:42 AM  
glennjanie
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Hello Todd:
Where the sink drain enters the wall, there should be a tee. This tee will allow the drain to go down and the top of it will compensate for the air movement, which is positive pressure at times and negative pressure (vacum) at other times. It also allows foul odors to go out above the roof.

You may not be able to see what is in the wall but you can go outside or into the attic to see if a 1-1/2" pipe comes up from the area of the sink; it may run straight out the roof or it may extend across the attic to connect in with another vent.

If there is no vent on the drain it will usually do a lot of gurgeling, bubbling and have a lot of blockage.
Glenn

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Old 01-18-2007, 09:08 PM  
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Originally Posted by todd_k View Post
I take the pipe apart and pull out food that isn't really ground up.
A sure sign that some of the grinding elements have corroded and been beaten away, leaving wide gaps for food chunks to pass through
You may be able to see this by looking down into the grinding chamber with a flashlight
Wear is most likely at the edge of the turntable, adjacent to the swivel lugs.
In a new disposal there is almost no clearance (just a hair's-breadth) between the edge of the turntable and the wall of the grinding-chamber.

Time for a new disposal, this time one with stainless-steel grinding elements
.
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Old 05-10-2009, 12:00 AM  
Ace28
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Throw whatever scraps you can in the trash, even though you have a "garbage" disposal, it is still a drain line.

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Old 05-10-2009, 10:58 PM  
Redwood
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Let me guess...
An Insinkerator Badger 1 or 5 kind of a blueish grey color...
Time for a new one!

May I suggest a new one picked from the Insinkerator Evolution line....

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Old 05-11-2009, 08:14 AM  
handyguys
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I agree with Redwood - I have had the issue as well. Feeding slowly and running a lot of water will help mitigate the issue. I never have a clog, it seems its my wife only. My disposer is the builders special. A new decent one shouldn't have the issues.

This was discussed on our episode #53 of The Handyguys Podcast at
http://www.handyguyspodcast.com/317/episode-53-mowers-drills-garbage-disposals

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Old 05-11-2009, 08:57 AM  
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I was told that bones help keep the blades clean and sharp. I put them down there all the time. It's kind of cool to hear that thing eating them up like that. Little pieces of bone flying out of the drain opening now and then, the sink shakes a little every now and then. What a rush.

I can tell you one thing from experience. Even worse than potato skins. Don't under any circumstances put corn cobs or celery in one. Palm tree trunks are bad for them too.

bob...

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Old 05-11-2009, 06:26 PM  
Redwood
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Take a look at the Insinkerator Evolution garbage disposer line here...

InSinkErator - Garbage Disposers, Garbage Disposals, Instant Hot Water Dispensers



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