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Garbage Disposals: 3 Ways You’re Doing It Wrong!

sunny-plumberIf you are not using a garbage disposal in Tucson—why not? Garbage disposals are helpful. They’re convenient. They offer a number of benefits. They’re not 100% reliable, though. Nothing really is. And you know what? Your garbage disposal is going to be far less than 100% reliable if you’re not using it right. When used properly, garbage disposals are going to be largely problem-free. When used improperly, you’ll want to toss the disposal itself into the garbage!

No one misuses their garbage disposal on purpose, obviously. Just because you don’t mean to do so doesn’t mean that you’re not doing so, though. You simply may not realize what you’re doing. Don’t find out the hard way that you’ve been doing it wrong. Take the information in this post, and keep it in mind. That way, the chances of us visiting your home to fix your disposal are greatly reduced. Not that we don’t love seeing our customers, of course!

1. You’re Not Running the Water

Your garbage disposal isn’t a blender. What does this mean? Well, you can’t use it to make a smoothie. But you also need to understand that it’s grinding food waste, not chopping it up with blades.  The grinder plates of the garbage disposal basically just mash everything you put down there up into a paste. At least, that’s the idea.

To keep things moving through the disposal, and to help turn that ground-up stuff into a sludge that can actually flush through your drain, you need water. And you need water the whole time. Not a couple of bursts. Turn the water on. Turn the disposal on. Let it do its thing. Turn the disposal off. Then turn the water off. Stick to that order and you’ll be good.

2. You’re Disposing of Starchy/Fibrous Materials

If you have leftover pasta, beans, or scraps of foods like celery or corn husks—head to the trash barrel. Garbage disposals are convenient, but they’re not convenient enough to handle absolutely everything that you can possibly dump down them. So why are these materials on the no-disposal list?

Starchy foods like pasta and beans absorb water. You literally have to cook them in boiling water, right? That’s because they absorb water and soften up. And putting them down the disposal allows them to absorb more, swell more, and cause clogs! As for very fibrous foods, they can get wrapped up in the disposal mechanism and cause excessive strain.

3. You’re Making Things FOGgy

What the heck does that mean? We’re not talking about literal fog.  We’re talking about Fats, Oil, and Grease: FOG. If you put hot, liquid fats,  oil, or grease down your drains, garbage disposal or not,  you’re going to be in trouble.

These liquids will congeal as they cool down in your drains. When that happens, they form clogs. Even if the FOG itself isn’t enough to completely clog a drain, it will cause a sticky situation that can really trap other scraps going down the drain.

Schedule your plumbing services with The Sunny Plumber Tucson. Bright and Shiny and Won’t Show Our Hiney.

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