How To Properly Maintain Your Garbage Disposal

How To Properly Maintain Your Garbage Disposal

Some people think their garbage disposal is part of a magician’s act. Just take any food (or possibly other household items) you can find, stuff it all down the disposal, and – abracadabra, it disappears! Unfortunately, using a garbage disposal is a little more refined than that. In this post, we’ll discuss which things are and aren’t safe to go down your drain.


There are some foods that most people know should not be put down in the garbage disposal. This includes anything that is hard or would be difficult to chop – things that contain bones such as turkey or chicken remains.

The other major thing to avoid putting down your kitchen sink may not be so obvious: things that may harden after they go down. The best example of this is grease. Never pour grease down the drain – with or without garbage disposal! As it dries, it will harden, and lead to a sticky, gummy mess!

Other items that should not be run through the garbage disposal:

  • Any sort of oil
  • Butter or other dairy products
  • Eggshells
  • Bones
  • Celery or other tough vegetables
  • Coffee grounds
  • Grease and greasy foods
  • Pasta, including rice (it can expand in your pipes and cause problems)
  • Non-food items


Many of the items listed above cause different types of issues. For example, the stringy fibers from celery can get wrapped around the gears, rice and pasta can expand in your pipes, and coffee grounds can just accumulate without ever making it to the disposal itself.

Here are a few tips that will help keep your garbage disposal functioning:

  • Scrape excess food and bones/scraps from plates straight into the trash.
  • Use a paper towel to wipe thick, greasy foods into the trash. Things like gravy and similar foods can easily clog sinks.
  • Boil water and pour it down the sink about once a month. It will help loosen up the slime and gunk that finds its way down the drain.
  • Three or four times a year, pour some vinegar down the drain – this is good for routine maintenance as the vinegar can dissolve substances that boiling water may not.


If you do discover that your drain is stopped, or maybe the disposal just isn’t running as it should, City Plumbing can help with any of your plumbing needs! Make an appointment online or call us today at (432) 366-2401. Give us a call, and we’ll come running!

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