One common plumbing and drain problem we see is the infamous clogged garbage disposal. So, we compiled this list of 5 items you should avoid sticking down the sink. Some of them may seem obvious, and we clearly cannot cover everything that could do your disposal harm, but this list should help clarify a couple of common things that we see mucking up customers’ machines.
- Corn husks
With summer upon us, you may find yourself enjoying some fresh ears of corn during a backyard barbeque. Do not make the mistake of tossing the husks into your disposal unit, or you will be in for some trouble.
- Fruit skins and cores
Fruit is commonly cut or peeled near the sink, which can lead to the accidental spilling of the skins or cores into your drain. Try to place the cutting board several feet away from the sink if possible or block the drain while preparing your favorite fruits. We have also seen people try to toss some thinner skins like that of a kiwi down into the disposal in the hopes that it will grind up, but this is something we do not recommend.
Most folks are probably aware that cooking oils or bacon grease (and other oily substances) should not be dumped down the drain. However, it is still one of the most common problems that we come across. After you fry up that delicious, greasy food collect the oils in a dish and dispose of it separately. You may even be able to save and reuse the oil depending on how dirty it becomes during your first cooking attempt (and what you were preparing). When you are ready to get rid of it, place it in a sealable container and escort it to your local landfill.
- Egg shells
When you are cracking eggs, it may seem simple to toss the empty shells into the sink. They are relatively weak and could be chopped up by a properly working disposal unit, however, too many of them could lead to issues. Egg shells should be discarded with your normal trash to avoid this mistake.
- Certain vegetables
Believe it or not, many of your favorite veggies could cause your disposal blades to stick. Anything high in starch (potatoes, asparagus, kale, and artichokes to name a few) are made of tough fibers that make them difficult to grind up. Those fibers can get tangled up in the blade, which is a nightmare for the homeowner.
If you notice that your home’s garbage disposal is clogged, you may be able to fix it with a simple Allen wrench (hex key) depending on what type of unit you have. If you have the time and can track down your owner’s manual, the manufacturer may have instructions about how to fix minor clogs. You should NEVER stick your fingers down into the drain for risk of getting injured by the sharp blades.
If you are unsure about how to safely fix this problem yourself, or simply would prefer the convenience of having it done professionally, contact Precision Plumbing Heating Cooling & Electric immediately and one of our trained technicians will come out and take care of it for you. We are here to help around the clock