The methods used to fix a garbage disposal vary depending on the problem. If the disposal does not work, look for the reset button or unplug it and check the outlet for power. If it leaks, tightening the connection may solve the problem.
Garbage disposal units can have a variety of problems, many of which can be fixed without having to hire a plumber.
If the garbage disposal does not come on at all, use the steps below to troubleshoot.
- Use the reset button
- Unplug the unit
- Go to the circuit panel
Press the reset button usually located on the bottom of the unit.
Unplug the unit and test the outlet using another device.
If there is still no power, go to the circuit breaker and reset it by turning it off and back on.
If the disposal leaks, check to make sure all the connections are tight and tighten any loose connection. Replace the drain gasket or mounting screws if water leaks from these points.
For a disposal that does not grind properly, check the blades to make sure they are not broken. If one or more blades are broken, replacing the unit is usually the easiest and least expensive alternative.
If the disposal is jammed, try locating the hex hole at the bottom of the unit. Using a 1/4-inch hex wrench, move the wrench back and forth in the hole to free the impellers; this may take care of the problem. If that does not work, disconnect the power to the disposal and stick a broom handle in the disposal. Force it down on one of the blades and try to get the impeller to move back and forth, recommends HomeTips.com.