4 Signs Your Garbage Disposal Is Dying

Many modern kitchens have a garbage disposal unit attached to the drain of the sink. Garbage disposal is designed to grind food waste to make it easier for them to go down the drain. This is why having one in a kitchen makes it easier for homeowners to dispose of food leftovers and other materials that would otherwise rot and leave unpleasant odors in the kitchen. 

Just like other kitchen appliances, garbage disposals require regular maintenance to perform properly. However, any unit can experience malfunctions as a result of repeated use, which can wear it down. In case of malfunctions and other issues, homeowners would often require professional services for repairs or replacements.

As garbage disposals are widely used anywhere, there are also many companies that provide these types of services. For instance, there are companies that offer garbage disposal installation services in Chantilly as well as repair and maintenance services.

Many homeowners would want to be able to detect any signs of problems in their garbage disposal so that they can avoid any damages or prevent it from getting worse. If you’re wondering what are the common signs that your garbage disposal unit is malfunctioning or starting to breakdown, have a look at the following points:

Frequent clogging

Constantly clogging is usually caused by either having dull shredders or grinders in your disposal unit, as well as constant overloading. When it comes to the quality of the shredders that grind the waste, they might become dull over time especially if the garbage disposal has been in use for a long period. The life expectancy of each unit is usually up to 10 years. In this case, replacement may be an option. 

On the other hand, overloading may be caused by an undersized disposal unit. In this case, you might want to double-check if the appliance you’re using is the proper size for your home. For instance, if you have a two-person household, you’ll typically need a disposal unit with a 0.5 HP (horsepower) motor. For households with five to eight occupants, experts recommend at least 1 HP motor for the garbage disposal. Motors with higher horsepower are recommended for bigger households to be able to handle the amount of food waste produced. 


If you notice that your garbage disposal is taking too long to grind down food waste, it could be a sign that the unit is worn-out and needs to be replaced. This could mean that the blades have become too dull to effectively grind the waste or the motor has gotten too weak to perform its function.


Garbage disposals can leak from a different location, including the dishwater hose, drainpipe, and sink flange. These leaks are usually caused by cracking or tearing in some areas, or they could be caused by some of the parts wearing out over time. In case of leaks, you may have to find out where the damage is located and see if any manual adjustments or minor repairs could be made. However, in many cases, professional services may be required to stop the leaking. 

Unusual noises

If you notice any unusual noise coming from your garbage disposal, check to see if the motor is churning or not. This is because in some cases, the unit has power running which makes the humming sound, but it isn’t moving because of a faulty motor. This usually means that the unit needs to be replaced, as repairing a faulty one would cost almost the same. 

How to properly use garbage disposal

As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. When it comes to caring for your garbage disposal unit, it’ll be helpful to let everyone in your household know how to use it properly so that the food waste is properly disposed of and the appliance is utilized appropriately. 

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when using your garbage disposal unit:

  • Use the garbage disposal with running water to prevent clogging.
  • Use cold water to solidify any oil or fat so that it can be grind and mixed with other food materials as they go down the drain. 
  • Avoid overloading the disposal and break up large pieces of food waste into smaller pieces to help the grinding process.
  • Fully grind all food wastes to avoid buildups and damages. 
  • Avoid grinding items that could potentially clog and damage the disposal unit such as grease, liquid fats, potato peels, and large meat bones. 


As with any home appliance, proper use and maintenance are key to prolonging the life of your garbage disposal. Given this, it’s essential to check and clean it regularly to help prevent buildup, clogging, and any other conditions that could cause malfunction. Also, it’s important to learn how to use the garbage disposal properly to avoid overworking its systems. 

Reveal Homestyle

Reveal Homestyle is a home improvement blog. It aims to share information and ideas to make your home a heaven on earth. Read about home improvement and maintenance.

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