It smells, it drains. It’s your garbage disposal.
It’s extremely helpful in the kitchen and doesn’t often receive the praise it deserves. It rids your sink of drainage issues and leftover food — and has even been known to catch a spoon or two. Garbage disposals take on a lot and are rarely treated with love.
For a healthy disposal, you’ll want to run it regularly and keep it clean. When in use, always combine with cold running water. This will solidify any grease and oils, making them easier to grind and flush away.
Your garbage disposal is tough. But how much can it really handle? We encourage you to double-check what’s going down the drain by avoiding these 13 garbage disposal don’ts.
Don’t put these down your garbage disposal.
1. Fruit Pits - These are never a good idea to put down the drain, opt for the trash.
2. Bones - Large or small, avoid it at all cost.
3. Banana Peels - You’d think it’d be alright since it’s fruit, but they’re super fibrous. The same goes for corn husks, toss them in the compost.
4. Nuts - Hate grinding noises? Think of nut butter being in your pipes, it’s not pretty.
5. Grease - We recommend not pouring anything super fatty down the drain. If you have to do so, run with hot water to avoid clogging.
6. Vegetable Skins - Avoid disposing skins of onions, artichokes and other veggies.
7. Potato Peels - They’re super tough, not to mention starchy. Opt for the trash.
8. Pasta and Rice - People toss these in often. Pasta and rice actually expand in your pipes after it’s been shredded. Avoid it to prevent clogging later.
Definitely don’t put these down your garbage disposal.
9. Cigarette Butts - Most likely, you haven’t seen someone do this since college (and hopefully you didn’t witness this back then). Shredding chemicals is never a good idea.
10. Shells - Shells (especially from seafood) are tough. Not to mention, they’ll leave a terrible scent behind.
11. Broken Glass - This may seem like a given, but don’t let broken glass into your garbage disposal. It’ll damage the internal parts quickly.
It’s okay-ish to put these down your garbage disposal.
Aside from leftover meat, veggie and fruit scraps, there are a few things that are actually okay down your drain (contrary to popular belief).
12. Citrus Rinds - Citrus like oranges and lemons can naturally clean your disposal, making it smell amazingly fresh.
13. Coffee Grounds - There’s a bit of debate on this item, but we’re here to say that small amounts are okay to put down the drain. It’s large amounts you want to avoid due to the natural oils found in the grounds.
The final verdict?
Use common sense and refer to this guide when you’re stumped. By paying attention to what you’re putting down the drain, you can extend the life of your garbage disposal while saving your pipes from unwanted clogs. For more garage disposal tips or to learn more about our plumbing services, feel free to reach out to our BL3 team.