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Garbage Disposal Problems?

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Garbage Disposal Problems?

If your garbage disposal won’t turn on, here are a few troubleshooting steps you can try:

Check the power:

Ensure that the garbage disposal is plugged in properly and that the outlet is receiving power. Try plugging in a hair dryer, phone charger, or other device to see if the outlet is functioning. If the disposal is hard-wired (i.e., wire coming out of the floor or wall), move on to the next step.

Try resetting the disposal:

Most garbage disposals have a reset button located on the bottom or side near the bottom of the unit. Press this button to reset the disposal, listen or feel for a click/resistance, then see if it starts working again.

See if the disposal mechanism will rotate:

Manually rotate the disposal by inserting an Allen wrench (normally 3/8″ or the tool that came with the unit) into the hex-shaped hole on the bottom of the disposal unit. Turn the wrench back and forth a few times to manually rotate the disposal’s blades. This can help dislodge any stuck objects and see if the unit is seized or not.

If there is an electric hum when you turn on the disposal:

Check the disposal for blockages inside through the opening. Turn off the power to the disposal at the circuit breaker, unplug the disposal, or tape the switch in the off position. Use a flashlight to inspect inside the disposal chamber for any obvious objects that may be jamming the blades. Use tongs or pliers to remove any foreign objects. Items found can include pennies, bottle caps, tea strainers, cutlery, un-popped popcorn, metal food can lids, and more.

Check for a tripped circuit breaker:

If the disposal does not have power at the receptacle it is plugged into, or is hard-wired, check your circuit breaker panel to see if the circuit breaker for the circuit has tripped. If it has, reset the breaker then try turning on the disposal again.

Check for overheating:

If the disposal has been used excessively or has overheated, it may temporarily shut off to cool down. Wait a few minutes for it to cool down before attempting to turn it on again.

If none of these steps resolve the issue, it’s possible that there is a more serious problem with the disposal that may require professional repair or replacement. Avoid using the disposal until the issue has been resolved to prevent further damage.

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