How to Fix a Leaky Garbage Disposal

Whether your garbage disposal is leaking from the top, the side, or the bottom, it needs to be an immediate priority to resolve the issue, before any permanent or costly damages can occur. Continue below to learn why your garbage disposal is leaking, and what you can do to fix the problem, correctly and cost-effectively.

Indianapolis Garbage Disposal Repair 317-784-1870

Top Causes of Garbage Disposal Leaks

There are many reasons why garbage disposals leak, from incompatible plumbing fittings to improper installation. But the top causes of a leaking garbage disposal are generally loose sink flanges, damaged or detached drain line connections, and damaged internal seals. Be sure to routinely clean and service your garbage disposal by a licensed and certified and trusted plumber to prevent major issues such as these. More importantly, if you notice garbage disposal leakage, act fast, immediately in fact, because small water leak can quickly turn into a disaster.

Garbage Disposals That Leak from the Top

The most common cause for a garbage disposal that leaks from the top is a loose sink flange. Fortunately, this is a minor and quick fix, so long as you know what you are doing, or you hire a professional to do it for you. A sink flange is a component that connects the garbage disposal to the sink. Sometimes, the plumbers’ putty can wear away, causing the flange to become loose. To fix, loosen the bolts, add some more plumbers’ putty around the seal of the sink flange, and then tighten the bolts back up. If you see that there is plenty of putty, simply check that the bolts are tight enough, as this could be the overall cause of the loose flange.

Garbage Disposals That Leak from the Bottom

A damaged, cracked, or worn out internal seal is the common cause of a bottom-leaking garbage disposal. In this case, it means that the garbage disposal is the component that needs repaired. If the water is leaking from a crack on the outside of the garbage disposal, it cannot be repaired, and instead, the entire unit must be replaced. Sometimes, the disposal unit gets shifted around as a result of storing items underneath the sink. Check that is it properly aligned, and make any necessary adjustments to put it back into its place.

Garbage Disposals That Leak from the Sides

A side leak on a garbage disposal unit typically indications a poor or lost drain line connection. In many residential kitchen systems, it is common for a dishwasher to be connected to the garbage disposal via a drainpipe, which directs all the collected debris and dirty water out of the house after the dish washing cycle. In some cases, the metal clamp that keeps the drainpipe in place can come loose or detach if the screws and rubber gasket sealing the pipe loses adhesiveness. Check this metal clamp to see if this is what’s causing your garbage disposal to leak. Tighten them back up with a screwdriver, and then check to see that the actual hose to ensure it has not been torn or compromised in any way.

Where to Get Trusted Plumbing Service and Garbage Disposal Repair in Indianapolis

Call Weilhammer Plumbing Company at 317-784-1870 for professional garbage disposal repair and water leak repair in Indianapolis, Indiana. Master plumber, Mark Weilhammer, is happy to provide free estimates, free advice, and a wide range of affordable plumbing services for residential and commercial properties, including full-service plumbing inspections to ensure you are protected against water leaks and do not have any current or impending water damage. Request a free estimate, today.

Indianapolis Indiana Master Plumbers 317-784-1870
Indianapolis Indiana Master Plumbers 317-784-1870

Frequently Asked Questions About Garbage Disposals

Are you experiencing some issues with your garbage disposal unit? Perhaps you don’t have a garbage disposal, but wish to learn some benefits of having one installed? Either way, you are in the right spot for getting the help you are looking for. Continue below to review the answers to the most frequently asked questions about garbage disposals.

Garbage Disposal Plumbing Services 317-784-1870
Garbage Disposal Plumbing Services 317-784-1870

What Can Go Down the Garbage Disposal?

The only foods that should be shredded in your disposal should be soft, non-fibrous, chopped, liquid, and similar foods in small amounts.  The key word here is “small amounts.” Things that should NEVER go down the disposal include fatty oils, starches, fibrous waste, fruit and vegetable pits, coffee grounds, and paper trash.

Why Does My Garbage Disposal Smell?

Food and bacteria residues are a top cause of garbage disposal odors. To abate lingering odors, it is important to clean your disposal regularly. On a routine basis, grind some ice cubes while running cold water for a minute. This will keep the blades fresh and sharp. You can also grind citrus rinds for a fresh scent. Also, while the disposal is running, pour some liquid dish detergent inside the drain to eliminate bacteria and other contaminants. Finish by running cold water down the drain for a couple of minutes. It is recommended to clean your garbage disposal every few weeks, and more often for those who use it frequently.

Do I Need a Garbage Disposal Unit in My House?

The primary benefit of having a garbage disposal unit is the convenience it provides. Food preparation, trash disposal, rodent and pest control, and efficiency, are just a few ways garbage disposals provide convenience around the house. Not only do garbage disposals provide convenience, they also provide investment protection, which ultimately saves homeowners money. By reducing the likelihood of clogging up drains and pipes, homeowners save money by avoiding costly repairs, services, and replacements. This also protects the structural integrity of plumbing pipes, keeping them functional for years to come.

How Does a Garbage Disposal Help With Pest Control?

It may not be obvious at first, but a garbage disposal is an excellent contributor to pest control, more so in commercial kitchens. In areas where extensive food preparation takes place, such as a restaurant or school cafeteria, large amounts of food scraps are produced. And large amounts of food scraps just sitting around can attract rodents’ other pests, like fruit flies, gnats, ants, and other insects. A garbage disposal allows kitchens to efficiently discard food scraps, and keep a cleaner workspace.

Why Does My Garbage Disposal Leak?

The top two causes for garbage disposal leaks are a leaky gasket or a leaky flange. When a rubber gasket gets old, or goes unused for a long period of time, it can dry up and develop a crack, which in turn leads to a leak in the gasket. It can also be caused by improper installation. If the leak is coming from the top rim where the seal mounts to the flange, it could be caused by a leaky gasket. A disposal flange can develop a leak if the plumbers’ putty dries up, or if the bolts that connect the flange to the sink comes loose. If the leak is coming from the very upper portion of the unit, it could be a flange leak.

What Kind of Maintenance Does a Garbage Disposal Require?

It is important to regularly clean out the grind chamber of your garbage disposal. You can do this safely and effectively by dropping in a few ice cubes, then grinding them up until they are gone. Do not put lemon rinds or fruit in your disposal to make it smell better. Instead, try a few drops of some lemon or citrus-scented essential oil. Other than regular cleaning, it is wise to have your unit inspected by a licensed Indianapolis plumber. This will help maintain optimal efficiency and safety, as well as, catch small problems early on, before than can become disastrous or costly.

Residential and Commercial Kitchen Plumbing Services You Can Trust

Call Weilhammer Plumbing Co. Inc. at 317-784-1870 when you need kitchen plumbing repair and service in Indianapolis at an affordable price. We provide garbage disposal replacement and carry a line of top-quality In Sink Erator®(ISE) Garbage Disposals at market low prices. Our licensed plumbers also offer a wide range of other plumbing services for both residential and commercial properties, as well as, free estimates, free plumbing advice, and even free haul-away for old plumbing appliances. Request a free estimate, today.

4 Plumbing Myths You Need to Know

There are thousands of plumbing myths out there, but 4 in particular could cause you some major problems if you fall victim to their misleading theories. Continue below to learn the top 4 plumbing myths so that you never end up with costly bills, invasive renovations, and mounds of frustration about what could have been had you known better.

Indianapolis Plumbers 317-784-1870

Indianapolis Plumbers 317-784-1870

DO NOT Fall for These Plumbing Myths:

Popping Noises Indicate a Water Heater Will Explode.

Although it is possible for a water heater to explode, as many have before, it is not likely that yours is on the verge of explosion when you hear popping or crackling sounds coming from the tank. The cause behind these alarming sounds is quite simple, and even treatable. There could be other reasons for these noises, but the most common is sediment build up at the bottom of the tank. This buildup prevents heat from rising properly when the hot water is turned on.

This reaction will definitely cause some strange sounds, but more importantly, it can reduce your water heaters performance, which can subsequently increase your water and energy bills. Think about the age of your water heater. If it is around 10 years old, it is time to have it replaced. If it is fairly new, have it inspected and serviced by a licensed technician. And be sure to keep up on proper water heater maintenance to avoid costly breakdowns and poor performance!

Ice Cubes Will Sharpen Garbage Disposal Blades.

Using ice to sharpen garbage disposal blades would be like using ice to sharpen your butcher knife. It simply will not work. It is likely that people are confusing garbage disposal cleaning with blade sharpening. You see, many professionals recommend periodically using ice cubes to clean and deodorize a garbage disposal unit; however, ice cubes will do nothing to sharpen garbage disposal blades. With proper garbage disposal maintenance, you can avoid issues like bacteria, odors, reduced performance, and repairs.

A Leaky Faucet is Not a Pressing Issue.

Many people have somehow convinced themselves that a leaking or dripping faucet is not a big deal. Unfortunately, these same people have or will eventually learn that this is far from the truth. When a faucet leaks or drips, it is an indication that something is not right, whether it is a defect with the fixture, improper installation, or something wrong with the plumbing. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 1 trillion gallons of water is wasted each year by homeowners, which adds up in terms of water bills. Additionally, a leaky faucet can lead to rust, mildew, and more, which also require time and money to fix.

Close a Faucet as Tight as Possible.

It is a common belief that the tighter you close a faucet, the better. The truth is, there is no “better” part of that scenario. You never want to close a faucet as tight as you can because it can cause damage to the inner threads that keep the handles functioning in place, which in turn can cause a water leak. Furthermore, you can cause yourself or others frustration when it comes time to open the faucet back up. Simply close your faucets to the point that the water stops, and no more.

Indianapolis Plumbing Repair

Weilhammer Plumbing Company 317-784-1870

Weilhammer Plumbing Company 317-784-1870

Call Weilhammer Plumbing Co. Inc. at 317-784-1870 when you need a licensed Indianapolis plumber you can trust. Owner and master plumber, Mark Weilhammer, has more than 60 years of experience in the plumbing industry. He can provide plumbing repair, replacements, diagnostics, installations, equipment sales, and much more. We also offer free estimates, free plumbing advice, and even free haul-away for old plumbing appliances like water heaters, water softeners, sump pumps, and more.

Garbage Disposal Plumbing Tips

Indianapolis Garbage Disposal Repair 317-784-1870

Indianapolis Garbage Disposal Repair 317-784-1870

Plumbers know that garbage disposals are among the most misused appliances in households. That is because many homeowners do not recognize that garbage disposals are not meant to be used as blenders for large deposits of food. Instead, they are designed to grind leftover food residues that are rinsed from plates. Anything more substantial than that, other than the occasional ice-cube cleanse, is not meant for residential garbage disposal systems.

Disposing of large quantities of food will result in a call to your local plumbing company for garbage disposal repair. It is the most common reason why disposal systems clog or breakdown. To prevent garbage disposal problems, continue reading for some helpful usage, cleaning, and maintenance tips.

Simple Garbage Disposal Fixes

Sometimes, when your garbage disposal is whirring but just not working, it may be something that can be easily resolved on your own. First, press the “reset” button located on the bottom of the disposal underneath your sink. If this doesn’t help, turn the power OFF to your garbage disposal and grab a flashlight. Peer into the drain and look for any solid objects, such as twisty-ties, bottle caps, or anything else that could be holding up your system.

If you do see something, carefully pull it out with a pair of pliers or some type of grasping tool. Never put your hands in the disposal! And if you use pliers, be careful not to damage the blades or other inner components of your garbage disposal. Your garbage disposal may also come with a hex-jam key, which is a tool used to unclog or un-jam the system. These keys are usually taped to the bottom of the disposal, next to the opening where it is inserted. Simply insert the key and wiggle it around a few times to release any blockages.

Garbage Disposal Odor Elimination

For garbage disposal odors, there are a few simple tricks to try out. On a routine basis, it is important to clean your disposal to eliminate food and bacteria residues. On a routine basis, grind some ice cubes while running cold water for a minute. This will keep the blades fresh and sharp. You can also grind citrus rinds for a fresh scent. Also, while the disposal is running, pour some liquid dish detergent inside the drain to eliminate bacteria and other contaminants. Finish by running cold water down the drain for a couple of minutes. It is recommended to clean your garbage disposal every few weeks, and more often for those who use it frequently.

Professional Plumbing Service

Weilhammer Plumbing Company Indianapolis Indiana

Weilhammer Plumbing Company 317-784-1870

Call Weilhammer Plumbing Co. Inc. at 317-784-1870 for professional and affordable garbage disposal repair in Indianapolis, Indiana. Master plumber, Mark Weilhammer, and his team of licensed plumbers, have decades of experience in the plumbing industry, and can repair a garbage disposal in no time at all! Our family owned and operated business have served Hoosiers for over 100 years, so there is no better choice for dependable plumbing service in town. We offer a wide range of residential and commercial plumbing services, including water heaters, water softeners, water purification, and more. Call 317-784-1870 to request a free estimate for Indianapolis garbage disposal repair, today.