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.