Why is My Garbage Disposal Not Working?

October 30, 2022

Our homes need regular maintenance; otherwise, problems tend to occur with one thing or another. However, issues arise when you use something frequently, such as kitchen appliances. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise when you realize your garbage disposal is not working. In rare cases, you may need to change your garbage disposal. Other times, you can get your garbage disposal working again. Carry on reading to know how.

What to do When Garbage Disposal is Not Working?

Before you try anything, check if your garbage disposal is plugged in. Yes, as simple as it sounds, your sink disposal might be unplugged. If that doesn’t do it, you can try following these steps:

1. Take a Look at the Electrical Circuit

Local building codes usually require the electrician to run one shared circuit for both the garbage disposal and dishwasher, especially if the house is new. If there are more outlets on the same circuit, the breaker could trip. Hence, running the disposal at the same time as something else, like a toaster, could result in a tripped breaker.

Test the outlets in the kitchen to check how many have power. It is probable that too many outlets share the same circuit if the additional ones have no power. An electrician might help prevent the circuits from overloading.

2. Reset the Garbage Disposal

You might need to hit the garage disposal reset button if it is getting power. Plug in the disposal cord, and press the reset button if it still doesn’t work. Typically, the button is located on the side or bottom of the garbage disposal’s under-sink part. Press the button firmly once you find it and release it. The garbage disposal might overheat, and the reset button might trip if you overload it with food scraps.

3. Turn the Flywheel & Impellers

The impellers and ring shred whatever comes in contact with them when the garbage disposal flywheel spins. The reason why your garbage disposal is not working could be because it is jammed. You might notice the garbage disposal is humming but not working if something is stuck in it that is too hard for the impeller to break down. Cut off the power before you start fixing the garbage disposal.

You’ll find a small depression at the very center on the disposal’s bottom outside. Fit a key or wrench in that depression to rotate the flywheel and impellers firmly. This will help free the item that is jamming your garbage disposal. In addition, you can dislodge the jammed particle with a broomstick. Remember not to put your hands in the disposal; it could be dangerous.

4. Check for Leaks Under the Sink

Your garbage disposal might be leaking instead of not turning on. Therefore, move everything out from the under-sink area and unplug the garbage disposal. Inspect the plumbing around the disposal, especially the lines that run to and from it. Moreover, examine the discharge tube connecting the disposal to the sink drain line. If the water leaks when you’re operating the dishwasher, you should check the dishwasher drain line. You can tighten the connections or replace the lines to resolve this issue.

The Closing Word

If your garbage disposal is not working, there could be multiple reasons. Luckily, you can resolve most of the issues yourself. Still, it is always recommended to consult a professional for garbage disposal problems and solutions. Boutros Construction Inc. can help with your plumbing issues and more. Dial (713) 587-0000 to give us a call.


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