Getting to Know Your Garbage Disposal
Turn off power to the disposer at the breaker and also make sure the disposer is unplugged. Lean a 2×4 against the wall behind the sink to brace the disposer. Loosen the mounting nuts that secure the disposer to the sink. Disconnect the power cord. Flush the drain by pushing a plumber’s snake down it. Use the pliers to pull any trapped food out of the drain. Pull on the plug to pull apart the lines connected to the disposer. Next, disconnect the drain line that leads into the disposer from below the sink. The line is held in place by a nut.
Continue to pull out the drain line, but work carefully so that you don’t kink the line. Once the drain line is free from the disposer, disconnect it from the other drain pipes and remove the disposer. Take off the tailpiece on the disposer using the screwdriver. If the plumber’s snake didn’t remove all the material from the disposal line, use a scoop inserted into the drain to clear any remaining debris. To replace a broken garbage disposal, you need to first disconnect power to the disposer at the breaker and also make sure the disposer is unplugged. With a garbage disposal, the mounting ring is connected to the drain assembly with screws. Loosen those with a screwdriver.
Advantages of DIY Installation
DIY installation will be cheaper than hiring a plumber or handyman, and one of the best reasons to do it is so you can learn how to unblock a garbage disposal if your sink clogs up.
Most garbage disposals come with an installation manual. Read it through completely and follow the instructions. For example, you might need to remove a wall plug or insulation. Also make sure that all the main parts are there and that there are no missing parts. Then get the right equipment.
Buy reinforced PVC pipe that’s at least 3 inches longer than the garbage disposal flange.
Buy a steel extension pipe if you can’t access the lines under your sink.
Buy a good quality PVC pipe wrench.
Buy at least 8 feet of drain PVC pipe to connect the disposal to the PVC pipes under your sink.
Buy PVC pipe cement to glue the drain to the pipe.
Buy PVC glue to glue the PVC pipe.
Buy plumber’s tape to tape the joint.
Make sure you have the right wire to connect the garbage disposal to the power source. Also have a pathway laid out so you can get your hands under the sink and to the screws easily.
Safety Precautions Prior to Installation
Before you begin, turn OFF your power supply. Make sure that your sink is unclogged so that the water can flow freely. Keep in mind that if the sink has been clogged for a long period, the pipes may have been damaged and require a professional repair.
Inspect the entire area prior to installation. Make sure that there are no leaks in the pipes or any other problems that could hinder the installation.
Steps on How to Install a Garbage Disposal
Keep Your Garbage Disposal Regularly Clean:
Clean your garbage disposer regularly (it is recommended to do this every week) using a vinegar and warm water solution. You can use this with the unit running. This helps to clean out any buildup of food in the unit. Use the drain or spray attachment if you have one available.
Use The Correct Tools:
Using a wrench to hold the garbage disposal helps to keep it stable and reduces the risk of damaging the unit while cleaning it. Using clean water and vinegar should be enough cleaning for your unit. If you have food build up, you can use a commercial drain cleaning product, available at any hardware, home improvement store, or big box store.
Use The Correct Bins:
If your garbage disposal is full of water, it may means that you have left a foreign object such as a spoon or food in it. Refrigerator and freezer gaskets are also quite common and may cause your disposal to flood. Check for these things if you believe the disposal is flooding and make sure that objects are not lodged in the drain.
Check The Electrical Wiring:
When to Call a Plumber
Common sense sounds like it should be enough to help you understand exactly when you should call a plumber. Yet, many people don't know when to call a plumber until something major happens. And we're sure you don't want to wait until it's too late to handle your plumbing issue. So, here is a list of the common plumbing problems and when you should handle them:
Clogged Toilets – A clogged toilet is the most common plumbing problem. It happens to all of us and it can take care of itself. If you determine that you can unclog the toilet before it becomes a messy problem, then simply follow the directions on your product's label and you should be able to fix the problem. If not, then call a plumber.
Dripping or Gurgling Faucets – A dripping faucet is another relatively common plumbing problem. If it's a minor leak from the faucet, you can fix it yourself by looking at the washer on the faucet. If it's leaking enough that it can't be fixed by replacing the washer, then you should call a plumber.