Garbage disposals are essential items in the kitchen. They efficiently break down food particles, allowing their natural passage through your drain system. Without such a system, your sink would get blocked constantly when you rinse your dishes in the sink. However, garbage disposals can begin to smell bad over time if they are not regularly deodorized. In fact, a stinky garbage waste disposal system can make your entire house stink! Thankfully, there are simple ways of ensuring that your system remains odorless. They range from routine cleaning, natural remedies, and chemical treatments.
How to Clean Your Garbage Disposal
- Turn on the system
- Pour a stream of hot water down it for about sixty seconds
- Shut down the system and stopper the sink
- Pour warm water and detergent in the stoppered sink
- Scrub the sink basin
- Turn on system and remove stopper from the sink basin
- Once the water has completely drained, detach any removable parts from system and thoroughly scrub using a small brush
- Rinse the basin and removable systems well
- Reattach the parts you removed
Natural Remedies for Garbage Disposal Odors
Many chemical agents can unclog your garbage disposal, but natural remedies are cheap, eco-friendly, and readily available. Give these tips a try in your kitchen:
Ice, Salt and Vinegar
A block of ice will push off large particles from the wall of the disposal system. Salt scrubs the walls. Any salt will do; table salt, rock salt, and sea salt will all work the same. However, for the best results, use rock salt. It is harder and will scrub the walls harder.
Ice and vinegar will also work efficiently. Vinegar is acidic. Therefore, vinegar will break down food particles and eliminate the microorganisms growing in the system. Ice will remove the fat particles.
How to do it:
- Pick two ice cubes from your fridge
- Drop the cubes in your disposal
- Pour three teaspoons of salt or half a cup of vinegar into the system
- Turn the disposal system on and run it for sixty seconds
- Switch the system off and pour a stream of hot water to drain particles
If the stench is too much, you should use baking soda. Baking soda should be utilized with vinegar. When baking soda and vinegar combine, a chemical reaction occurs. The reaction causes loosening of stuck particles that are responsible for the stench. Some hot water can be poured into the system to push the loosened particles away.
How to do it:
- Pour a half a cup of vinegar into the system
- Pour a similar amount of baking soda
- Fizzling will occur. Wait for about five minutes for this reaction to die down
- Pour a stream of hot water to rinse out the system.
The Power of Citrus
Citrus gives the system a fresh smell. Citrus fruits are typical cheap agents of deodorizing. They contain citric acid. This acid disinfects the blades and walls of the disposal system effectively removing garbage that is stuck.
The citrus smell that remains will mask any bad smells that remain to leave your system smelling sweet and fresh. You don’t have to use the whole orange; just a piece will do or even the peels.
How to do it:
- Get some lemon or orange pieces or peels
- Grind the pieces
- Pour the resulting matter in the garbage disposal system. This should be done after cleaning the system.
Store-Bought Garbage Disposal Deodorizers
If you are not a big fan of home remedies, you could go for commercial garbage disposal cleaning products. Oxygen-based cleaners are an excellent choice. They are safe and can easily be degraded.
You pour the oxygen based cleaner down the system then you run a good amount of water. The water will cause foaming. This foam will remove sticky particles and get rid of stench in the process.
Mouthwash would be a great option also. If it is safe for the mouth, it is safe for your kitchen. Pour mouthwash down the system. Follow this with hot water.
How to Avoid Garbage Disposal Odors
Some particles are likely to make your garbage disposal stink more than others. In order to properly maintain your garbage disposal and keep odor problems to a minimum, avoid putting the following items down your garbage disposal:
- Greasy Items. Grease is sticky. Over time, it also smells. Fatty food particles will make the system sticky causing other particles to attach themselves to the walls.
- Large Items. The garbage disposal system will not easily cut up large pieces of vegetable and fruit. These will clog the system. Once they clog the system, getting them out will be difficult. They will decompose and produce putrid smells. Prevent this by throwing in items that will pass through quickly.
- Runny Food Items. Runny foods do not clean out quickly. They will remain in the system for a longer time. Their smells are likely to linger in your kitchen. Avoid dumping raw eggs, honey or fish in the system.
- Very Small Particles. Minuscule particles will build up quickly in the system and cause clogging over time. Avoid particularly items that are ground, such as coffee.
Dealing with a smelly or broken garbage disposal in your Austin, TX home? S&D Plumbing can be there same-day—call (512) 648-4663 now!