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Garbage Disposals: What Can and Can NOT Go in Them

Sink with Water Flowing Down into a Garbage DisposalIn the event that you have a garbage disposal in your Hillcrest rental house, you may have different opinions about it. Some individuals appreciate having them, but others do not like the way the disposal always seems to break down, which results in even bigger problems. Fortunately, a lot of these breakdowns can be avoided by initially learning how to use and clean garbage disposal properly, preventing damage and expensive repairs. So, although it’s true that disposals are prone to bad smells and clogs if not used and cleaned regularly, by regularly applying a few simple rules, it is possible to keep yours clean and functional.

Garbage disposal is one of the most helpful kitchen appliances when it is used correctly. Food scraps can be safely disposed of in a kitchen garbage disposal, a much better alternative than stinking up a garbage can. Most biodegradable food items, such as fruit and vegetable scraps, scraps of meat, and small pieces of citrus rinds, can be put down garbage disposal without any complications.

It is worth noting that there are a few big exceptions to that rule. Anything hard, like eggshells, bones, and fruit pits should never be put in a garbage disposal. The same rule applies to coffee grounds and popcorn kernels, which will rattle around and get stuck in the disposal’s blades. Other foods like celery, pasta, rice, and potato peels should also be evaded because their stringy, starchy fibers can easily clog garbage disposal. Putting any of these items in your garbage disposal may cause your entire appliance to break down. Lastly, grease should never be poured into the disposal. It coats the pipes and can lead to clogs and bad odors in your kitchen.

Every so often, a garbage disposal may still end up smelling bad due to decomposing food and grease that can get trapped in and around the disposal. Mold and bacteria can also grow on rubber strainer flanges and other areas, causing odors. The pros at Mr. Rooter suggest keeping odors away by running cold water every time you use the disposal, which helps flush out accumulating food matter. They also recommend running the disposal a bit longer than when the grinding noises even out, about five extra seconds. To clean your disposal blades, try putting ice cubes and citrus peels in it from time to time. Both will help clean the blades and make your disposal smell fresh. With proper cleaning and maintenance, you can better avoid pricey repairs and keep your rental property’s garbage disposal running well for a long time.

Even good preventative measures won’t help much unless you are cleaning the property’s garbage disposal regularly. To learn how, consider using a professional guide to cleaning your appliance, such as the one found on the Mr. Rooter website. Also, if you have questions about garbage disposal use and maintenance, be sure to ask your landlord, property management company, or plumbing professional. Asking a question could mean the difference between a functional garbage disposal and a greasy, soupy mess in your sink.

Are you looking for a great new rental property? If so, check out our available listings. If you are a property owner looking for management services, contact us online or call us at 202-813-9993.

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