What not to put down a kitchen disposal

A garbage disposal in the kitchen sink can be a great tool. Using it correctly will avoid problems down the line.

Residential disposals are designed primarily for getting rid of soft food waste; think potato peels, carrot tops, etc. Any time these solids are put down the disposal the water should be run down the drain for at least 10-20 seconds. This will clear the drain.

Some food items should not be put down the disposal because they can cause problems. Anything that can absorb water and swell should not be put down the drain. This includes cooked pasta and rice. Many times these will clog the drain.

Also, anything granular should not be put down the drain. Coffee grounds and egg shells become a sandy sludge at the bottom of horizontal runs of drain pipe. They are heavy and very difficult to flush out with water. They form a rough surface on the bottom of the pipe and tend to catch other solids coming down the line. This causes clogs.

Restricting disposal use to soft non-absorbent food waste, and flushing the line with plenty of water should result in years of happy food waste grinding.

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