Yes, you do have to maintain your garbage disposal. If you want it to keep doing its job for you and your family daily, that is.
Or at the very least - just know what not to put in it.
Here are some easy tips to keep this essential kitchen appliance grinding along smoothly.
Run it every time you put something in it. Food buildup not only causes jams but some pretty nasty smells, too.
Worse (OK, maybe not worse but equally problematic) is the acids in foods lingering there can cause corrosion in your pipes.
Forget what you've heard. You want the oils and fats in your disposal to congeal so that you can chop them up and flush them out.
Let the cold rush continue for at least 30 seconds after the grinding stops to make sure all the byproducts are washed away.
it jams, turn off the disposal immediately. Then turn off the water and
use tongs to dislodge any objects that may be stuck inside. Wait a few
minutes and then hit the reset button if needed. (Some disposals
Anything that's not food. Nothing stringy (think artichokes, banana peels or cornhusks.) No flour, grease or oil.
Consider marking your disposal button with a red dot so you (or guests) don't turn it on by mistake.
Disinfect the sink each day. You can actually disinfect your sink, sponges and dishcloths all at once. Here's how:
Fill the kitchen sink with a basic disinfecting solution (3/4 cup of bleach to 1 gallon of hot water). Soak sponges and dishcloths for 10 minutes, and then let the bleachy water run down the drain.
This sanitizes the sponges and disinfect the sink and drain area in one easy step.
To disinfect the sink faucet handle, simply wipe down the faucet handle daily with a disposable disinfecting wipe, or spray it with a combination cleaner-disinfectant product.
About the Author
Tara Aronson is a native Californian. Having grown up in San Diego, she studied journalism and Spanish to pursue a career in newspaper writing. Tara, whose three children - Chris, Lyndsay, and Payne - are the light of her life, now lives and writes in Los Angeles. She also regularly appears on television news programs throughout the U.S.