How to free a jammed garbage disposal

By  

Does your garbage disposal sound like a wood chipper? Resist the temptation to try to grind up whatever is obstructing it and watch Julie Sussman and Stephanie Glakas-Tenet, authors of the Dare to Repair books, as they show you how to free a jammed garbage disposal.

How to free a jammed garbage disposal
  1. Whatever you do, resist the temptation to grind whatever is obstructing your garbage disposal.
  2. Turn off the electricity switch. Using tongs or needle-nose pliers and a flashlight, try to free whatever is jammed inside.
  3. If you can’t, go to your main service panel and turn off the electricity.
  4. Position yourself under the sink, take an Allen wrench and insert it into the garbage disposal base (inside the hole) and turn it clockwise and counterclockwise until you can go around in either direction; this means the object is dislodged.
  5. Once the object is dislodged, go back to your electrical service panel and turn the electricity back on.
  6. Go back to the garbage disposal base, press the reset button, turn on the water, and turn on the electricity switch. You should no longer hear an object lodged.
  7. To avoid future jams, avoid pits, peels, bones and grease down your garbage disposal.
Transcript STEPHANIE:  Hi I’m Stephanie Glakas-Tenet-

JULIE:  And I’m Julie Sussman.

STEPHANIE:  And we’re the co-authors of the Dare To Repair book series.

JULIE:  And we’re here on howdini to show you how to free a jammed garbage disposal. Does that sound familiar?

STEPHANIE:  Whatever you do resist the temptation to grind into oblivion whatever’s obstructing you garbage disposal.

JULIE:  Right. Instead what we want you to do is use tongs or needle nose pliers-

STEPHAINE:  And a flashlight. And we turn off the electricity. Hit the switch.

JULIE:  Try to free whatever is jammed inside.

STEPHANIE:  And if you can’t, then you have to go and to your main service panel off and turn off the electricity.

JULIE:  Okay, now here is the hardest part, getting underneath the sink.

STEPHANIE:  Literally, this Allen wrench is the key to the solution.

JULIE:  So take the Allen wrench and insert it into the base. There’s a little hole in there, and your going to turn it clockwise and counter clockwise until you can free the object.

STEPHANIE:  It might be easier to see what we’re doing from this model that’s not installed under the sink.

JULIE:  Right, and here is the hole that the Allen wrench goes into, and once it’s in we turn it clockwise and counterclockwise until you can go around in either direction. That means you’ve dislodged the object.

STEHPANIE:  And when you have, head back to your electrical service panel, turn on the electricity.

JULIE:  And come back, hit the reset button.

STEPHANIE:  Turn on the water, hit the switch.

JULIE:  Ah, music to our ears.

STEPHANIE:  And if you want to keep it music to your ears, make sure you avoid pits, peals, bones, and grease down your garbage disposal.
meet theexpert
  • Julie, Stephanie Sussman, Glakas-Tenet

    Julie, Stephanie Sussman, Glakas-Tenet Authors, Dare to Repair Julie Sussman and Stephanie Glakas-Tenet knew a thing or two about keeping a house running, and fixing things when they broke, so they decided to pour their knowledge into a book to share with others. The Dare to Repair book series was launched. more about this expert »

check outSPORTS
Little children playing team soccer

get more fromexperts