How to Repair a Broken Trash Pump

What You'll Need
Insulated gloves
Electrical tape
Plumbers putty
Tool kit

If your trash pump starts giving you trouble, you need to remove it to inspect it and determine the cause of the malfunction. If you’ve installed a trash pump before you will find this task relatively easy. But, if you haven’t worked on the plumbing and garbage disposal system before, gather the necessary tools and materials and follow the guidelines given below.

Step 1 - Analyze the Problem

Before you start your repairs you need to first analyze the problem you’re trying to fix. If the garbage disposal system is leaking, you will have to check the connections to the waste water disposal lines. Conversely, is the trash pump has stopped working altogether, inspect the power supply and the trash pump itself. Besides this, if the garbage disposal system is very noisy, there might be something stuck in it that needs to be removed.

Step 2 - Remove the Trash Pump

If the trash pump has stopped functioning, you need to grab your tools and work on removing the entire system from the sink. Since this job could get messy, keep a bucket under the sink and a few rags handy to catch any waste that falls off. You will have to remove the connector pipes that connect the pump to the waste water disposal lines and also disconnect the wiring. Make sure you read the owner’s manual before disconnecting the wiring and remember to shut down your main source of power.

Step 3 - Removing Mounting Bolts

Loosen the mounting bolts that hold the garbage disposal system in place. Once this system has been removed, you will have to get it inspected by a professional to find out why it isn’t working as it should.

Step 4 - Troubleshooting

If the trash disposal system isn’t working well, check the flywheel. This flywheel spins the impellers that shred your garbage. With the help of a wrench you will have to loosen the flywheel. To do this, insert the wrench into the hex hole that’s located under the assembly and turn it clockwise and counter clockwise. 

If this still doesn’t solve your problem, inspect the impellers to find out if they need sharpening and follow the instructions on your manual to get them sharpened.

Step 5 - Cleaning Up Clogs

After inspecting all parts of the garbage disposal system, take a look at the drain pipes to identify clogs. Garbage that doesn’t get cut up ends up clogging the drain pipe. Consider replacing the pipes if they’re severely clogged.

Step 6 - Fixing the Trash Pump Back On

Once you’ve completed all these tasks, you need to test the trash pump to find out if you’ve solved the problem. If it still doesn’t work, have an electrician examine the electrical circuit.

If you can’t seem to find out the real cause of the problem, purchase a new trash pump and install it. This is because the cost of repairing the old one may exceed the cost of buying and installing a new garbage disposal system in your sink.