Of all the parts of the kitchen, one of the most problematic areas is the sink garbage disposal. Several different factors may lead this component to refuse to drain, which can lead to water overflow. This can also lead to an accumulation of food waste, which can result in rotting and a foul smell. Maintaining your disposal is necessary for continuous efficient service. In case a problem does come up, there are some simple troubleshooting mechanisms that can be followed to correct it.
Sudden Shut Down
If the garbage disposer stops mid way through its work, this may be due to the circuit protection present in the system. You might hear a clicking sound, which is just the switch turning off. In this case, you must push in the button, which is located at the bottom of the dispenser unit. Make sure that the garbage disposal is left alone for some time so as not to put additional load on the circuit protection.
If everything is alright, the system will start working again and it will properly drain. If the problem still persists, give the system some more time and use other mechanisms to do the chore.
In case the garbage disposal is emitting the usual humming sound but not actually working, the problem is that the shredders are jammed. This happens when something which is too hard for the hammers to shred. To fix it, first switch off the disposal. Use a long slim tool like a screwdriver to clear the shredder. There are holes at the base; this is where the tool has to be fixed in order to rotate it. It will require some pressure in the initial stages, but applying some grease on it and switching on the water supply would help the matter hence clearing the whole congestion.
These results from accumulation of small substances at the J bend, stopping the complete flow. The only way to solve this problem is to open the J bend by unlocking the nuts supporting it and removing the junk (place a bucket underneath to collect everything that comes down when the bend is opened). Once the cleaning is complete, replace the J bend and test the system by turning on the water. In most cases, this should be helpful; otherwise, the problem is somewhere further down the line which would require assistance from a plumber.
Power Up Problems
If the disposal does not start up at all, the problem is electrical in nature with the switch or the circuit not working properly. The breakers need to be checked for a trip. If this is not the problem, then replace the switch or call an electrician. You may need help from a disposal technician if there is no problem with the switches as the system may have been damaged internally.