Sherry Tyra: If you have a garbage disposal you may have experienced the dreadful moment when it quits working. I am going to show you some easy tips that will help you keep your disposal working great for years to come.
The most important thing to remember is only put biodegradable food into the disposal. That means no plastic, glass, metal or paper products. There are also some food products you should be careful to avoid.
Fibrous materials such as corn husks, celery stalks, onion skins, artichokes and meat bones will not grind properly and could get wedged in the blades. Grease can build up in your pipes causing clogs too. Hot water will cause any grease and food to liquefy, so always use cold water when running your disposal to avoid clogs.
Once you are careful of what you put down the disposal, there are some easy steps you can take to keep your disposal running at peak efficiency.
Periodically grinding frozen vinegar cubes in your disposal will keep the blade sharp, break up any grease that has accumulated and disinfect at the same time.
Eliminate smells by grinding a few lemon or orange slices. The oils and juice are a natural and scented way to clean the walls of the disposal.
Don't forget the rubber seal, food and grease can build up on the under side causing odors. Make sure the disposal is off and use a small brush or scrubber to clean the under side of any debris.
If you drop something down the disposal, never place your hands inside to retrieve the item. Make sure the disposal is off and use a long set of tweezers or a pickle picker to retrieve the item.
By following these simple rules, you'll keep your garbage disposal working great for years to come.