How to Deodorize Your Garbage Disposal: Lemon, Ice, & Baking Soda

How to Deodorize Your Garbage Disposal with ICE

Here’s the garbage disposal ice trick, get some ice from your freezer. What you’re going to do is take the ice you have; the more, the better it is. You’re going to fill your sink with cold water, not hot water, just cold water, and follow the five easy steps below: 

1Put the sink’s stopper to fill it with a few inches of cold water.
2Throw away the ice you have in the sink.
3Put some soap in it; you can use ordinary dishwashing soap.
4Start throwing away.
5Once the garbage disposal is working, take the lid off the sink, and all the ice, water, and large chunks of ice will drain out.
Cleaning Your Garbage Disposal with Ice

I recommend repeating these steps at least every six months to prevent any smell from coming back. Now, what this does is it acts like an abrasive, and the ice that goes down there will break up any food or anything that’s in the way that’s in those little grooves and cracks there and wash it out. Now, once you’re done with all five steps, you’re going to put some soap in the garbage disposal. Prevent putting too much, maybe three tablespoons, no big deal, but you’re going to put soap in there and let it sit for a couple of minutes.

After a couple of minutes, you can go ahead, turn on the water, and you can run the garbage disposal a little bit. You won’t see any more food in there, the inside walls are clean, there’s no more smell, it’s fresh, your kitchen smells great, and you’re happy. Now, let’s clean your garbage disposal with lemon, vinegar, and baking soda.

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How to Clean Your Garbage Disposal with Lemon, Vinegar, and Baking Soda

Let’s start by gathering the supplies you will need to clean up your garbage disposal. After researching, I found that you can get most of these items from your kitchen cabinet. So, to clean your garbage disposal with lemon, vinegar, and baking soda, you will also need the following items:

Things You’ll Need
1 lemon cut into small pieces and without seeds.
1/2 cup of baking soda.
1 cup of vinegar.
2 to 3 cups of ice.
6 cups of boiling water.
1 cup of salt.
Cleaning Your Garbage Disposal Overview

First, you need to grab the gasket or splash guard over the disposer with your tweezers and pull it out of the sink; never put your hand in the disposer, as doing so can cause serious injury. Once you have your splash guard off, you may quickly realize that it can be one of the leading causes of the odor coming from the grease in your sink, and food fragments get trapped in the folds of the splash guard and can start to rot, which can be a great source of bad odor.

Take your splash guard and do a thorough cleaning on it; soak it in a sink full of soapy water before cleaning it with a scrubber. If, after trying to clean your splash guard, it still smells, you can contemplate replacing it altogether; they are relatively low-cost and tend to cost around 5 dollars. Now inspect the inside of your garbage disposal to see if any large blockages may be causing the odor. Remember that you should never throw things like grease, vegetables, and pits from fruits away into the garbage disposal; they can damage your disposal and plumbing system. Next, you’ll need to follow these practical seven simple steps to clean and clear your garbage disposal using the items that I listed above as follows:

1Inspect the garbage disposal, remove any possible blockages, apply half a cup of baking soda, and pour it into the garbage disposal. Then, pour a cup of vinegar into the garbage disposal. Let it work for two or three minutes as it bubbles and makes noise.
2Take boiling water and pour it down the drain to rinse off the baking soda and vinegar.
3Fill the garbage disposal with ice (approximately 2 to 3 cups).
4Take a cup of salt and pour it into the ice-filled garbage disposal.
5Run cold water and the garbage disposal until the combination of ice and salt disappears. The ice and salt help loosen dirt buildup inside the garbage disposal.
6Put the splash guard back on the sink.
7Take lemon wedges, put them in the garbage disposal, turn on the cold water, and run the disposal. The lemon smell helps eliminate any leftover odor in the disposal.
Cleaning Your Garbage Disposal with Lemon, Vinegar, and Baking Soda

That’s it; your garbage disposal should be cleaned and smell great. If you still have a terrible smell in your sink, contact a local plumber to get your homework done professionally. 

How to Unjam a Garbage Disposal

If your disposer is stuck, you will know because you will hear the motor stall when you start it. Before working on your disposal, you should make sure that the switch that activates the disposal is off. You can use your food waste disposal tool or use the 1/4 Allen key set to unlock the disposal. When you insert the tool under the disposal, you turn and manually force the blades to remove the disposal restriction. If there is a restriction when you put your wrench in, you will keep pushing and pushing back and rotating it. You will try to get it to release and spin freely with your hand.

Once you clear the restriction, go ahead, and remove your tool. When you have restraint, the (RED) forward button located under the garbage disposal acts as a guard. What will happen is that if there is a restriction, the blades will fire with the reset button and once you remove the restriction, make sure you have pressed the [RED] reset button. Now, you may be able to go ahead and turn on the garbage disposal at this point. Sometimes, depending on the restriction, you may have cleared it, but you may have pushed it to the center, and if it is a hard object, it will get stuck in the blade again.

You want to move forward once you remove the constraint and rotate it manually with your hands with your tool and press the reset button. Go ahead and turn on your garbage disposal; if it’s clear that there are no problems, then you’re good at this point. But sometimes you will have to make a more thorough diagnosis to remove the restriction. After numerous attempts, even when you turn the garbage disposal back on at this point, you don’t hear the motor blocking because the (RED) button was reset, and now, since it’s in the “pop” position, even when you turn it on you won’t hear the motor.

So at this point, you need to remove any restrictions inside the garbage disposal manually. Avoid putting your hand into the garbage disposal. I recommend you to use a shop-vacuum or tongs to extract any restriction inside the garbage disposal. Make sure the switch is off. You will be speechless by what you can find inside the garbage disposal; you will find glass, coins, bottle caps, and fishbones. Now that you have overcome the restriction turn on the disposer; the disposer should run smoothly. 

Garbage Disposal Basics and Common Problems

Garbage disposals are designed to crush solid food into small particles that can be washed down the pipe. To do this, the disposer is installed within the kitchen sink drain and the drainpipe that sends water and waste outside the house. Please note that you must remove the disposal stopper for the dishwasher to empty if you have a dishwasher. Disposers are usually connected to a switch in the kitchen, although batch feed disposers have a plug-activated start switch. 

When the switch is activated, 120 volts of alternating current runs to the disposer motor, which rotates a grinder plate to break down food particles. A steady stream of cold water must flow through the disposer for this process to work effectively. The disposer uses a splash guard that prevents water from hanging up.

The 3 Most Common Problems with Garbage Disposal

Often homeowners have problems when using the garbage disposal. Ahead I listed the three most common problems with garbage disposal. Let’s review how we can prevent or at least lower these inconvenience problems from happening in the future. The three most common problems with garbage disposals include: Drainage being blocked, the grinding plate getting jammed, and the disposer developing a leak.

Why Does the Garbage Disposal Drainage Block?

As I mentioned earlier, to prevent clogged drains, you should not place potato peels, corn husks, and other fibrous materials in the disposer. After a clog has been removed, consideration should be given to using a disposer cleaner to clean the appliance and reduce odors.

Why Does the Garbage Disposal Grinding Plate Get Jammed?

A shredding jam can overheat the disposer motor, which can trigger a reset button often found on the bottom of the housing. If the disposer does not work at all, first try pressing the reset button; if the disposer still does not work, check to see if a house fuse has blown or if a circuit breaker has tripped. The switch may have failed; you can also test the continuity switch to determine if there is a continuous electrical path. Most disposers have an aperture on the bottom of the housing if the shredding plate jams. You can insert an Allen key into this opening to manually turn the motor and plate to clear the obstruction. If your model does not have an opening on the bottom, you can insert a wood broom handle through the drain opening to turn the plate.

Why Do the Garbage Disposals Develop a Leak?

A leak that comes from near the top of the disposer is often caused by the mounting joint or splash guard’s failure. Replacing the gasket or splash guard assembly can correct this issue. If the leak is originating from the disposer housing, then the entire disposer needs to be replaced.