The big meal is over, and helpers pile into the kitchen to help clean up and put away food. Make sure your “chief plate scraper” knows these dos and don’ts. Otherwise, your celebration could be disrupted by an emergency need for a drain cleaner.
A garbage disposal unit is a modern convenience and eco-friendly. When you use a disposal, it requires minimal energy and reduces the amount of methane gas created by food in the landfill.
Food processed by your disposal moves through the sewer system and is treated at the water plant. Once recycled, these same food scraps are reborn as fertilizer and clean water.
Be advised, however, a garbage disposal is not a catch-all. There are rules to follow, to prevent the need for drain cleaner or an emergency visit from a plumber.
Keep These Out to Keep Your Drain Cleaner
These include potato peels, onion skins, carrot peelings, celery, asparagus, artichokes, and roughage like chard, kale, and lettuce. These stick like glue to the disposal blades and can quickly cause a jam.
Your compost heap or the trash is the best place for pits, seeds, and apple cores. They are too solid for a disposal to process.
In general, disposals and drains handle most liquids just fine. The problem with grease is it solidifies when it cools. These fatty clogs should be avoided. This includes cooking oils, butters, salad dressings, and mayonnaise.
These sandy hazards love to get caught in the drain trap. Keep them out.
Rice and Pasta
Just like when you cook pasta and rice in water, they expand. The same thing happens when these starches are left in the garbage disposal. Want a clog? Dump leftover mac and cheese or rice pilaf in your disposal. You’ll be sending someone to the store for drain cleaner in no time.
Fish bones are generally tolerable. Any other bones, however, are best left in the garbage. Even a chicken bone is cause for a visit from a plumber, and maybe even a new disposal.
Best for the compost pile, or crush and leave around your flower garden. These add calcium to the soil. In your garbage disposal, the inner membrane of the eggshell sticks to the disposal blades.
Feel Free to Feed These to Your Disposal Drain
Occasionally throw a few ice cubes down the drain. The solid ice will dislodge some food residue on the blades, as the blades work through them. For bonus points, freeze vinegar or lemon juice to clean and freshen.
Liquids and Soft Foods
Pretty self-explanatory. Some people say if a toddler could chew it, it’s good to go down the disposal. Likewise, if you want to dispose of solid foods, chop them up accordingly.
Chances are you’re not disposing of dish soap down the drain. You can pour some in, run some cold water, and you have a quick drain cleaner.
For optimal function, run cold water through your disposal for 20 to 30 seconds before and after you grind anything. If you don’t, slimy food scraps will remain, and these will cause your sink to smell bad. Plus, when left behind, many of these items will adhere as they dry, producing a “glue-like” substance. This situation increases the need for a heavy-duty drain cleaner.
The Ultimate Drain Cleaner – An Estes Services Plumber
Have a situation with your drain or disposal? Call Estes Services for a licensed plumber. Our professionals will have your drains flowing and your disposals churning. For the most convenience, engage Estes Services in a plumbing maintenance agreement.
You’ll receive priority service, discounts on any repairs, a plumbing maintenance check, and a flush and clean of your water heater. Contact us today to learn more about our maintenance options and expert plumbing services.