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Top Five Foods that Shouldn’t Go in Your Garbage Disposal

Some people would argue that garbage disposal clogs are more hassle than having a garbage disposal is worth.  However, garbage disposals can provide convenience in clean-up when used properly.  By avoiding certain foods when using a garbage disposal, you can easily prevent a clogged sink. If you’re questioning what foods you should absolutely avoid putting down the garbage disposal, we’ve created a list of the top five foods that are likely to create a troublesome clog.

1.    Grease

Grease is the number one no-no when it comes to garbage disposals.  It’s also the easiest to accidentally sneak down the drain.  Leftover grease or oil from frying or sautéing should be cooled and disposed of in the garbage and never put down the garbage disposal.  When grease or oil cools, it forms a thicker, more solid substance that can quickly clog pipes and your disposal. As an extra precaution, any time you suspect that a small amount of grease has escaped down your drain, run a significant amount of water after to try and flush out the grease or fat.

2.    Skins, Husks, Fibrous Vegetables

Many vegetables high in fiber have fibrous or stringy structures.  Corn husks, celery, onion skins, asparagus, and artichokes are great examples. The issue with these foods is that they can gum up the disposal’s motor blades, preventing them from their rapid fire rotation.  Without a properly working motor, the garbage disposal can’t function and will clog.

3.    Potatoes and Potato Peels

It’s tempting to peel potatoes directly over the sink and scrape the peels down the drain.  However, the starch in potatoes and peels creates a thick paste when mixed with water, creating a glue-like consistency that can clog up pipes and your disposal.  Peel potatoes over a garbage can or strainer instead and save yourself the hassle.

4.    Meat and Large Bones

Meat can clog a garbage disposal from many angles. Red meat, especially, tends to be higher in fat and can harden into a grease clog.  Raw muscle meat, which is the majority of meat we eat, is fibrous and stringy, risking wrapping around the disposals motor blades similar to the vegetables mentioned above.  Garbage disposal motors and blades aren’t big enough to chop large bones often used in stews and soups and some chicken dishes, so avoid putting those down the disposal.  Doing so will risk breaking the motor or blades from pressure and size.

5.    Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds are unique in that individually, their particle size is very small and grainy.  However, coffee grounds can accumulate in the garbage disposal and drain pipes under your sink and when mixed with water can cause a sludge-like material, clogging your pipes and disposal.  Dispose of coffee grounds in the garbage can and avoid the headache.
Avoiding these five foods will help ensure your garbage disposal will run efficiently. When putting any food down the disposal, it’s important to run cold water to prevent clogs as well.  If you’re concerned with your garbage disposal or have a clogged kitchen sink, Doc’s Appliance Service has trained professionals to unclog your drain.  We can also help you with replacing your garbage disposal.  Give Doc’s a call today for all of your disposal needs, at 800-726-7130.
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