Garbage Disposal Not Smelling So Fresh?

The Ups and Downs of Garbage Disposals

There’s no denying the convenience of having a garbage disposal in your kitchen. It makes the process of so many activities an easy task in the kitchen. Frequent use of the appliance, however, can usually lead to damage and foul odors.

If you’ve recently noticed an alarming odor emerging from your kitchen sink, don’t freak out—fixing it is easier than you think! Ridding your garbage disposal of that horrid smell is not rocket science. In fact, we can bet that many of the items you need to clear that unwanted smell can already be found in your kitchen cupboards.

Though a garbage disposal was designed to pulverize and remove kitchen garbage obtained from food products, fruit skins, and vegetables, we all know that such items are still vulnerable to getting stuck in the nooks and crannies of your garbage disposal.

garbage-disposal_360The nooks and crannies are a perfect haven for bacteria and molds to grow, creating unwanted odors as well as unhealthy mycelial structures. Initially, you might not necessarily smell anything but given substantial time characterized by no routine cleaning, the overwhelming odor will come out stronger, as the molds and bacteria continue to multiply in numbers.

Cleaning your disposal at least twice a week will help to keep your unit free of molds and bacteria which produces odors as they metabolize the waste materials. It is also imperative that you use soapy detergents and hot water as such that will break up grease and oily garbage deposited in the disposal.

Always keep in mind that it is the kitchen oils and grease that will harden in your drains, clogging materials inside the drain. Run water while operating your disposal as this will keep the drain clear and clean.

Water and Bleaching Agent

Using a basin, you are supposed to prepare a mixture of one gallon of water and a teaspoon of chlorine or calcium hypochlorite bleach. Pour the stirred solution down the drain pipe into the disposal, allowing the content to sit for several minutes. You will then flush the drain with water until the smell starts to diminish. The bleach will not only kill the bacteria and eliminate the smells, it will also harden any grease inside the drain.

Citrus Deodorizing

cut_up_some_citrus_480If you are looking for a natural freshener for you disposer, then citrus is your best choice. Citrus is contained in fruits including lemons, oranges, and limes. Their peels also contains a sufficient amount of citric acid to help kill odors in your disposal.

The acid in the fruits will also help disinfect the grinding blades and disposal walls and their characteristic citrusy smell will surround your kitchen, eliminating any anxiety and stress you may have the next time you are cooking in your kitchen.

Ice and salt

Apart from citrus and dish washing soaps, the next best thing that you can use is ice cubes and rock salt. Both will be useful in unclogging any disgusting food particles that are stuck in between the nooks, blades or the disposal walls. The ice cubes will function in sharpening the blades while the salt will kill bacteria and molds that are multiplying inside the garbage disposal. In case you don’t have the sea salt, the rock salt or table salt will do magic for you.

Baking soda

Baking soda (a naturally occurring mixture of sodium carbonate and sodium hydroxide) is not just good enough for neutralizing odors in carpets, refrigerators and underarms, it works equally perfect on a garbage disposal. All you need to do is pour a little bit down the drain of your garbage disposal and flush with some warm water after several minutes of sitting. The bicarbonate portion of the soda will react with the odors, forming odorless compounds.


Vinegar is preferred to remove long lasting putrid stenches. It is used together with baking soda and citric acid to effectively isolate long-term smells.

The chemical reaction with the vinegar solution will loosen up any signs of nastiness inside your garbage disposal, eliminating any smells from the unit. Rinsing thoroughly with warm water after deodorizing with vinegar is necessary, as such will prevent further clogging.

Maintaining Your Disposal Unit

pouring-baking-soda-down-the-garbage-disposal_360It is never a good idea to put grease into the disposal as it is not only a reason behind the clogging but also makes things smell horrible. The grease will congeal in time as it comes in contact will all kinds of food materials. Avoid putting large items as well as sticky foods like shrimp, honey, eggs and fish down your disposal as well. Finally, while coffee grounds may prove useful in deodorizing other devices in your home like, for instance, the freezer and the fridge, avoid using them in your disposal as grounds will build up on your disposal’s pipes.

These tips are all natural home remedies that will not only save you money but will keep your garbage disposal unit in great shape and smelling like new for years to come! Maintenance and education are everything in the world of plumbing and if you can master these skills now, you’ll save yourself a lot of headaches as you manage your home.
However, should none of these methods adequately address your disposal issue, it might be time to consult a professional local plumber who will be able to take a deeper look at your disposal for both odor issues and performance issues, as well.

For the best plumbing services in your Shawnee, KS home, call KB Complete Plumbing, Heating and Cooling, Inc., at (913) 722-6835, we will be glad to assist you!