The garbage disposal does not last forever, but it may last a good number of years if you install it accurately, use it properly and maintain appropriately. According to the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, a typical kitchen garbage disposer lasts for 12 years, based upon normal wear and tear of the unit and not neglect, overuse or abuse of the disposer.
There are some distinct signs which may give you clues about the condition of your disposal. Then you could decide what to do – need to replace or repair. You might consider replacing your disposal if you notice the following situations.
If it clogs or jams frequently
You are always taking care of your disposal by running water for at least 20 seconds during use and after the use, disposing of small scraps of food items, avoiding putting the items which may clog the disposals , and follow the instructions of the manufacturer, etc. But still you are suffering for frequent clogging; it may be the time for install a new Garbage disposal for your Kitchen.
Failed to turn on the disposal
If you switch on the disposal, but nothing happens, then there is a problem. Now try to identify the reason:
Check the circuit breaker or fuse connected to the disposal,
Hit the reset button on a nearby outlet or flips a larger switch of the circuit breaker box.
Try to turn on the disposal again.
You fail to turn on, then check the interior if anything has jammed the blades. If there is no problem found, then your garbage disposal has probably burned out and may need to be replaced.
Need to reset every time you use the disposal
If you need to switch on the reset button frequently, then either you have insufficient wiring, or the disposal has started to age. If the plumber says that your disposal has worn out after inspection, then you should have a new disposal.
Can’t get rid of odors
You may be frustrated after cleaning your disposal with ice cubes, baking soda and vinegar, citrus peels, and other recommended ways but the odor is still lingering. Then call a professional for help. Sometimes you may consider having a new disposal to eliminate the bad smell.
Taking more time to break down the food
If you notice that your disposal is taking more time than required to grind the scraps and getting frequent clogs, it may indicate that the blades are no longer sharp and you should replace the unit.
Have a leak but failed to fix
Most of the leaks can be fixed, but if it comes from a crack in the device, it is time to replace the old garbage disposal. Besides, some leaks can be fixed, but they are complicated and costly, in such cases, it is better to get a new one than repairing the old disposal.
When replacing kitchen sink or dishwasher
While you are replacing your sink or updating the kitchen appliances, it may be the right time to replace your garbage disposal if it is already more than ten years old.
Loud Metal-on-Metal Noise When It Runs
If your disposal begins to make a sound like metal on metal when it runs, it may be because of the parts having started to move incorrectly. So it needs to tune-up. Otherwise, the motor could burn out, or the parts could wear too much for which the garbage disposal may need to replace.
It is better to replace the garbage disposal when it is over ten year age. But if you need to replace it within a very short time span after installation, then maybe you are not taking a good care of it. To lengthening the lifespan of your disposal you should follow some rules.
Always keep in mind that your garbage disposal is not a trash can. You should only put the biodegradable foods in your garbage disposal like bread, rice, cereal, egg shells, a small amount of meat, and small pieces of vegetables, etc. Avoid putting animal bones, coffee grounds, plastic, paper, glass, starches, fat, grease, anything sticky, etc. Always run water while grinding because water helps to lubricate the mechanism, saving wear and tear on the blades and grinders. Use cold water to prevent fats from melting inside.
If any particles like fork, knife, etc. fall accidently down the disposal, then at first ensure that the power is off and use a pair of tongs but never stick your hand into the disposal.
To prevent bad odor use citrus peels, white vinegar, cold water, ice cubes, hot water, etc. Do not pour corrosive chemicals such as bleach, ammonia, chemical cleaner down the drain. These kinds of chemicals may corrode the system.
You should follow the instructions of the manual and install your disposal by the professionals. If you maintain your disposal properly, you may need not to consider an early replacement of your garbage disposal.