Ever wondered what not to put down a garbage disposal? Like what food not to put in a garbage disposal? Yeah, me too! I’ve unfortunately put many of the things on this list down the drain.
Below you’ll find a list of what not to put in a garbage disposal so you’ll have a good idea of what to stay away from. A lot of people think that you can just dump food scraps down the drain, but not all food waste is meant to go down the kitchen sink.
A garbage disposer can be a great addition to your kitchen, but you still have to use some common sense. (because if not you’ll be spending big bugs for the garbage disposal repair man!)
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Whether you’re trying to live a frugal lifestyle or just want to make sure that all your appliances and kitchen facilities keep working at their best for as long as possible- you need to keep an eye on what goes down the drain and what you put in the garbage disposal in your home.
A lot of times, we tend to ignore and put things into the garbage disposal that actually shouldn’t be put down there, but, unless you want a hefty plumbing bill, so should probably start paying attention to it! Make sure you know what not to put in a garbage disposal.
What Not to Put in Garbage Disposal
1. Cooking Oils
Literally, all of your foods will have cooking oil and grease, but make sure you never throw the excess oil down the drain. It may seem convenient to put it down the garbage disposal since oil is a liquid, but don’t ever do it since oils tend to thicken inside and then clog the drain.
Unclogging a drain can take up a lot of your time and/or money.
Make sure you never put the grease from meats, gravies and poultry into your garbage disposal too.
Most times a clogged garbage disposal can be because of grease or super fatty foods! Vegetable oil is a HUGE culprit as well as bacon grease. Be careful with meat scraps as they can release grease that can be like a thick paste on the inside of your pipes!
2. Egg Shells
Avoid dumping egg shells into your garbage disposal- instead, use them for a compost.
Eggshells may come off as easy to break and fragile, but they tend to stick to the corners of your drain pipe and to other waste, and eventually, it forms a clog which then clogs your drain pipe.
I know this first hand as my husband loves putting eggs shells in the garbage disposal…
This is the last thing that you want to have in your plumbing system and plumbing pipes – and it’s a common one. It’s because the small pieces just get down into the garbage disposal unit and cause big issues. It’s a bad idea – and has an ever worse smell!
Dumping all your old and expired medicines down the drain may seem like a not-so-bad thing to do, but make sure you never do it, and never ever flush them down the toilet.
Doing so can have a negative impact on the water bodies near you.
Instead, grab them all and hand them over to a local pharmacy for them to dispose of it safely with the waste they already have.
Pasta, whether cooked or uncooked, is a big no-no for your garbage disposal. This is because pasta tends to expand when it comes in contact with water, and you wouldn’t want it to swell up inside your drain pipe and cause a clog now, would you?
Throw the excess pasta you might have in the trash instead.
I know this one can be hard as we often drain pasta in the sink, so try to be intentional with all other pasta in the sink.
5. Potato Peels
You may have come across some DIY posts and recipes that teach you how to make your own glue using potatoes. Well, now you know why you shouldn’t put potato peels down the drain!
When potatoes come in contact with water, they turn into glue and stick to the drain, which can eventually cause serious damage. As time passes, the peels will turn to starch and harden your drain.
It’s a good rule of thumb to just peel the potatoes on paper towels and toss them right in the trash.
What Not to Put in Garbage Disposal List
Along with the above items, make sure you never dump these things into your garbage disposal:
- paints (which tend to stick to the corners of the pipes)
- shells of seafood
- rice and beans
- seeds and pits of fruits
- coffee grounds
- small bones/turkey bones
- raw meats
Also, a general rule of thumb is that if I’m unsure, I just don’t. The last thing I want to deal with is a clogged drain or to create garbage disposal problems. If I think that the blades of the disposal can’t handle it, I move on and toss it into the trash or the compost pile.
Leave some items for the trash, and avoid your impulse to just dump everything into the drain – your kitchen (and wallet) will thank you for it!
If you are noticing your garbage disposal is not working properly or your garbage disposal smells, then you should probably take some time to clean it!
Follow the instructions in my post on how to clean a garbage disposal. The post also has tips on how to regularly sharpen garbage disposal blades and how to deodorize a garbage disposal too. You can also download some handy checklist printables in the form below!