How To Clean A Smelly Garbage Disposal

By Robert Robillard on Kitchens

How To Clean A Smelly Garbage Disposal

How to Clean a Garbage Disposal

When I was a college student one of my summer jobs was working for the city rubbish removal, throwing trash barrels into the back of a rubbish truck.  Back then I thought I’d never smell anything as heinous as what that job threw at me.

While that is mostly true, once in awhile my kitchen sink drain and disposal come close to that old rubbish smell. This article will discuss a few tip and tricks I’ve learn along the way on how to clean a smelly garbage disposal.

How To Clean A Smelly Garbage Disposal

The simplest technique for cleaning a smelly disposal involves ice cubes.  Here’s how I do it:

  1. Turn the cold water and the disposal.
  2. Empty a dozen or two ice cubes into the sink, and push the ice cubes down the drain into the disposal as quickly as it will take it. This will freeze all the stuck debris, causing it to chunk off the impeller blades and out of the holes in the plate/flywheel. Which is often the cause of the offensive odor.
  3. Let the water run for a full minute after the last cube is clear.
  4. If the garbage disposal still smells, slice a lemon in half and feed both halves down into the drain.

Why Lemon?

Lemon, and other citrus fruits all have rough peels which help to clean the impeller blades, and citrus oils do a fantastic job of naturally freshening things up.

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About the author

Robert Robillard

Carpenter / Remodeler / Editor

Rob Robillard is “The Concord Carpenter” Rob is a builder, general contractor, carpenter, woodworker, and editor of Concord Carpenter and ToolBoxBuzz As a General Contractor and carpenter, Rob owns and operates Concord Carpenter LLC. A full-service remodeling and construction company. Rob is a recognized leader in home building best practices and a source for how-to information for building professionals. On this website, Rob covers all aspects of home construction, building science, home improvement, woodworking, remodeling, and some of the best product and tool reviews. Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review series - Concord Carpenter Videos where we post all of our tool reviews and video tutorials. Rob approaches remodeling and building construction with a pragmatic and problem-solving approach. He enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate building professionals as well as DIYers on best practices in the construction and remodeling industry. He's a strong advocate for "raising the bar" in the construction trades and promoting the trades to youth. #BeAMentor #Green2Great Craftsmanship, quality, and pride guide his journey on this channel The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

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