Zeek Plumbing is ready to serve you! Call (866) 635-0200 now to book your service appointment!

ZEEK'S BLOG

ALL POSTS

10 Things to Avoid Putting in Garbage Disposals

Disposal Basics

corroded garbage disposal
Corroded garbage disposal

Garbage disposals were designed to break up all different types of food waste. They can be a great addition to any kitchen sink due to their convenience. However, there are definitely items that will cause damage to the blades or clog your drain if added to the garbage disposal. They typically give the consumer the confidence to put any and everything down the drain. No matter how powerful the disposal is, it cannot break up all of the waste. Please be wary of flushing the following items down your drain:

Coffee Grounds

Contrary to popular belief, adding coffee grounds to your garbage disposal is a recipe for a clog. As any avid coffee drinker will notice, the grounds clump together when wet in the coffee machine filter, which is exactly what happens inside your drain. The disposal can break it up a little bit, but they can clump back together again further down the drain line.

Garbage

Despite having garbage in the name, garbage disposals are not meant to break up things typically found in the trash can. Any paper towels, tissues, paper, plastic, bags, etc. will clog your drain or get tangled in the blades. Save yourself the hassle, and make sure to throw out any garbage.

Bones

Garbage disposals contain blades to break waste and debris up. However, the blades are not nearly strong enough to break up bones from any meat products. After the big football game or party, please refrain from putting the chicken wings down the disposal, and instead throw them right in the trash

Pasta

A standard rule of thumb is avoiding flushing anything that can expand when wet down the drain. Pasta becomes very hard for a garbage disposal to deal with and often gets tangled between the blades. This causes a clog to form before it even reaches the drain.

Nuts

Do not put any type of nuts down a garbage disposal. It will turn the nuts and your drain into a jar filled with peanut butter. The blades will break down the nuts and cause them to line your drain, which can also attract unwanted guests (insects/drain flies).

Fruit Pits

Similar to bones and other strong solids, fruit pits are very difficult for the blades to break down. Rather than taking the risk of putting them into the garbage disposal, putting them into the trash is always the safer decision.

Fibrous Fruits or Vegetables

Celery, asparagus, and other vegetables filled with fiber are never meant to be put down garbage disposals. The string-like fibers get caught in the blades and become entangled causing clogs and backups. Removing them is simply not worth the hassle, and should just be composted or put in the trash.

Grease

grease clog
Grease clog that Zeek Plumbing recently cleared.

One of the most common causes of clogged drains is grease. As it cools, grease will solidify inside the drain. Cooking oil, butter, lard, and any other fatty liquid leftover from cooking all fall into this category. Safe disposal methods include pouring liquid grease into another container such as a bottle or milk cartoon, putting the container into a zip lock bag, and throwing it in the trash. Do not under any circumstances pour grease/oil down the drain because it may make it through yours, but it can clog neighbors’ sewer lines or even make it to the local water system. 

Eggshells

Zeek Plumbing recommends to steer clear of adding eggshells to your garbage disposal. Typically, there are 2 schools of thought regarding eggshells. Some think they help clean and sharpen the blades. Others think the membrane from the shells can get stuck and cause clogs. Some eggs here and there will not do any harm. If you are constantly adding eggs, then over time an issue will arise.

Potato Peels

Similar to the eggs, putting potato peels in the garbage disposal from time to time will not cause damage. However, always putting every potato peel down the drain is not ideal. They have a very high starch content which causes the peels to turn into a thick mush inside your drains. Potato peels are better off in the compost or thrown away in the trash.

Now you may be asking what can I actually put down my garbage disposal? 

Lemon and citrus rinds are perfect because they leave a pleasant smell behind. Leftover cooked meat can be processed, but try to make sure they are smaller pieces. Smaller pieces of fish, and fish bones can be broken down by the disposal. A general rule to follow would be any product that is biodegradable can be flushed down the garbage disposal.

If any serious issues or clogs form, please contact the professionals. Grease can be a nightmare to unclog due to the fact the drain may need to be removed before clearing. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, please contact our Zeek Plumbing office at 866-635-0200.

5-STAR GOOGLE REVIEWS FROM OUR CUSTOMERS

Great customer service. I had a problem with my toilet and they came out the same day to repair. Would definitely recommend
Frank D.
I had an emergancy and Zeek took care of it immediately and on short notice. Technicians were very proffessional. I will definetly use them again and will recomnend them to friends and family. Thier pricing was great also.
Michael A.
We highly recommend Zeek Plumbing! Within 24 hours of calling, Tim and Oliver arrived on time to replace our hot water heater and they were professional, polite and thorough. They worked quick (not fast) and clean and also corrected the prior improper installation of the overflow tank. Ryan even followed up to ensure we were happy and finalized all necessary paperwork. Everyone went above and beyond our expectations. Great job Zeek Plumbing, thank you!
Mary Alice S.
I recently had an almost fully clogged kitchen sink drain. I called Zeek Plumbing early in the morning and got a recording. I decided to not leave a message and would call back later. They took it upon themselves to call me back after seeing my number in their missed calls log. I explained the situation and was told they'd take care of it within a week; they arrived later that afternoon. The technician, Tim, and his partner (I unfortunately did not catch his name), worked incredibly hard to unclog the drain. They used multiple augers and auger heads, eventually running the snake 56 feet into the line until they finally were able to break through the clog after nearly three hours. Other technicians would likely have given up after a couple tries and recommend digging up the pipe, but Tim and his partner kept at it until the job was done. Tim asked me two or three times if I was satisfied with the job before he left. Pure professionalism all around. It got pricey in the end, but you get what you pay for. I couldn't recommend them more.
Michael T.
Thank you, Zeek Plumbing, for your quick response and excellent service on a water heater installation from June 2022.Tim came out the same day that I called when our hot water heater sprung a leak making a mess of the basement (other local companies I had called stated they were unable to come until 1-2 days later). He was so kind & knowledgeable! We had the choice to replace parts on our old unit, and possibly have to wait 2+ weeks for parts due to COVID supply chain issues, or replace the unit entirely. Tim took the time to explain the pros & cons to both without pressuring us. Steve gave us a quote over the phone and ultimately we chose to replace with a new Bradford White. Richard & Oliver showed up the following morning at 8AM. Service was quick, they left the area clean, and price was fair.
Jeannette F.
I had a good experience with Zeek. I contacted them to install a water softener. They put me in touch with the supplier, who tested by water and recommended a system. Then Zeek installed it. Rich patiently walked me through the ins-and-outs, and they were finished in just a few hours.I note that Zeek had to push back the installation date because they were late ordering of the water softener. But they apologized, set a new date, and got it all done. We all make mistakes; but it's those (like Zeek) that take responsibility and fix the issue that deserve repeat business.I'm already contacting Zeek again for other work that needs doing!
JC C
I had Zeek plumbing come. A guy Bill came and realized he could not do the job since cabinet had tiny opening for tiny person so he called another staff member to come. He knew exactly what the problem was . At first I thought maybe he did not want to do job or I had to call another company. I said to myself let me see and got call stating Oliver was going to do it but Tim would also help. They both came out and I liked both of them. They were both very nice , professional and fixed the problem . They were their for about an hour and a half and ended out charging me they said for 1 hour. I will know for sure when I get a bill from credit card , they gave me no paper statement or bill just told me verbally what I was going to be charged . I was recommended to use this company from my electrician . I recommend that a plumber always put paper or plastic boots on in front of customer. Their boots can really make marks on floors or carpet . Most customers would appreciate this and it is also a sign of respect for property . I recommend this company and would use them again soon .
shari G.
Zeek Plumbing's crew was on time, and fixed every issue I had. Reasonably priced and easy to communicate with. Nice, neat and knowledgeable guys. THANK YOU!
Manny R.
My new go-to for any plumbing needs. Everything about this experience was perfect. Bill was great!
Chris T.
Steve and his crew responded in hours. Bill was incredibly knowledgeable and courteous. Could not have been happier!!!
maureen D.
Had a great experience today with Zeek plumbing. Rich and Nick stopped by because my boiler was smoking and releasing smell into the basement. Turns out there were a few other things wrong with it. It’s a 30 year old unit that needs replacing but that’s not going to be for a while so I really needed the service. My appointment was scheduled for 8am and they were here at 7:53 which was great. Rich showed me everything he was doing as he fixed things and did his best to explain everything to me although honestly everything went right over my head. Still though I highly appreciated the explanation of everything! I’m happy to say that the boiler is running like a brand new unit. No odor, no delay and it was all done very quickly! I think the price was reasonable considering they were here for two hours. Also thought it was awesome that Rich played with my Dog and pet my ferret! Haha anyhow. I highly recommend these guys, very high level of professionalism. I had another company come out a few months ago for similar issue and it was not fixed at all… and the other things that Rich identified that should have been fixed were left to rot essentially. Anyway I highly recommend Zeek for your plumbing needs. They did a great job.
Leo S.
I highly recommend using Zeek Plumbing & Mechanical. They respond quickly to phone calls, are punctual and very knowledgeable about all aspects of your plumbing needs and concerns. Rich is personable and is an expert at completing the job from start to finish.
Geri

NJ's Trusted Team of Plumbers

Proudly serving residential and commercial customers throughout Morris County and all of New Jersey.