For enjoyable home dining, a well-equipped kitchen is a necessity. One of the more basic appliances is the in-sink garbage disposer. Waste disposal machines lets you push food waste into a sink’s drain to be ground up and washed away. They allow you to dispose of leftovers and scraps without dumping them into trashcans, this freeing the kitchen of odors and clearing drains. The better models install easily and quietly work to grind finer wastes.
Home wastes may drain to municipal sewers for wastewater treatment, and cities with overburdened facilities may mandate composting waste or sending it to area landfills or incineration plants. Other communities with overrunning waste collection sites and landfills may incentivize homeowners to use garbage disposal units to process their wastes into the sewers instead.
But not all homes with septic systems are candidates for kitchen garbage disposers. The added volume of waste may require pumping the septic tank more often to keep it from overflowing. Some disposers do work with septic systems by injecting solutions which accelerate decomposition.
Types of Garbage Disposers
Continuous feed. A continuous feed garbage disposer is operated by running your faucet, turning on the unit, then begin pushing food waste and scraps into the drain and grinder below it. These are easy to use, but non-waste items may drop into the unit and require risky retrieval by hand, a problem particularly for small children.
Batch feed. These types lower the risk of the grinder running when a non-waste object or hand is inside its chamber, for it will activate only after waste is pushed into the grinder and the drain covered with the magnetic lid. Batch feed units are slower than continuous feed types, but they have advantages in kitchens with low-flow faucets and slow-draining sinks.
Powerful operation is important, but a quality appliance will last years longer at this stressful task. Cheaper ones built of plastic and galvanized steel components just aren’t as durable as stainless steel models. Warranties may indicate a model’s expected lifespan, so shop accordingly.
- Enough horsepower. It’s important to choose a garbage disposal unit with the horsepower to process the biggest waste output of your busiest days.
- Easy installation. Most home garbage disposers are installable by the average DIY buyer, but some are easier to emplace than others.
- Safety features. A batch feed unit may be the best choice with small children in the house. Homes with septic systems instead of sewer connections would require septic-ready disposer.
- Quiet running. Better models produce little enough vibration and noise that they normally won’t interrupt normal conversation.
- Good warranty. A malfunctioning unit leaves users with a useless sink and the potential for water damage in the kitchen, good warranty service gives peace of mind.
- Quality materials. Units with stainless steel grinder mechanisms usually last longer than the same made of galvanized steel or a combination of lesser materials.
- Removable splashguard. The feature keeps food waste from spattering the area, the more convenient types can be lifted for sink cleaning.
- Appropriate sizing. More powerful garbage disposers normally have bigger chambers and housings. A kitchen with less space under the sink may only accommodate units with more compact designs.
Most garbage disposers are designed with mounts which are easy to work with by the average DIY homeowner. Some models have to be wired directly into the wall, while others may require drain piping to be extended or reduced. Budget extra for professional installation.
Certain stringy and tough food waste like carrot tops, celery, or bones are harder to grind up, so look for a higher-horsepower unit to handle those.
More powerful and bigger units take up more space under sinks, so ensure a disposer has enough room underneath for it to vibrate less and be quieter in operation, and for its installation be less leak-prone. For limited space there are small-profile models which can be a better fit.