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How to Eliminate Garbage Disposal Odors: Follow These 9 Proven Ways

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Garbage disposal is the most efficient mechanism you can’t afford to work without in your kitchen. It grinds all the kitchen waste and keeps your sink spotless clean and tidy. When the garbage disposal has subjected too many edible leftovers from the kitchen, some of this waste’s remains accumulate in its drain pipes over time. This residue of spoiled food welcomes the bacteria that produce an unpleasant odor.

There’s no need to fret about the odor coming from your garbage disposal. Sure, the smell makes it difficult for you to work in your kitchen, but the good news is that this unprocessed rotten food stuck in the blades of your garbage disposal can be taken care of in various ways.

What Causes a Garbage Disposal to Stink?

Before we move on to answer the big question of how to eliminate garbage disposal odors, we need to understand the problem that causes this pungent stench in a little more detail. There’s a chance that this odor results from a specific incident, for instance, disposing of the leftovers of a meal that used ingredients with a strong scent like garlic and onions. But at times, your garbage disposal doesn’t give you a warning and starts to stink all of a sudden. Whatever the case is, you must know how to eliminate garbage disposal odor before it diffuses to the entire kitchen.

Now let’s get to some of the most compelling and proven ways to kill the foul odor coming from your kitchen garbage disposal. Following these remedies will surely keep your garbage disposal and kitchen smelling fresh. However, it’s only fair to confirm that these remedial measures are compatible with your kitchen garbage disposal before you implement them on it.

1- Using Lemons

garbage disposal odors

When nature has given you lemons, you need not worry about garbage disposal odors. Cut this acidic fruit into small pieces and toss it down your garbage disposal when you’re grinding the kitchen waste. The acid of lemon in its natural state cuts all the rotting grease and oils in your garbage disposal. The same trick can be applied by using oranges, grapefruit, or fresh lime. These citrus fruits have scents that are capable of neutralizing even the strongest stenches. However, using lemons is one of the most affordable and convenient ways of dealing with the garbage disposal odor.

2- Ice Cubes

You might be surprised, but ice cubes are another way to get rid of the strong odor coming from your garbage disposal. Unlike citrus, ice won’t leave a pleasant fragrance behind, but as an added advantage, tossing ice down the garbage disposal will undoubtedly sharpen the grinding blades of your garbage disposal. Thus, you must have realized that knowing how to eliminate garbage disposal odor has some beneficial bonus features.

Ice can also be used in several other combinations to fight the unpleasant garbage disposal odor. Try one of these remedies:

  • Take two cups of ice cubes and one cup of rock salt and pour it in your garbage disposal. Then run some water and turn your garbage disposal. Let your garbage disposal grind for about 10 to 15 seconds. This combination of rock salt and the ice breaks up and releases any stuck remains or rotting particles of food in your garbage disposal. However, make sure you use hot water to clean your garbage disposal so that it prevents any grease from solidifying down your drain.
  • In case you run out of rock salt at your home, you can always use vinegar as its substitute. Pour two cups of ice cubes and one cup of vinegar down the garbage disposal and run water over it just like you did with the rock salt combination. The result of using vinegar is the same as using rock salt. Its combination with ice virtually eliminates all the bacteria and the rotting food inside your garbage disposal.

3- Baking Soda & Vinegar

Turns out how to eliminate garbage disposal odor wasn’t such a big problem, after all. There is a variety of cost-effective options and home remedies available to remove the scent. Another option that you can use is baking soda and vinegar. All you have to do is turn on your garbage disposal and pour one cup of distilled white vinegar along with a cup of dry baking soda. The chemical reaction that takes place wipes off all the rotting food debris in the garbage disposal and cleans the entire drain. It is a helpful and effective remedy because vinegar happens to be a natural bacteria killer and deodorizer.

4- Bleach

There’s no need to use powerful bleach for cleaning your garbage disposal. A mild one with a slight fragrance will be enough to get the job done. Running it down the garbage disposal with water will clean the entire drainage pipe and dislodge all the trapped food particles. The clean smell of bleach will take over the stench that had been bothering you for a while only.

5- Cleaning the Lid, Blades & the Drain

Not all the odors originate from deep down the garbage disposal. Cleaning the top lid of the garbage disposal with soap, brush, and water is also worth trying. There are food particles that, at times, get stuck at the very top of your garbage disposal and begin to rot if proper cleanliness is not being maintained.

Having a thorough knowledge of how to eliminate garbage disposal odor means you’ll ultimately gain control over the bothersome stench coming from your garbage disposal. Sometimes just regular cleaning removes such foul odors. That’s why, once you’re done with cleaning the top lid of your garbage disposal, you should clean its grinder blades next. For this purpose, you don’t have to purchase expensive cleaners from the market; the useful old household items will do the trick in no time. All you need for this is ice cubes, vinegar, rock salt, and baking soda.

The third and final stage of your cleaning procedure would be to clean the drain. There’s an easy trick of doing it that will ensure that the stuck food particles anywhere in the drain get washed away. It’s suggested that you plug your sink and fill it up with two to four inches of water. Then remove the plug. The moment you pull the plug, turn on the garbage disposal as well. The pressure built will now be released, and it will rinse away the entire pipe, clearing all the debris from the drain.

You can also use a dish brush or a wire brush to clean the inside of the garbage disposal unit. But you should make sure that you’ve turned off and unplugged the company before you insert your hand or a cleansing tool inside it. Taking a precaution in such a case is very important.

6- Home Improvement Products

Worrying about how to eliminate garbage disposal odor is useless. Even if you can’t use all these home remedies and can’t do all the extensive cleaning and maintenance work, there are various products available to clean and maintain your kitchen garbage disposal that you can buy and use. Check out your nearest home improvement store and see what products are available that can make your life easy. Moreover, if you’re purchasing these specific and convenient products to clean your garbage disposal, how about doing it more often so that it never comes to that stinking stage.

While talking about eliminating garbage disposal odor, your kitchen garbage disposal can undoubtedly benefit from being cleaned occasionally by using the certified products primarily made to kill the odorous bacteria and prevent drainage clogs. It is not the most cost-effective solution, but it indeed gives you the desired results. Moreover, it is advised that cleaning your garbage disposal properly once a week with any quality cleaning product will keep it running without any foul smells.

The Preventative Measures

Dealing with kitchen garbage disposals that emit an unpleasant odor can be frustrating. But this is something you have to sell. It’s inevitable if you have a garbage disposal installed in your kitchen sink. After a few months of use, your garbage disposal will trap food particles in its hard to reach places that will begin to rot and smell because of the bacteria. Thus, to be equipped with a better variety of ideas about eliminating garbage disposal odor, let’s now talk about the preventative ways to prevent your garbage disposal from stinking.

7- Stop Using Your Garbage Disposal Like a Trash Chute

Kitchen garbage disposals are excellent for disposing of a lot of unwanted edible items. But not everything should be tossed into them to avoid clogs and trapped food particles that will eventually begin to rot and smell. Here’s what you’re not supposed to grind in your garbage disposal:

  • Grease, oil, and fat-based products
  • Coffee grinds and other seeds
  • Pasta, rice, and other starchy food
  • Bones

Eggshells and fibrous vegetables are allowed but only occasionally and in small quantities. However, it is best to refrain from disposing of these items entirely because the eggshells’ remains will rot badly. The fiber of vegetables will get wrapped on the grinder blades causing your garbage disposal not to work correctly.

8- Always Make Your Garbage Disposal Run Longer

Instead of panicking about eliminating garbage disposal odor, you should avoid the chances of encountering such a problem. One of the preventative measures is recommended by plumbers who have to deal with such problems most of the time. These plumbers advise that you should run the grinder of your garbage disposal for an additional 5 to 10 seconds after you think the disposed of items would have been processed. It is necessary because even if you believe that your garbage disposal has finished doing its business, it hasn’t. Some particles and food debris are left, which begins to smell once bacteria settles in on it.

9- Routine Flushing

If you wait for your garbage disposal to start emitting foul odors that you can’t stand, then you’ll probably be one of those who get upset thinking about how to eliminate garbage disposal odor. So don’t let that moment come and go for preventative care.

It turns out, and hot water can be useful for preventing your garbage disposal from stinking. Run a thick stream of hot water for about a minute whenever you turn your garbage disposal. It would be enough to push the solidified grease contents out of your garbage disposal. This remedy even works when you’re already experiencing the stench in your garbage disposal.

The Importance of Eliminating the Garbage Disposal Odor

Once you’re made aware of the significance of killing the odor coming out of your kitchen garbage disposal, you’ll be inclined to practice all the remedies and preventative measures that have been included in this article. The need to figure out how to eliminate garbage disposal odor is essential because this stale and rancid smell can ruin your kitchen’s entire atmosphere. Moreover, it would help if you decided how to eradicate garbage disposal odor as soon as possible before the bacteria creates the perfect environment for the mold to grow in your kitchen.

Weekly cleaning is essential if you never want to do the tedious work of cleaning your kitchen garbage disposal. With the treatment remedies mentioned in this article, along with all the preventative measures, you can easily control the foul odors coming from your garbage disposal. You must also never forget to run water whenever you’re using the garbage disposal to keep the unit germ-free. And remember, these garbage disposals don’t respond nicely to abuse, so practice caution and think before you toss items into them.

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