Finding a garbage disposal leak
Finding a garbage disposal leak
A leaking garbage disposal brings with it a substantial amount of safety hazards and is not something you want to delay fixing. According to Red Beacon, a website that connects homeowners to service professionals, when a garbage disposal leaks, it exposes the residents of a home to harmful bacteria. That waste you have been steadily discarding after cooking dinner every night is now seeping back into your kitchen, which can lead to the presence of unwanted germs and can also make your kitchen appealing to pests and insects.
To get that leak taken care of fast, the first thing you have to do is figure out where it’s coming from. A garbage disposal has a few different trouble spots that could be causing the leak.
Before you start checking for the source of the leak, make sure you have completely turned off the disposal – as in you have shut off the electrical power that runs into the unit. Garbage disposals can cause serious injuries, so it is imperative you take this precaution.
Cracked, loose or broken drain lines
There will be between one and two drain lines connected to your garbage disposal. One is the drainpipe connected to the sewer, which all garbage disposals have, and one will be the line connected to your dishwasher, which is optional. To determine if one of these is causing the leak, simply take a look at them and try to find any cracks, loose screws or other damage.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, if there is a crack in the dishwasher hose, you may simply be able to cut if off, since hoses are typically quite long. Unscrew the hose and then use a utility knife to cut off the end up to the cracked point. Then screw it back in and place the clamp back on.
If the drainpipe leading to the sewer is cracked or broken, Red Beacon said you will probably have to replace it. It is possible, however, that the bolts in the pipe are simply loose, and if that’s the case they may just need to be tightened.
According to Texas-Based Pippin Brothers Home Services, if the leak is coming from the side of the disposal, it is probably due to an issue with one of your drain lines.
Problems with the sink flange or putty
If your garbage disposal is leaking from the top, it might be an issue with your sink flange (which connects the sink and the garbage disposal) or the putty that seals it. According to Pippin Brothers, not all garbage disposals use putty to seal the flange. Some flanges are kept in place with screws. If that is the case and the disposal is still leaking from the top then the flange, itself is probably the source of the leak and needs to be replaced. Otherwise, remove the garbage disposal from the sink, clear away the worn-out putty and reseal the flange with brand new putty.
Red Beacon explained that there is a gasket that rests between the garbage disposal blades and the sink, and if this becomes cracked or worn it can cause a leak. You will have to take the garbage disposal apart to check the gasket. If it is causing the leak, replace it.
Trouble finding the source of your garbage disposal leak? Why not hire a professional to find it for you?
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