The garbage disposal is an important tool in your kitchen. It removes unwanted food and debris from your kitchen sink easily. Without it you’d have to catch the debris in a strainer and throw it out. Most people use their garbage disposal every day so when there’s a problem it’s pretty obvious. Some garbage disposal problems are quick fixes, but others require the help of an experienced plumber. If you’re not sure whether or not your disposal is failing, check out this list to see if you have any of these typical disposal problems.

1. Slow drainage

If you’ve tried to run the disposal but it isn’t clearing debris and is leaving your kitchen sink backed up, your drain is probably clogged. At this point, we definitely do not recommend attempting to use chemical drain cleaners, because you will most likely have to clean out those toxic chemical manually. Call our experienced plumbers at Ben Franklin Plumbing, Cedar Rapids to have a technician open the disposal and check the problem safely.

2. Persistent Odor

Because the garbage disposal is used to get rid of food waste, it’s not entirely uncommon for foul smells to show up occasionally. If routine cleaning doesn’t eliminate odors, it may have food pieces stuck in the crevices of the appliance and you’ll likely need professional help form our trained plumbers to remove them.


If you’re finding puddles under your sink, or a drip from the garbage disposal you more than likely need a seal replaced. However, leaks are sometimes a symptom of a more serious problem with your disposal. It’s also easy to to mistake a dishwasher leak for a disposal leak, so its best to have a plumber come out and assess your system to identify and correct the problem.

4.Clanking Sounds

If you can turn on the disposal, but hear a loud clanking noise as it runs, you likely have a piece of metal stuck within the disposal that’s bouncing around the inside of the unit. It could be a blade that’s snapped off or trapped utensil.

5. Humming Sounds

If you can turn on the disposal, but hear a humming noise as it runs, it’s probably unable to rotate due to age, rust, or trapped food. If you hear a hum turn the unit off to protect the motor, and call our certified technicians to locate the frozen parts and fix it.

6.Frequent resets

If you have regularly rest your disposal for it to work, there is a greater problem. It could just be regular wear and tear, but in order to find out if you have another issue on your hands contact a professional to help.

A broken disposal can really slow a busy household down! Here at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Eastern Iowa, we are here to help get you running at full speed again. Contact us with any questions or schedule an appointment today!