My GE Disposall hums but the spinning part doesn't budge.
I can't see any junk in there that would stop the spinning.
I couldn't get it going with a broomstick -- the broomstick can't even
rotate the thing either.
There is no wrench-socket on the bottom to get the mechanism moving.
What do I try next?
Do what Oren said. But, he said "blades", which is OK since that describes
their function as we see it. The manual from my Insinkerator called them
"hammers", a word they might've chosen so you wouldn't think these pivoting
things are sharp. They're not. Reach into the disposal and feel each hammer.
I'll bet you'll find that they're not all stuck. Some may swivel, so you'll
have a sense of what should be happening. Find the one that does not swivel,
and you may feel whatever foreign object has got that hammer wedged against
the side of the cylinder.
Or, just replace it, like Bob said. Like tools and fishing tackle, these
things should never be included in any written budget you may keep.
Look down in the hole with a flashlight. In the center of the rotator,
there is a nut, 9/16", I believe. Take a socket with a long extension on it
and try to put it on the nut and twist backwards. Sometimes, a very small
piece can stop the rotator. The fact that it hums is a good sign. Look
closer for an Allen head recession in the bottom of the unit. If yours does
not have one, it's quite unusual. If the socket thing doesn't work, you may
try a very large screwdriver, or anything you can get wedged in the blades
down there to twist it backwards. Try to retrieve whatever it is that is
causing this, as even if it gets freed up, the spinning can cause it to
punch a hole through the side of the case. Don't ask me how I know.
I had one jam. I backed it up with a ratchet, and turned it on. It
clattered a little, then just spun and purred like a kitten. Next day, wife
says water under sink. I look, and found a hole in the outside casing from
where the rotor had spun the offending piece of material out to the outer
casing (plastic) and punched a dime size hole in it.
Point is, if I had looked in there and fished it out with a pair of forceps,
I would have saved the cost of a new disposal.
So, even though it spins, you want to get out whatever has enough strength
to stop an electric motor, because with the momentum, when it gets jammed in
the right place, something's gotta give.
GE machines were not same as Insinkerator
and didn't have wrench port.
GE also made a number of different models,
some good and some errrrr... not so good.
If you have one of the budget models made
of carbon steel, it may not be repairable.
Look up the model # and Google that for info.
Don't force it or you will break it. I fixed one that acted just like
yours. I took a flashlight and a pickup tool and took out a penney that
had gotten in there and jammed the spinner against the side. Look for a
tiny hard object. Look carefully all around the disk.
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