kitchen garbage disposer problem


My insinkerator garbage disposer will not work. It put out a puff of smoke when I tried to restart it. Does this mean that it is burned out?
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there should be a hex key lug in the bottom of it so you can turn the blades manually. Make sure the blades turning freely.
Then check the breaker (the red button on the bottom). Push it in if it's "out".
outside of that, ya, I guess it's shot. Especially if it's smoking... but I can't imagine how you could get smoke from the drain, you should see it well up under your sink if anywhere.
pathsmith23 wrote:

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Actually it did come from under the sink. It was just a small puff and smelled electrical. The red reset button is not out and I was trying the use the hex wrench when the smoke came out. I immediately turned the wall switch off. I checked the outlet and it still works but when I flip the switch there is no sound. Is there some place on the disposer itself that I need to check? Thanks for your response.
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pathsmith23 wrote:

Did you free it up with the hex wrench yet?
Jeff
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I don't think it would be very safe to use the hex wrench while the power to it is on.
Bob
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Yes but when I turn it on there is no sound. The reset button is not "out". Should I just buy a new one, if so is it hard to install?
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The reset button on these doesn't really pop out when it shuts down. You have to press it pretty hard before it resets. Anyway, that's the way mine was.
pathsmith23 wrote:

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If the old disposal is 5, 10 or more years old, don't waste any more time it. Just replace. If it's relatively new, check out the warranty situation.
If it's in between those extremes, I'd lean towards getting a replacement since these units are not very expensive.
Installation is relatively straighforward for someone who has done a little plumbing and electrical work. However, if the new unit is different size and/or has slightly different geometry, you may have to rework the drain lines slightly to get everything hooked up. You'll need some basic plumbing tools and some plumbers putty. More if you have to replace part of the drain lines and/or fittings.
Installation is well beyond the capabilities of many otherwise intelligent people (including my wife and my Dad).
Unless you have some relevent experience with plumbing and electrics or are willing to invest the time taking this very slowly and learning all you can along the way, I'd be inclined to get it done professionally. Many of the places selling these units offer a fixed price installation service option (e.g. Sears).
You should be able to get a decent mid-range disposal (including installation) for around $200.
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That's because all the smoke got out. Once the smoke is released, most motors are crap. (larger industrial motors can be rebuilt and have the smoke re-charged)
Allow a couple of hours to put in a new one. They are not difficult to do and since most are made by the same company, the drain line will probably line up as well. The most difficult part is working under the sink and lifting the new one into place from an awkward position.
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For what it's worth, after much struggling I finally got over the problem of trying to hold the disposal in place while hooking it up. Got one of the small jacks out of the car and used it to lift and hold the disposal in place. Have to be very careful that you don't lift too high and screw up the sink. MLD

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