We got something stuck in the Insinkerator. From the sound of it, I
think it's a small metal object. I can turn it using the hex-tool
inserted into the bottom of the unit, and it works for a few minutes
then locks up again.
Can I fix it by taking it apart from the bottom, leaving the unit in
place? Or do I have to take the unit out and take it apart? Can I
even fix it at all?
Thanks a heap,
Flashlight, long needle nosed pliers or some sort of clamping device,
If you can move it with the wrench, it is not stuck but flying around. It
may be tiny. Take a very careful look around, especially the outer edges of
the grinding plate.
This exact same thing happened to our garbage disposal this past
summer: a child had dropped the pop tab from a soda can down there,
and it jammed the disposal. I had to feel around to find it and
remove it with my fingers.
Buy a long pair of hemostats the next time you're at the swap meet. And a
little flashlight. I also find it handy to have a ratchet with a long
extension so that I can turn the bottom plate from the top while I'm looking
for the offending particle. Some disposals do not have a nut on top, others
do. Having it dark in the room helps some, too.
Rueful chuckle. BTDT, multiple times. In the apartment I lived in before
buying this place, there was a tiny 'breakfast bar' counter right over
the sink. It happened to be the natural place to empty my pockets after
work. Sometimes the coins would bounce out of the little metal dish I
used to stage pocket change in. Recurring 'aw shit' moments of a minor
nature. Got pretty good at getting the coins out from the top. If
everything was dry, a folded-inside-out wrap of duct tape on the end of
stick worked rather well.
This house doesn't even have a disposal, and much to my surprise, after
the first 2-3 months, I didn't even miss it. (It dates from the days
when they wouldn't put disposals on septic tank houses....) If I stay
here long enough to redo kitchen, I may add one.
Interesting. My mother bought us a house in 1957 that had a septic
tank and a garbage disposal. We'd never had one before and didn't
know it wasn't supposed to make very loud bearing noises. But it
sounded wrong so she never used it.
It also had an incinerator, and she would dry out the vegetable and
other wet garbage until it would burn with the newspapers, so as not
to have to run the gas that heat the incinerator, not even the pilot
All that was left was 3 or 4 vegetable cans a week, and my mother
opened the cans at both ends, then crushed the cans and they took up
barely any space. I think the garbage collection was private and our
next door neighbor had offered that she could put stuff in his
garbage, so it was just those crushed cans.
My father had died and this is how she saved money, and avoided waste.
The house had a dishwasher too, and we'd never had one, didn't know
anyone who had, and didn't know that steam wasn't supposed to come out
from three sides when it was running. She didn't use that either.
But the house was great anyhow.
Had a patio built over the septic tank, with a 3 foot circle above the
tank for access. I know one's not supposed to do that, but we don't
know that then. But she got in and got out 10 years later without
having to rip up the patio.
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