How to Clean a Garbage Disposal

Fix a smelly garbage disposal

Does your kitchen sink smell bad? Is it coming from your garbage disposal? Here's how to clean a garbage disposal and get rid of those disgusting odors.

Clean a stinky garbage disposal

Even if you run your garbage disposer until the last shred of food is gone, and you let the water run the recommended time, you can still wind up with an out-of-control science experiment that stinks up your kitchen. Face it; some food is going to stick to the inside of the grinding chamber, and it’s going to decay. You can clean the chamber by grinding ice and lemon rinds, adding baking soda or rinsing with vinegar and water. Or you can add commercial cleaners like Disposer Care, which is available at discount stores and most home centers.

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Here's the key: Clean under the splash guard

However, if you don’t clean the underside of the splash guard, you haven’t finished the job and may still wind up with a stinker. Cleaning the splash guard is easier than you think. You don’t even have to remove it. Just clean it with a toothbrush and cleaner as shown.

Sometimes the splash guard is ripped, broken or just too dirty to clean and needs to be replaced. Don’t worry, it’s not that big a deal. See How to Replace a Garbage Disposer Splash Guard to learn how easy that job is.

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Toothbrush

Required Materials for this Project

Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here's a list.

  • Anti-bacterial grease-cutting kitchen cleanser