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What to do with My Leaking Garbage Disposal
1-800-Plumber + Air of Portland

  1. What are some common reasons that garbage disposals leak?

  2. Can I fix a leaking garbage disposal myself?

  3. Things That Will Damage Your Garbage Disposal

  4. Who should I call if my garbage disposal is leaking?

Garbage disposals are great appliances that have made washing dishes easy and convenient. Like all appliances, however, garbage disposals can run into problems and have issues. One of the most common problems that homeowners encounter is with a garbage disposal leaking. Before jumping to conclusions and thinking that it's broken and needs replacing, there are some things that you can do to remedy the situation. This article will take a more in-depth look at garbage disposals and what causes them to leak. We'll also tell you who to call to remedy the situation and get your disposal working as good as new.

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What are some common reasons that garbage disposals leak?

Garbage disposals are handy but sometimes finicky appliances. For this reason, it's important to pay attention to your garbage disposal and check it periodically for leaking. A leak will typically start as an occasional drip that will go unnoticed unless you're looking for it. From there, the leak will grow and expand until eventually, you have a puddle of water under your sink. Here are some of the main causes from for a leaking garbage disposal.

The Sink Flange

The sink flange is at the very top of the disposal under the sink where the disposal and the sink meet. Because of the material the flange is made of and the constant stress that it's under, there are several things that can cause it to leak.

  • Mounting bolts.

The sink flange is connected to the garbage disposal with three bolts. If these bolts aren't tight enough then there will be a tiny gap. All of your sink water and debris runs through the flange so it it isn't tight enough, a leak will definitely occur.

  • Plumbers putty.

If your disposal was installed by a plumbing professional, then there should be plumbers putty in between the flange and the drain pipe. Plumbers putty is very durable, but it's possible for cracks to develop which will cause the putty to go bad and need replacing.

Dishwasher Connection Hose

Another common culprit for garbage disposal leaks is in the hose that runs from the disposal to the dishwasher. Most modern garbage disposals will have this connection to the dishwasher in an effort to get rid of food particles during the washing cycle. The hose is fastened to the dishwasher and disposal with a set of clamps. There's always a possibility that the clamps have gone bad or that they aren't tight enough. Make sure to check these connections if you're suspicious of a garbage disposal leak.

The Discharge Pipe

The discharge pipe is located at the bottom of the garbage disposal and is the pipe that connects to the sink drain. The connection between the discharge pipe and drain is through the use of a flange and seal, and either of these components can go bad. The flange might be connected too loosely, or the seal itself can get cracked or damaged. Either way, a leak is the result.

A Crack in the Disposal Itself

Garbage disposals aren't meant to last forever and like all appliances they tend to break down after wear and tear. If a crack is the cause for your garbage disposal leaking, then you would be wise to Contact Us at 1-800-Plumber + Air of Portland. They will have the skills and tools necessary to replace your old disposal with a new one.

Can I Fix a Leaking Garbage Disposal Myself?

Depending on what the reason is behind your disposal leak, there's a chance that you can fix it yourself. If the problem is as simple as tightening a bolt on your sink flange or replacing the plumbers putty, then that's something you can probably handle. Damage to the disposal itself or to the seal or flange will require a more intense and in-depth repair.

If you don't have plumbing experience or are nervous working with electronic appliances, then you would do well not to attempt the work yourself. Rather than try to save money and make matters worse, you should seek out professional help to make sure the issue is resolved. Messing with your plumbing can quickly lead to a flooded house if you don't know what you're doing. Garbage disposals also require electricity to operate and you are at risk for electrical shock if you don't know what you're doing.

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Things That Will Damage Your Garbage Disposal

Garbage disposals have a lifespan of around 12 years on average. You can lengthen or lessen the lifespan of your disposal, however, depending on how well you take care of it. Putting certain foods and items down your disposal could damage it and cause it to give out prematurely. Here is a list of Dos and Dont's when it comes to Garbage disposals.


Do not under any circumstances put the following items down your garbage disposal.

  • Coffee grounds

  • Rice

  • Pasta

  • Bread

  • Egg shells

  • Onion or potato skins

  • Nuts or shells

  • Seeds and pits

  • Bones, grease, oil, and fat

Each of the items listed above can clog your disposal or damage the blades and result in serious problems.


  • Clean your disposal regularly.

  • Break down large items before putting them down the disposal.

  • Use cold water instead of hot water.

  • Never run the disposal unless the water is turned on.

  • Hand crank the bottom of the disposal to eliminate jams.

  • Have it inspected by a plumbing professional on a regular basis.

Who Should I Call if My Garbage Disposal is Leaking?

If your garbage disposal is leaking and you need help fast, look no further than 1-800-Plumber + Air of Portland. We have the tools and experience necessary to stop your disposals leak and have it working better than ever. No matter how well you maintain and care for your garbage disposal, leaks are inevitable in the longrun.

If you Contact Us today, we can even come out and inspect your garbage disposal and all of its components to see if it's compromised and needs replacing. Taking care of problems before they happen is always better than waiting for something to go wrong. By taking initiative and staying ahead of the issue, you can catch a leak in your garbage disposal before it has the chance to happen. Let the professionals at 1-800-Plumber + Air of Portland keep your disposal working the way it should.

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Swayze did a wonderful job yesterday, he answered all my questions perfectly, was very respectful and took the time to clean up his mess. I am really impressed and pleased with his work. read less

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Kyle provided excelleent service as he always does. I have had some tricky plumbing problems and he has always solved the problem with efficient service and winning personality. He did a beautiful job on my pipe. He takes a lot of pride in his work .

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Emanuel Reyes arrived on time and was extremely courteous and professional. Evaluated problem and took care of it in extremely short time and price was very fair. Will call again when necessary.

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1-800-PLUMBER +AIR of Portland
9735 SW Sunshine Ct., Suite 100
Beaverton, OR 97005

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97005, 97008, 97207, 97219, 97221,
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