Can You Use Your Dishwasher With A Broken Garbage Disposal?

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Can You Use Your Dishwasher With A Broken Garbage Disposal?

Come on now, admit it. Oh, go ahead, it’s just between the two of us. You used and ABUSED your garbage disposal and dishwasher during the holidays, didn’t you? Grease and turkey bones in the disposal and lots of dirty plates with food still on them in the dishwasher. It doesn’t make you a bad homeowner; it just happens during the hectic family gatherings and huge holiday feasts.

Joined at the Hip

You may not realize it, but this is the situation for your dishwasher and garbage disposal. A dishwasher does not have a separate drain as part of your home’s plumbing system. Instead, it drains through the disposal. That includes any food debris washed off the plates and bowls during the cleaning cycle. When the disposal is draining slowly or is clogged, those problems can affect the dishwasher.

Is it Safe to Use?

Kotz Heating, Cooling & Plumbing wants to make sure we don’t confuse you about what’s going on in your Waterford, MI home. If, for example, your disposal is broken, as in an electrical or mechanical problem, you can still run the dishwasher. It’s the garbage disposal drain system that can keep the dishwasher from draining properly.

Things You Can Do

If you are experiencing drain problems connected to your garbage disposal, there are some things you can do before calling in the pros from Kotz. Unless absolutely necessary we do not recommend using harsh drain cleaning chemicals. Instead try using household products like vinegar, citrus, or baking soda to clean the drains. Here are several tips to help prevent drain and dishwasher problems before they happen:

  • Always scrape food off your dishes before adding them to the dishwasher.
  • Make sure to run cold water while using the garbage disposal. This helps prevent blockages and keeps the disposal motor cool.
  • Hard foods including uncooked rice and bones of any sort don’t go in the disposal.
  • Overfilling the disposal is a good way to cause clogs or even burn out the motor.
  • Avoid putting grease or vegetable and fruit peels in the disposal.

Know When to Ask For Help

If the holidays have left your dishwasher and garbage disposal on life support and nothing you tried has worked, then now is the time to call Kotz and schedule an appointment. You should also consider scheduling annual plumbing maintenance as a preventive measure. Be sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more great information like this.