5 Unexpected Reasons Your Garbage Disposal May be Leaking & How to Stop It
Garbage disposals are an invaluable tool in many kitchens, facilitating efficient and safe disposal of food waste. For all their usefulness, however, garbage disposals can cause major problems if and when they start to leak. Knowing what the most common causes of these leaks are and how to fix them is essential to keeping your garbage disposal in tip-top shape.
The five most common causes of garbage disposal leaks are: loose mounting bolts, failed plumber’s putty, loose or worn out hose clamps, faulty flange and sealing ring, and a cracked inner shell. Let’s take a closer look at each of these causes in turn.
The uppermost portion of the garbage disposal consists of a sink flange that connects the disposal to the sink drain. If the mounting bolts that secure it in place are not tightened correctly, or have become loose over time, this could lead to leaks. To remedy this, the three mounting bolts should be tightened securely and the putty that helps seal the connection replaced.
The connection between a garbage disposal and the dishwasher drainage hose is also a possible cause of leaks. In this situation, the clamps that attach the hose to the disposal might not be secure enough. Ensuring the clamps are tight and, if necessary, replacing any damaged parts of the hose, is the solution here.
The bottom of the garbage disposal includes a discharge pipe that is connected via a flange and a seal to the drain of the sink. Over time, a combination of wear and tear and improper use can cause these parts to fail and lead to leaks. To fix the problem, the flange should be tightened with a plumber’s wrench and, if the old seal has been damaged, it should be replaced with a new one.
An even bigger problem with your garbage disposal can occur if the inner shell starts to crack. While this is less common, it can still happen and is usually caused by overuse or improper installation. If the shell has indeed cracked, the entire garbage disposal will need to be replaced.
Finally, garbage disposal pipes that have been jostled out of position can also create leaks. This is especially likely if you store items underneath the sink. To fix this, simply check the pipes, put them back in their proper place, and make sure the retaining bolts are tightened. If this does not solve the issue, it is necessary to replace the putty or sealing ring.
In conclusion, garbage disposal leaks can be caused by a variety of different problems. From loose mounting bolts and faulty seals to cracked shells, there is no one surefire fix for what can be an annoying issue. Fortunately, understanding the five most common causes of garbage disposal leaks outlined above can provide a valuable starting point for troubleshooting the issue.