We all know that feeling of accidentally dropping something down the drain and hearing that awful clinking sound. But what’s worse than a regular kitchen mishap? Getting a piece of glass stuck in your garbage disposal! It’s like a horror movie waiting to happen. If you’re nodding your head in agreement, then you’ve come to the right place!
We’re going to give you some tips and tricks on how to get that pesky piece of glass out of your garbage disposal. No more worrying about shattered shards lurking in your sink. So grab your brooms, folks, because we’re about to sweep away those glassy nightmares!
Safety Precautions Before Removing Glass Out Of Garbage Disposal
When removing glass from a garbage disposal, there are several safety hazards that you should be aware of and take steps to avoid. These hazards include:
1. Cuts And Punctures: Broken glass can cause cuts and puncture wounds if mishandled. Always wear thick gloves when handling broken glass to protect your hands from injury.
2. Flying Debris: Glass can shatter and create sharp pieces that may fly in various directions. Protect your eyes by wearing safety glasses when handling broken glass.
3. Electrical Shock: Garbage disposals are powered by electricity and pose a risk of electrical shock if not handled properly. Always turn off the power to the garbage disposal before attempting to remove the glass.
4. Inhaling Dust: Small glass particles can become airborne and be inhaled. This can irritate your lungs and cause respiratory problems, as stated by Rescue 42. Wear a dust mask when handling broken glass to avoid inhaling glass particles.
5. Keep Your Distance From The Disposal: If you are too close to the disposal the broken pieces can fly up and hit you, causing cuts or other injuries to the face and neck area. Therefore, it’s important to avoid leaning over the disposal while removing the glass.
Things You’ll Need:
- Thick rubber gloves
- Tongs or Needle-nose pliers
- Hex key
- Shop vacuum or a wet-dry vacuum
- Baking soda and vinegar
Step-by-Step Guide on How To Get Glass Out Of Garbage Disposal
Removing glass from a garbage disposal can be dangerous if not done right. Follow these steps to safely remove it and prevent any harm to you or the unit:
1. Cut the power: The first thing you need to do is cut the power to the garbage disposal. You can do this by going under the sink and unplugging it. This is important for safety reasons.
2. Wear safety equipment: Put on thick rubber gloves and glasses to protect your hands and eyes respectively from any sharp edges of the glass.
3. Remove large chunks with pliers or tongs: Use needle nose pliers or tongs to remove any large chunks of glass that you can see. If you don’t have pliers, you can use tongs, but it may be a bit more challenging.
4. Use light to inspect: After removing the larger pieces use a light source, such as a flashlight, to inspect the disposal for smaller pieces of glass that may be harder to see.
5. Use a shop vacuum or a wet-dry vacuum: Once you’ve removed as much of the glass as you can with pliers or tongs, utilize a shop vacuum or a wet-dry vacuum to suck out any remaining pieces. Be sure to use a nozzle attachment that fits inside the disposal to clean out all the crevices.
6. Turn the blades with the hex key: Locate the hex key that came with the garbage disposal, or purchase one if you don’t have it. Then use it to turn the blades manually. This can help dislodge any remaining glass pieces that may be stuck. Just turn the blades slightly with the hex key.
7. Run the vacuum again: After turning the blades, run the shop vac again to remove any additional glass.
8. Broom the disposal: Now you can use a broom to sweep up any glass shards or debris that may have fallen onto the floor around the disposal.
9. Plug the disposal back in: Once you’re sure that all the glass has been removed, plug the garbage disposal back in.
10. Clean it with Baking soda and vinegar: To deodorize and sanitize the disposal, sprinkle a half cup of baking soda into the drain followed by a half cup of vinegar. Let it fizz and foam for a few minutes, then run cold water and turn on the disposal for a minute or two to flush out the mixture.
When To Call A Professional?
If you have attempted or removed the glass from a garbage disposal, it is important to know when to call a professional to avoid any potential hazards. Here are some of those scenarios:
- In case you don’t have the necessary tools.
- You have injured yourself or damaged the system during the removal process
- If awkward noises are coming from the disposal once you have gotten the glass out of it.
- The garbage disposal is not turning back ON after you have attempted to remove the glass yourself.
Tips for Preventing Glass from Entering the Garbage Disposal
Glass items should never be put in the garbage disposal as they can damage the blades, cause clogs, and potentially injure the user. Here are some tips on how to prevent the glass from entering the garbage disposal:
1. Avoid placing glass in the sink: One of the easiest ways to prevent the glass from entering the garbage disposal is to avoid placing it in the sink. Instead, put it in a separate container.
2. Inspect food waste before disposal: Before you put any food waste in the garbage disposal, make sure to inspect it carefully to ensure that there is no glass present. This is especially important if you have recently broken a glass or dish.
3. Use a sink strainer: A sink strainer can be placed over the drain to catch any glass or other debris that may be present in the sink. It can help prevent the glass from entering the garbage disposal.
4. Be mindful when washing dishes: When washing dishes, be careful not to break any glassware or dishes. If a glass breaks, remove any larger pieces and dispose of them in the regular trash. Use a damp cloth to wipe the area clean before using the garbage disposal.
Q. Will broken glass ruin garbage disposal?
Yes, broken glass can potentially ruin garbage disposal. Garbage disposals are designed to grind up soft food waste, but they are not designed to handle hard, sharp objects like broken glass. If the glass gets caught in the disposal’s blades, it can damage or break them, which can lead to costly repairs. It’s best to dispose of broken glass in a separate container, such as a paper bag, and dispose of it with your regular trash.
Q. Can I vacuum glass out of the garbage disposal?
Yes, you can vacuum glass out of the garbage disposal. However, it is recommended to first turn off the power supply to the disposal unit and carefully remove any large glass pieces with pliers or tongs before using a vacuum cleaner. Additionally, it is crucial to ensure that the vacuum cleaner has a filter or bag that can safely trap the glass shards to prevent any damage to the vacuum.
To summarize, removing glass from your garbage disposal may seem like a daunting task, but with the proper tools and techniques, it can be done safely and effectively. Remember to always exercise caution and wear protective gear, and if in doubt, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.
By following these tips, you can keep your garbage disposal in good working order and avoid any potential hazards. With a little patience and perseverance, you’ll be able to get your disposal back up and running in no time.
Gemma Alexander has an M.S. in urban horticulture and a backyard filled with native plants. After working in a genetics laboratory and at a landfill, she now writes about the environment and recycling topics.