Firsts Thing First:
One thing to get cleared away is this shocking fact: Garbage disposals don't have blades! Lots of people refer to what actually breaks food apart are called blades but in reality there are no blades! Instead there's just little teeth-like shredders that grind the food. Now that we got that out of the way, here's another fact: You can't really sharpen them. Since they're not blades, there's no way (or reason) to sharpen the shredders. All you can do is keep them clean and avoid putting the foods listed below:
- Fibrous Foods: These are your celery, artichokes, asparagus, lettuce, corn husks, carrots, onion skins and potato peels. The reason they're bad is that they can wrap around the grinder and potentially clog it.
- Grease, Fats, & Oils: While this is a more common no-no I'm still going to talk about it. The reason this is a huge no-no is for different reasons ranging from clogging the drain to creating a really nasty smell in the kitchen to diminishing the shredders effectiveness.
- Egg Shells: Some claim that these sharpen the grinders, but as I mentioned above, you can't do that. So while some people are thinking they're doing good, they're actually not. Using the disposal of egg shells grinds the shell to a more sand-like texture that can potentially clog the drain.
- Pasta, Rice, Beans: This is another no-no because you guessed it, it clogs the drain even if you put small quantities in it.
- Hot Water: Believe it or not, you shouldn't use hot water when running the disposal. You can use it AFTER you're done but NEVER during; use cold water when running the disposal.
How to Clean it:
Now that I went through what not to put in a garbage disposal, it's time to talk about how to keep it nice and clean. From what I researched, I found out that the easiest thing you can do is put some dish soap in it and let it run for like a minute with cold water. Another thing you can do is cut a lime/lemon and toss it in the disposal. This will help and even deodorize it. And another popular method is taking half a cup of baking soda and one cup of white vinegar. Pour both down which will make a fizzing noise and let it sit for a few minutes and then pour hot water in the disposal. That's it!
Keeping up with the cleanliness of your disposal and making sure you watch what you put into it will surely help your disposal last!
Till next time,