Garbage Disposal Troubleshooting: Learn What to Do if It Won’t Turn On

November 14, 2018

Garbage Disposal Troubleshooting: Learn What to Do if It Won’t Turn On

Garbage disposals can be a great asset to a kitchen – but only if they are working correctly. Some issues must be handled by plumbing experts but some relatively simple issues may be handled by you. If you want to give it a shot and try troubleshooting one of the most common issues with garbage disposals keep reading. If you want to work with a top plumber who can fix the issue for you, contact 1st Choice Plumbing Heating & Air at 866-437-0205.

What it means if a garbage disposal won’t turn on

If you flip the switch and there is no humming sound of the garbage disposal and it does not turn on at all, then this is a sign that there is some type of electrical problem. Something is preventing the disposal from getting the current it needs. There are several things you can try to get it running again. We will start with the simplest solution and work through to the most complicated.

Check to ensure the garbage disposal is plugged in

This seems like an obvious thing but sometimes the most obvious things are the things that get overlooked: Make sure your garbage disposal is plugged in. This is actually the most common reason that a disposal is not turning on in the first place.

Press the reset button

Once you have determined that it is plugged in, find the reset button on the bottom of the garbage disposal. It is a red button and it works as a built-in circuit breaker. If it has “tripped” then you will see that it is popped outward. Just push it back in and it will reset the unit. Then try to turn the garbage disposal on again.

Check your home’s service panel

If the reset button hasn’t been tripped then it may still be an issue with a circuit being tripped – but it may be the main panel in your home. Go to your panel and see if there is a tripped breaker. If there is, reset it and see if it fixes the issue.

More complicated solutions

The above solutions can be attempted by just about anyone. The following solutions are more involved and may require advanced knowledge. If you do not feel comfortable or safe trying these on your own, contact a local plumbing company to take care of the issue for you.

At this point, it may be a wiring issue with the switch that controls the disposal or it may be that the garbage disposal is faulty. Find the switch that powers your unit. It’s most likely located on your wall but may be under the sink. Got your main service panel and turn the power off to this circuit. Then take apart the switch that controls the disposal. If you see an obviously loose connection then you may be able to simply tighten it.