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Bayonet Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning Blog

Your Garbage Disposal Isn’t a Garbage Can!

Perhaps garbage disposals should have a different name—perhaps, we should be calling them “specific item disposals” instead, since there are a number of things that should not be thrown down them!

Although it’s super convenient and easy to use, your garbage disposal was not designed to chew up all your uneaten scraps. So, this week, we thought we’d provide you with a guide about what can and cannot go down your garbage disposal. That way, we can hopefully prevent some major plumbing issues!

All you’ve got to do is keep reading below to find out more. (And of course, remember to schedule your plumbing services in Pasco County, FL with our team!)


Here are some items you should definitely not put down your garbage disposal:

  1. FOGs: FOG, or liquid fats, oils, and grease, should never be put down a garbage disposal. Though these liquids might seem safe when they’re hot, all three turn into a waxy sludge when they cool. This can easily clog your drain and allow other food particles to get caught in it. It is better to just let these liquids cool and throw them in the trash can.
  2. Unchewable food items: As a rule of thumb, if you can’t chew it, neither can your garbage disposal. Materials such as popcorn kernels, bones, and other solid food products should go in the trash can.
  3. Rice and pasta: Rice and pasta are quite soft, so your garbage disposal should be able to grind them up without a problem, right? However, both rice and pasta will continue to absorb water, causing them to swell up and cause quite a problem if they get caught inside the disposal.
  4. Coffee grounds: Sure, coffee grounds may seem harmless, as they are quite small. However, these tiny particles can gather and settle in your pipes, sort of like sediment. Plus, they are easily trapped by substances like fat and grease.
  5. Actual garbage: Paper or plastic materials should never be thrown down the garbage disposal. These materials can cause significant damage to the grinder blades and cause serious blockages.
  6. Hands: This may or may not seem obvious but in no circumstance should your hands enter the garbage disposal. Do not attempt to fix a jam with your hands, as it can be very dangerous. Instead, call a professional.


There are a number of items that can be thrown down the garbage disposal. These include:

  • Cold water
  • Non-fibrous vegetable scraps
  • Citrus peels
  • Non-fibrous fruit scraps
  • Soft foods, i.e. yogurt and applesauce.

Ask a Professional

If you are still unsure about what can and can’t go down your garbage disposal, do not hesitate to ask your local plumber—knowing the difference can dramatically improve the overall performance of your plumbing system!

And, in the event that your garbage disposal does need repair, you want to make absolutely certain that you’ve hired a certified plumber for the job! Trust us, when it comes to your plumbing, you don’t want to take any risks.

To learn more about our plumbing services, contact the team at Bayonet Plumbing, Cooling, and Heating today. 

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