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Why Is My Garbage Disposal Leaking?

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Plumbing > Why Is My Garbage Disposal Leaking?
Why Is My Garbage Disposal Leaking?

One of the devices used to keep a modern kitchen clean and free of odor is the garbage disposal. We all use it to dispose of vegetable peels, discarded pieces of meat, and other organic material that can lead to a rotten smell if placed in the garbage bag. When this very useful appliance attached to your kitchen sink starts leaking it can cause a number of problems. All of the smells and unwanted debris from your cooking efforts are now inside your kitchen, within the cabinet that houses the drain from the kitchen sink. As such, fixing a leaking garbage disposal is definitely a top priority and should be handled by a qualified plumber.

  1. 1.Health Concerns

    A kitchen sink is used often, even during the preparation of a simple meal or snack. Keeping your sink clean can be extremely difficult, but with the help of your garbage disposal it makes the job easier. Whether you are baking a cake or making an omelet, the sink and the garbage disposal are put to use grinding and disposing eggshells, coffee grounds, and much more. When this system begins to leak, your kitchen becomes a breeding ground for germs and bacteria that can potentially harm inhabitants of the home. You also do not want to attract ants, cockroaches, and other pests.


    A leaking garbage disposal can be unpleasant to deal with since you have to mop up the slush and water that should have been drained out of the kitchen sink in the first place. Moreover, it is unhygienic and you need to disinfect the cabinets that have been contaminated by the leaking water. The first step to dealing with a leaking garbage disposal is to stop using the kitchen sink altogether and switch off the electrical power to the unit to avoid any hazardous situations.

  2. 2.Ruptured Pipe

    Once you have ascertained that the power supply to the leaking garbage disposal has been switched off, you are ready to check for the cause of the leak. The first part to be checked should be the pipe connecting the sink to the garbage disposal, as this can be done without dismantling the unit. The PVC pipe may be cracked or broken which can cause the disposal to leak. In such cases, the PVC pipe should be replaced without dismantling the garbage disposal. If you are not comfortable with this type of repair, contact a certified plumber to assist in the repairs.

  3. 3.Loose Sink Flange

    The garbage disposal is attached to the sink by means of a flange that is screwed on to the bottom of the sink. The vibration of the garbage disposal can loosen the screws and cause it to leak. If the leak appears to be from near the top of the garbage disposal, you should tighten these screws and run water in your sink. If the leak continues, you’ll need to call in a professional to assess the damage or check to see if the problem lies elsewhere.

  4. 4.Putty Problems

    If the leak comes from the top of the garbage disposal unit even after you have tightened the screws in the flange, it could be because of putty problems. The putty used to seal the flange might have eroded or weakened, but this can be fixed by resealing the flange with more plumbers’ putty. Wait for the putty to dry before testing for the leak.

  5. 5.Damaged Gasket

    There is a gasket between the sink and the blades of the garbage disposal unit. The leak may have occurred if the gasket is cracked or frayed. To check for this, simply dismantle the garbage disposal and check the quality of the gasket. If it is dried, frayed, or otherwise damaged, all you need to do is replace the gasket with a new one and reattach the garbage disposal unit.

  6. 6.Dishwasher Connection

    Sometimes the problem can be with the dishwasher connection. The clamp that connects the dishwasher hose to the garbage disposal unit can be loose. In this case, you need to tighten it. If the dishwasher hose itself is damaged, this needs to be replaced to stop the leak.

  7. 7.Discharge Drainpipe

    The discharge drainpipe from the garbage disposal to the sewer can also be the cause of the leak. This pipe can be cracked or broken and should be replaced to stop further water outflow. Additionally, you need to check the bolts holding the discharge pipe and the garbage disposal together and ensure that they are tight. This too can prevent the garbage disposal from leaking.

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