The Disposal

Stoppages and minor malfunctions are worth repairing. You are better off though replacing the entire unit if the motor goes out or the blades break. This is especially true if you deal with a plumbing company that warrants the product for 5-10 years or even longer.

Plumbing: Unjamming a Garbage Disposal

Jammed garbage disposals can be quite a nuisance especially when they clog up your kitchen sink. The good news is that it is often a simple task to unjam the disposal.

As you can see from the image above, a disposal will jam, or stop turning, when a foreign object such as a bone becomes caught up in the impeller blades.

You know your disposal is jammed if it makes a humming sound when the switch is turned on and it is not turning inside. If there is no sound when the switch is turned on, the unit probably became too hot and turned itself off.disposal_2

Pressing the reset button on the bottom side of the disposal will restore power to the unit and it can be turned on again to see if it is still jammed.

If it is still jammed, you will need to use a tool in an effort to unjam it.

Note: never put your hand inside a garbage disposal and *always* turn the power off at the electrical panel while performing any repair work.

You can, however use a 1/4″ or 5/16″ Allen wrench. Simply insert the wrench from below and work it back and forth until it frees up. If it doesn’t free up, the disposal is bad and will need to be replaced.


  • Sometimes, your plumbing appliances are a total mystery. How do they work? What parts are there and why are they needed? At Petersen Plumbing, we want ... [ read more ]
  • The last thing we want to see when we return from work or after a long trip, is water flowing out of your ceiling. Or worse, several inches of water ... [ read more ]
  • That slow, annoying emptying of your bathroom sink. Too much tooth paste? Long hair? This is a relatively easy fix. Clogged bathroom sinks and ... [ read more ]
  • Galvanized pipes are usually found in homes over 40 years of age. Commonly, these pipes will rust from the inside out. The pipes will corrode over ... [ read more ]
  • This is an annoyance that most homeowners have to deal with from time to time as the washers in the faucets wear out with use. You can extend the life ... [ read more ]

About Petersen Plumbing

We have serviced Greater Victoria since 1989 with 34 years of experience. Our success for complete customer satisfaction is based on quality, prompt service with maximum savings to our clients. Originating in 1989 Petersen Plumbing has been providing the Greater Victoria ... [ learn more ]

Contact Information

Have plumbing, gas,heating or marine mechanical questions? we offer same day service for customers.

Around Victoria

Welcome to Victoria, BC. Petersen Plumbing is so fortunate to be working in such a beautiful ci... [ learn more ]