How to Pick a New Garbage Disposer

How to Pick a New Garbage Disposer

If you are considering adding a garbage disposer to your kitchen for the first time, you are about to enter a world of convenient kitchen waste elimination like you’ve never experienced before. However, you may not know enough about disposers to make the right purchase. Even if you’ve had a disposer before and are shopping for a replacement, you may not necessarily know the difference between the models you’re looking at. All disposers function similarly, but there are differences that are big enough that it is important to understand them and make the right decision before calling for installation by a plumbing service like Roto-Rooter in Bridgeport. Understanding disposer differences comes down to three major factors.

Disposer Type

There are two major disposer types: Batch feed and continuous feed. Batch feed models require the use of a stopper before the disposer is turned on. This means you won’t accidentally drop a spoon or a similar unwanted object down the disposal while it’s running. This type of disposer is also quieter while it’s being used, but is also more expensive and more difficult to install. Continuous feed models are more common, and are simply operated by a wall switch. They have a rubber shield between the drain and the disposer, which keeps food particles that are being chopped away at from jumping back up and out of the sink.


The size of a disposer doesn’t refer to its physical size, but rather the size of the motor. The bigger the motor, the more food it can handle. Small apartments or homes with only a couple inhabitants may only need a 1/3 horsepower motor to handle their small meal cleanup. However, with a large home filled with an entire family, your needs will be greater and you’ll be more comfortable with a 3/4 to one horsepower disposer. They don’t make disposer motors much bigger than that, as a one horsepower disposer can handle even the more difficult food items.


Besides the disposer type and motor size, there are a number of features that differ between models. Each model has its own anti-jamming features. Some models have a manual reset button for the motor located on the disposal, and others have a hexagonal opening that a tool can be inserted into to manually turn the blades in case of a jam. Some disposers can even run their blades in reverse in an attempt to clear up a jam. Some models also have features that make them quieter than others. With something like a disposer, it is a good idea to do your homework before making a purchase to make sure you’ve made a choice you can live with for many years to come.

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