Industry knowledge

What’s Inside a Garbage Disposal

A classic version is little more than a plastic housing containing a motor connected to a metal grinding plate with two “teeth” (called impellers) that help break down the food waste. The plate is surrounded by a perforated metal ring called the grinding ring. As the waste is ground up, water flushes the particles through holes in the grinding ring, out through the discharge opening of the housing, and into the drain pipe. The impellers help the grinding process, but they aren’t sharp and they don’t cut up food as a blender does; rather, they and the spinning plate force the food against the grinding ring, which is stationary and has a textured surface that breaks down the material.

To many of us, the garbage disposal is one of the best kitchen appliances. It not only saves you from having to scrape off every bit of food from each and every dish, but it also lets you do the dishes without worrying about small pieces of food clogging your sink drain.

Garbage disposals are pretty simple devices so you don’t have to spend a lot of time narrowing down what you want. You can quickly select the feed type, motor size, and a few other features that fit your use and your budget. You also don’t have to spend a lot to get solid performance, but it's a good idea to buy a quality product. Better disposers are more effective and last longer than cheaper models, which means you won’t have the expense and effort of replacing it as soon.