How to Install a Garbage Disposal

Professional garbage disposal installation helps avoid any headache or troubles.

By Tolikoff Photography at Shutterstock

Your average garbage disposal is designed to last for 12 years, give or take. Now, this lifespan can vary depending on a few factors, including the quality of the unit, appropriate maintenance, and professional installation. It’s highly likely you’ll need to replace a disposal within your lifetime, whether it’s the garbage disposal in your current home or the next one. Unless you have experience with both wiring and plumbing, you may wish to hire an experienced plumber to handle garbage disposal installation. Otherwise, follow our advice below.

Tools & Materials

First, let’s break down the exact tools and materials you’ll require for garbage disposal installation. You’ll need:

  • Garbage Disposal Unit
  • Channel-Type Pliers
  • Screwdrivers
  • Plumber’s Putty
  • Mounting Ring and Drain Fitting
  • Plug-in Power Cord
  • Hammer

With these tools, you’ll find installation is a breeze.

Selecting a Disposal

A crucial step in installing a brand-new garbage disposal is first selecting the replacement. Before ever taking the old model apart, you’ll want the new unit nearby. If you choose to buy a replacement from the same manufacturer, you may be able to skip a few steps in the installation process. For example, you may not have to replace the waste assembly and mounting flange.

When choosing a new garbage disposal, opt for a high-efficiency, quiet-operation model. There are plenty on the market that are both powerful and quiet to operate. However, know that the quiet, powerful models are often quite large in size – factor this in when making your purchase.

Garbage Disposal Installation Steps

Next, if you’re confident and prepared to handle the installation yourself, adhere to the following steps closely:

  1. Shut off all electrical power to your garbage disposal.
  2. Disconnect the electrical cable from the underside of the unit.
  3. Unbolt the drainpipe.
  4. Loosen the locking ring to remove the old garbage disposal.
  5. Unscrew the mounting ring from underneath the sink.
  6. Remove the locking ring using a screwdriver.
  7. Push the sink flange from the drain hole in the sink, and remove any old putty.
  8. Apply a small bead of plumber’s putty around the sink flange; set it in the drain hole.
  9. Attach the mounting ring to the underside of the sink, and tighten all screws.
  10. Remove any excess putty from the top of the sink flange.
  11. Reconnect the electrical cable.
  12. Attach the disposal directly to the locking ring – tighten properly with a screwdriver.
  13. Connect the final tailpiece and rubber gasket to the drain line of the disposal.

While these are numerous steps to complete in order, the overall installation is relatively simple and straightforward. Of course, at any time if you feel uncomfortable, simply schedule a professional installation with an experienced plumber. It is highly recommended for your peace of mind.

If the time has come for a brand-new garbage disposal, opt for professional installation to avoid any headache or long-term issues. Whitten Plumbing is the top provider of garbage disposal installation in the area. Give us a call now at 501-607-6596.