Why Is My Garbage Disposal Leaking?

A garbage disposal is a kitchen appliance that is installed under the sink and is used to shred food waste into tiny pieces, allowing it to easily pass through the plumbing system. It helps to reduce the amount of organic waste that goes into landfills and prevents odors in the kitchen. Just like with any appliance, sometimes it has problems. Find yourself asking, why is my garbage disposal leaking? It could be leaking for several reasons so finding out why is important.

Garbage disposals are useful for disposing of food waste.

Why Are Garbage Disposals Useful?

Garbage disposals are useful for several reasons. Firstly, they eliminate the need for a separate compost bin, making it more convenient to dispose of food waste. Secondly, they help to reduce the amount of waste transported to landfills, contributing to environmental sustainability. Lastly, garbage disposals prevent the buildup of foul odors and bacterial growth in the kitchen.

Reasons Why a Garbage Disposal May Leak

There are several reasons why a garbage disposal may leak. Some common causes include loose connections, worn-out gaskets, cracks in the unit’s body, or damage to the plumbing pipes connected to it. Leaks can also occur if the garbage disposal is not properly installed or if there is an excessive amount of food waste being processed.

Where is the Leak Coming From?

To determine where the leak is coming from, you need to inspect the garbage disposal carefully. Leaks can happen at various points, such as the sink flange, dishwasher connection, discharge pipe, or the bottom of the unit itself.

If you have a leak in the garbage disposal, it is important to get it fixed.

How to Fix the Leak?

The specific steps to fix a garbage disposal leak depend on the source of the leak. However, some general troubleshooting measures include tightening loose connections, replacing worn-out gaskets, or sealing cracks with epoxy or plumber’s putty. If the leak persists or is beyond your expertise, it is best to seek professional help.

How to Prevent Future Leaks?

To prevent future leaks, it is important to maintain your garbage disposal properly. Avoid putting hard or fibrous materials down the drain, as they can damage the unit and cause leaks. Regularly clean the garbage disposal by grinding ice cubes or citrus peels to remove any buildup. Additionally, be mindful of not overloading the disposal with excessive amounts of food waste at once.

Other Recommended Maintenance

Now that you know about a leaking garbage disposal, let’s look at a few other areas of recommended maintenance.

One of those is how to fix the garbage disposal when it is humming. This can be caused by a clog in the motor, GFCI may have tripped, or faulty motor. Additionally, there are step-by-step directions to fix it.

Another is the longevity of garbage disposals. The good news is that they last from 10-15 years with proper maintenance. That is good news knowing that hopefully keeping it maintained will keep it running.

Lastly, you may need to adjust the water pressure regulator. This is important as it reduces the home’s water pressure buildup.

When Do I Call a Professional?

While some minor leaks can be fixed with DIY methods, there are situations where it is best to call a professional. If the leak persists even after attempted repairs or if you are unsure about how to proceed, it is recommended to seek the assistance of a licensed plumber or a garbage disposal repair specialist.


Garbage disposals are valuable kitchen appliances that help to reduce waste, prevent odors, and make kitchen cleanup more convenient. However, leaks can occur due to various reasons, which require timely inspection and repair. By following proper maintenance practices and addressing leaks promptly, you can ensure the smooth functioning of your garbage disposal for years to come. Call House Inspection Associates to conduct a check on the garbage disposal during a full home inspection in the Virginia, D.C., and Maryland areas.

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