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Garbage Disposal Won’t Turn On (What Do I Do? What Could the Problem Be?)

Garbage Disposal Won’t Turn On: What to Do and What The Problem Could Be

Your garbage disposal is an important feature in your home. It allows you a way to quickly clean up the kitchen without all the hassle. But you need the garbage disposal to work well for it to do any good for your needs. When the garbage disposal won’t turn on, it can be a hassle that you will need to fix.

Your garbage disposal may not turn on due to power issues, a jammed flywheel, leaky components, an old garbage disposal, or clogs in the drain. Sometimes you will need to check whether the garbage disposal is plugged in, look at the reset button, or check whether there is something wrong with the disposal itself. If none of these work, then it is time to replace the unit itself, according to a local plumber in Bethlehem, Deluxe Plumbing and Heating.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the things that can go wrong with your garbage disposal and some of the simple steps you can take to help get it fixed.

Why Won’t My Garbage Disposal Turn On?

There are different reasons why your garbage disposal is not working. Some of these include: 

Power Issues

When you push the power button and notice that it does not make any noise, even a humming sound, this is a sign that the disposal needs a little work. You can look at the plug to see if it is unplugged or check the reset button to see whether this is the main cause for concern or not. Sometimes you may need to check the circuit breaker for the whole house to get it to work.

Jammed Flywheel

Do you notice some humming noise from the unit, even when it is not coming on? If this happens to you, then it is likely that the flywheel is stuck and that is resetting the waste disposal, especially when you get it turned back on. This may even be strong enough to affect the circuit breaker and how that works.

If this is not fixed, you will burn out the motor. The reset button or the circuit breaker will often help to turn the unit off before it has a chance to overheat. You will need to take apart the unit a bit to check whether there is anything in there that you can remove to make it work better and to stop the jamming.

Leaky Components

This can be a number of issues like a leaky sink flange (which will need to be replaced to help protect things again), a leaky dishwasher connection (which needs you to retighten the connection there), or a leaky discharge drain. If tightening and doing some of the steps above does not help, then you need to get a new unit.

Faulty Disposal

Your garbage disposal can last a long time, but it is not going to last forever. After you check and fix the parts above and they are not working yet, it is time to get the garbage disposal fixed. It is likely that the garbage disposal will need some work done on it to ensure that it will continue to do its job.


It is common for clogs to show up in your garbage disposal. This can make it hard for the garbage disposal to do some of the work that you want. Take some time to look at the disposal to see if there are any clogs and work from there to get them all cleaned out. You will be surprised at how quickly the disposal will start to work.

What Should I Do When the Garbage Disposal Won’t Turn On?

There are a few steps that you can take to check the garbage disposal and get it to work again. Some of the things that you should check include:

  1. Check the plug: It is possible that the garbage disposal is unplugged and this prevents it from turning on. You just need to plug it back in and the unit will work.
  2. Check the reset button: Look at the bottom of the garbage disposal. There should be a red button. If it is popped out, this means that the circuit breaker in the unit has tripped. Just push to get the unit reset and you are ready to go.
  3. Check the power in the home: If you look at the disposal and the reset button doesn’t need to be pushed, you can check the circuit breaker on your home and reset that.
  4. Look at the disposal: If the breaker to your unit is on, there could be some electrical problems in the switch or you may need to replace the disposal. Do some research to see which type of disposal is right for you.

Taking Care of Your Garbage Disposal

It is important that you take good care of your garbage disposal. This will ensure that it will last a long time and will not stop working for you. With a bit of troubleshooting and some idea of what may cause the problem, you can get the garbage disposal to work well in no time.