When do you need to replace a waste disposal unit?
Let us begin by first addressing all of the different ways we refer to this handy little kitchen gadget. The word “insinkerator” is actually a brand name that has become a household name – and its proper spelling is InSinkErator. But we also refer to it as a waste disposal unit, waste disposer, food waste disposer, sink disposal unit, or a food disposal unit (although, we also tend to call our teenagers that).
By the way, our North American friends have interesting names for the waste disposer. Americans that we know call theirs a garbage disposer – because to them rubbish is garbage. And Canadian friends go even further and call it a “garburator” – but we have yet to hear any Kiwis call it that.
If you’re wondering how long your waste disposer should last, you may also be wondering if there are things you should and shouldn’t be putting in it to affect how long it lasts. We address that in another blog that you can read here, called “What can you put in a food waste disposal unit?”
First off, what is a waste disposal unit and how does it work?
A food waste disposer is a unit attached to the plumbing under your kitchen sink. Depending on the model you choose, it is usually approximately 35 cms tall by about 50 cms wide, including attachments. For the benefits it provides, a good unit doesn’t take up much space and will fit under most sinks. We often have households install one in the kitchen and one in the scullery because they’re so helpful.
A waste disposer works by grinding up the food waste you put down your sink. It is comprised of a grinding ring and grinding teeth, no blades like many people think.
As InSinkErator themselves explain, “InSinkErator food waste disposer units use no blades whatsoever. Instead, impellers mounted on a spinning plate use centrifugal power to force food waste particles against a grind ring. That ring breaks down the food waste into very fine particles – virtually liquefying them. Running water from the tap then flushes the particles through the grind ring out of the disposer and into your wastewater pipe. From there it flows to the wastewater treatment plant or your septic system.”
How long should a waste disposal unit last?
As a general rule of thumb, you can look at the warranties for different InSinkErator models to get an idea of how long they should last. The following are the advertised warranties for the current InSinkErator models:
Emerson E20 – 2 years
Model 46 – 2 years
Model 56 – 3 years
Model 66 – 4 years
Evo 100 – 5 years
Evo 200 – 10 years
A waste disposer will last longer if you do three things:
- Use it properly – refer to our other post here about what you should and shouldn’t put down an InSinkErator
- Clean it regularly – every once in a while, run a bit of soapy water down; or you can also make vinegar ice cubes and crush a few down
- Maintain and repair it when needed – pay attention to any unusual sounds or leaks, and give us a call if you suspect it’s not working properly
InSinkErators are such an added benefit and make life in the kitchen so much easier, so it’s hard to put a value on them. Like any household appliance, they need looking after and will last longer if you use them property and maintain them regularly. Have a look at our other blog about What can you put in a food waste disposal unit? for some tips on how to get your waste disposal unit lasting as long as possible.
Which waste disposal unit is best?
At Regency Plumbing we stand by the InSinkErator brand and install any and all of their models. Their current range includes the E20 Emerson (very popular with housing companies for new builds), the Model 46, Model 56, Model 66, Evolution 100 and Evolution 200.
Have a look at our waste disposal specials page here for great pricing on waste disposal units and installation.