Why Pumpkins And Garbage Disposals Don’t Mix

pumpkin carving and garbage disposalsAs Halloween approaches, we see more and more jack-o-lanterns since it is a tradition that is closely associated with this holiday. However, anyone who has ever carved one knows that it can be a slightly messy task especially when you are removing the insides in order to prep it for carving. Some might try to find ways to deal with this mess by dumping the insides of the pumpkin down their garbage disposal. Although this might seem like a great way to clean up, it can be a bad idea. In the following article titled, “Pumpkin Pulp Will Scare Your Disposal to Death“, by Houselogic, they discuss what this does to your garbage disposal and your pipes:

Pumpkin Pulp Will Scare Your Disposal to Death

The pulp, seeds, and other guts you’re scraping out of pumpkins this week can kill your garbage disposal, so toss them in the trash or the compost pile instead.

garbage disposals and pumpkin carvingPumpkins and garbage disposals are not a good mix. Not only are pumpkins are bad idea to shove down your garbage disposal but, in general, as a rule of thumb, putting any stringy vegetables down your garbage disposal seems to be a bad idea. In the following article by the Huffington Post, they discuss some pointers you can follow the next time you are thinking about putting something down your garbage disposal:

Things You Should Never Put Down Your Garbage Disposal

Many vegetables are too stringy or fibrous to go down the disposal, getting caught in the motor and leading to a clogged drain — you may be surprised which basic, everyday veggies you’re not supposed to be throwing in the disposal. Also, certain starchy leftover foods should never go down the disposal because they can swell and clog the drain. We’ve got a few other food items you should think twice about, too. To read the full Huffington Post article, click here.

It appears that you can’t just put anything into your garbage disposal without thinking about it first. For those of you who have put pumpkin guts down your drain and are currently experiencing the repercussions, the following article by For Dummies, discuss what you can do if you have clogged your garbage disposal:

How To Unclog A Garbage Disposal

Never use chemical drain cleaners in a disposal. The chemicals are highly corrosive and may damage rubber or plastic parts.

Use Mother Nature’s deodorizer for your disposal: Every few months, cut a lemon in half, throw one half in the disposal, turn on the unit, and let it run for a minute or two. The lemon removes the build-up of residue on the interior of the disposal and deodorizes the unit. You know it’s working by the fresh lemony smell.

If the instructions in your user’s manual are no help, follow these steps to unclog a disposal:

1. Shut off the electrical power switch.

This switch is located under the cabinet, near the disposal, or on a wall nearby. If you don’t find a switch, go to the main power panel and turn off the breaker or remove the fuse that powers the disposal.

Never put your hand in the disposal. Remember that the switch may be defective, so keep your hands out of the disposal even when power to the machine is turned off.

This section was originally found on the “For Dummies” website which can be viewed here.

As we read above, garbage disposals can be finicky and what you feed into it should be something that you know if safe to put into it. Pumpkin guts do not seem conducive to garbage disposals because the pumpkin’s insides will clog it and you will be dealing with a bigger mess than just simply throwing away your pumpkin guts in the trash.

If you have already shoved the remnants of your pumpkin into your garbage disposal and now you have a clogged sink, allow us to help you. For a professional plumber in your area, Robinson Plumbing can assist you with any plumbing questions that you might have as well as address any of your plumbing needs. Robinson Plumbing is a local, family owned company that is known for trusted, quality service. Call us today at (610) 351-9889 or contact us for any questions that you might have!