Garbage disposals use a grinding mechanism to pulverize food pieces into particles small enough for disposal. Instead of using blades, the grinding mechanism consists of impellers mounted onto a spinning plate. With the help of a motor, the rotation or turning of these impellers produces enough centrifugal force to crush food particles against a grind ring.

This produces the garbage disposal’s distinctive humming sound. When the grinding mechanism somehow malfunctions, you may hear humming without the corresponding turning or spinning. In other words, the garbage disposal stops working. Here is a look at the possible reasons a garbage disposal stops working.

Clogged Disposal

An obstruction or clog is one of the top reasons that your garbage disposal may hum without turning. Dropping the wrong items into a garbage disposal can impede the performance of the unit’s impellers or spinning plate. Items like cutlery, large seeds, coffee grinds, hot grease, clam shells, popsicle sticks, or toys can all obstruct this appliance.

If someone flips on the power switch, electricity will still run the motor even though the garbage disposal’s impellers and spinning plate cannot move. It is important to contact a plumber to diagnose and fix the clog so that the motor does not burn out and cause further problems.

Tripped Breaker or GFCI Switch

A tripped circuit breaker or GFCI outlet can also produce humming without the corresponding impeller rotation. Tripped breakers can result from an electrical issue, such as a short-circuited connection. Short circuits often result from excess voltage and can suddenly cause an abundance of electrical current to flow into the motor. Since short circuits are often serious, it is usually better to stay on the safe side and contact a professional if you have an electrical issue.

Similarly, GFCI is an acronym for a device known as the “ground fault circuit interrupter.” Designed as a shock protector, the GFCI may also help monitor areas where electrical circuits may accidentally come into contact with water. Working with a GFCI requires expertise, so it is important to contact a professional if you suspect circuit or outlet problems.

Faulty Motor

A faulty motor is another main reason that your garbage disposal can stop working. The average life expectancy of a garbage disposal is 10 to 15 years. Older motors are prone to overheating and can produce a humming sound without turning or rotating. Although you can ask a plumber to repair a defective motor, replacing the garbage disposal with a newer model often makes more sense.

Contact Us Today

Garbage disposals provide a clean and safe way to handle food waste. While dealing with a broken disposal is a hassle at first, the best plumbers can fix the problem in no time. Half Moon Plumbing offers garbage disposal services for Owasso, OK. We offer both garbage disposal repair and new garbage disposal installation. Contact Half Moon Plumbing to ensure your garbage disposal performs at its best.

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