When you are tossing items into your garbage disposal, you may unexpectedly also toss something down thereof to which you had no intention. Whether it's your prized wedding ring or another item, you're now facing a situation you hoped would never happen. To get your lost item back, it will be necessary to dismantle the garbage disposal. But before you jump into this job, make sure you know what you are doing by following these steps.
Turn Off the Power
As your first step, always turn off the power to the garbage disposal by doing so at your home's breaker box. For added peace of mind and safety, turn the wall switch for your disposal off and on to make sure it indeed has no power.
Remove the Drain Pipe
Next, remove the drain pipe. Usually held on with a wire or hose clamp, it can be removed with a screwdriver. After the clamp has been removed, pull the drain pipe away from the trap beneath the sink. If this offers you any significant resistance, chances are the lost item is located in this area, which may make your mission a bit easier.
Remove Inlet Hose and Attachment Ring
When it comes time to remove the garbage disposal's inlet hose and attachment ring, you may run into some problems, since this can be a delicate part of the job. If you get to this point and aren't sure you're moving in the right direction, you may want to leave the rest of the job to experienced plumbers. Though the hose is flexible and relatively easy to work with, the attachment ring holds the top of the disposal and the sink drain together, which makes it even more important this be taken apart and put back together correctly.
Locate the Metal Panel
As one of your last steps, you'll need to locate a metal panel underneath the disposal. To remove the panel, you'll need to remove two screws and then two wire nuts. This should allow you to pull the garbage disposal away from the sink bottom, enabling you to look for and safely retrieve whatever item you lost.
While dismantling your garbage disposal is a very doable DIY project when you lose an item, it's also important to make safety a top priority and know your mechanical limitations. Since your ultimate goal is to retrieve the item you lost and make sure it and the garbage disposal are undamaged, turn to an expert if there's any doubt in your mind.
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