How to reset a garbage disposal (A simple step by step guide)

How to reset a garbage disposal (A simple step by step guide)

Resettting a garbage disposal is not rocket science.

In fact, it is one of the easiest thing you can do to.

But many of my readers, including those who have been using disposal units over the years, are not quiet sure how to do that.

That’s why I finally decided to do a short post on that topic.

What is the reset button for?

When your garbage disposal is overloaded or clogged its motor won’t be able to provide enough power to run the disposal. In short your disposal gets stuck. It is possible that its motor will get damaged if you keep it ON for a long time.

Inorder to avoid this scenerio all disposal units come with a circuit breaker that breaks the electrical connection when the unit is overloaded.

A rest button restores this electrical connection so the disposal can run again.

Where is the reset button located?

The location of a reset button varies for different models. But all disposal units has one.

For all InSinkErator models including Badger and Evolution series, the reset button is located on their bottom side.

For most Waste King, Whirlaway and Moen disposal models you can find the rest button at the bottom of the front facing side (the side where their logo is).

For most disposals, the reset button is red in color and easier to find but for some brands like Moen, they are black.

How to reset a garbage disposal?

Time needed: 5 minutes.

As I said before resetting a disposal is very simple. The rest button pops out when the disposal is stuck. Then follow the below steps to reset the disposal;

  1. Switch OFF

    Switch OFF the disposal.

  2. Press the resest button

    Find the rest button and press it gently. Make sure that it stays in.

  3. Switch ON the disposal

    Once you push the reset button turn on the disposal and see if it is working.
    If the disposal is working fine, then your job is done.
    If the disposal doesn’t run and the rest button pops out again go to Step 4

  4. Find out why the disposal is stuck

    It is possible that the disposal is clogged or something fell into it that prevents the disposal from running. In this case, switch OFF the disposal again, look into it from the top and see if there are any visible obstructions. If you find any such obstructions please remove them with pliers or tongs.
    Press the rest button and switch on the disposal again.

  5. Unclog the disposal

    If you cannot find any visible obstructions in the disposal try unclogging it using an Allen wrench or any other unjamming tool.
    Once unclogged press the reset button and turn ON the disposal.

  6. Contact a professional

    If the disposal isn’t still working the matter is out of your hands. It is probably some issue with the electrical connections in the unit. In this case it is better to call for professional help than trying to rectify it by yourself.

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