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Video:Replace a Garbage Disposer

with Chris Chmura

A garbage disposer is a must for any busy cook because it makes clean-up a breeze. Watch how to replace a garbage disposer.See Transcript

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Transcript:Replace a Garbage Disposer

Hi, I'm Chris Chmura for About.com Home. My kitchen's disposer needs to be replaced, but I'm not calling a plumber. I'm going to do it myself. And so can you, so long as you're not afraid of what's under your sink.

Tools Needed to Replace a Garbage Disposer

I've chosen a popular three-quarter horsepower model, middle of the road. I'll also need:
  • a small cup of plumber's putty
  • a wrench
  • a hammer
  • two screwdrivers
  • possibly two wire nuts

Turn Off the Electricity to the Garbage Disposer

Begin by removing everything under the sink. In my case, that means lots of cleaning supplies. And, turn off the electricity to the disposer so you can safely remove the old one.

Unhook the Garbage Disposer

Under the sink, unhook the plumbing on the side of the disposer. The large pipe is the drain. You may find another one to disconnect, but only if you have a dishwasher hooked in.

At the top, where the disposer meets the sink, loosen the three screws until the bracket is no longer snug. You should now be able to rotate the whole unit off the support and place it on the floor.

Next, unscrew the electric panel door, untwist the electric nuts, and gently remove the electric wires.

Remove the Existing Mount

Next, we'll replace this part around the sink. But, if your new disposer is the same as your old one, you may be able to skip this section. Check the instructions to see if the existing mount can be re-used. I'm going to replace it.

The key here is a small ring that holds it all together. Here it is. Take a screwdriver and snap it out of place. The other pieces should then slip off. Up top, simply pull up to remove the exposed drain piece.

Install the New Garbage Disposer

Clean-up the excess plumber's putty that's underneath and move on to the new one. You'll have to separate the parts the same way you disassembled them, by tugging on the ring. Once they're separate, we're ready to dive right in.

Roll enough plumber's putty to place a 1/2- to 3/4-inch diameter snake around the flange. Then, place it in the sink, align the lettering, and push slowly.

From below, assemble the bracket and snap the ring back into place. Now, those three screws need to be tightened so the whole thing adheres to the sink.

Once that's in place, grab the new disposer and wire it the same way the old one was connected.

Attach the Dishwasher Drain Line

If you're going to use a dishwasher, you'll also need to locate the smaller drain hole on the replacement disposer and tap out the plug. It's a small plastic disc.

Now, turn the new unit upright, carefully slide it into the bracket, and twist the bottom ring to support it. Reconnect the black drain pipe to the rest of your under-sink plumbing and, if necessary, attach the dishwasher drain line and tighten with a screwdriver.

Test the New Garbage Disposer

Test your work by running some water through the disposer drain. If there are no leaks, return to the electric panel and turn on the power. Flip the switch--and success! Now, put everything back under the sink and enjoy your new appliance.

Thanks for watching. To learn more, visit us on the Web at homegarden.about.com.
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