Why Does My Garbage Disposal Smell? [Causes Of Smells]

Why does my garbage disposal smell?

The factors that primarily cause your garbage disposal smell include the decomposition of Food left in the garbage disposal, leakage of sewer gases as well as production of algae, mold, and bacteria. However, you need not worry about it as this article will help you understand the causes of the production of smell in your garbage disposal and the possible solutions to this problem.

No one can deny the efficient working of garbage disposal and its role in making the kitchen environment clean by boosting the food waste drainage after crushing it well. However, at the same time the food particles stuck in drainage pipes and with crushing blades may produce an unpleasant smell.

So, you may observe that your Garbage disposal smells like a dead animal. But there is nothing to be concerned about it as we have come up with some efficient ways of curing this problem. However, before elaborating on these methods in detail, it would be better for us to discuss the causes behind the garbage disposal smell problem first.


What Causes The Smell In Garbage Disposal?

We can be able to overcome the smell problem in garbage disposal only when we know the causes behind it. Here are the major factors that cause smell in the garbage disposal.

Why Does My Garbage Disposal Smell?

Accumulation And Decomposition Of Food:

The factor that contributes the most to smell production in a garbage disposal is the accumulation of food waste particles around the blades of garbage disposal, inside the drainage pipes, and other associated parts.

Read: Best Garbage Disposals Reviews

Food waste particles present in the above-mentioned areas of the drainage system collectively take part in producing foul smells in the whole environment of your kitchen.

Ineffective Drain Trap:

Another worth considering factor that may result in the smell problem in garbage disposals is the ineffectiveness of the drain trap. The most basic function of the trap is to control or prevent the sewer gases from leakage. In addition to it, holding water is also one of the functions of the drain trap.

So, any problem with the drain trap reduces its efficiency to perform its functions. It results in the leakage of sewer gases. And these sewer gases are responsible for foul smell production.

Growth Of Microorganisms:

Last but not least factor that is held responsible for the unpleasant smell in your kitchen sink is the growth and development of microbes in your garbage disposal.

Mainly the growth of such organisms happens due to the availability of an accordant environment. A wet and hot environment in a garbage disposal is suitable for the growth of microorganisms like bacteria, algae, and fungi.

And it is the growth of aforesaid microorganisms that causes the foul smell in the garbage disposal.

How To Overcome The Garbage Disposal Smell?

Here are some of the best methods and techniques that will certainly help you overcome the smell problem in your garbage disposal.

Overcome The Garbage Disposal Smell

Regular Rinsing With Water:

We are all well aware of the fact that prevention is better than cure. Similar is the case of water rinsing through the garbage disposal. If you rinse your garbage disposal with water on a regular basis or after regular intervals, the chances of the expulsion of smell are reduced to a huge extent.

However, it should be noted that using hot water will do the task more efficiently. And rising of water is needed when the garbage disposal is working or it is on.

Using A Mixture Of Salt And Ice:

A proportionate mixture of salt and ice works well and helps you remarkably in reducing and even eliminating the foul smell from your kitchen.

This mixture cleans well the internal parts of your garbage disposal and removes all the stuff causing the smell problem. It is noteworthy that the mixture of ice and salt not only cleans garbage disposal effectively but also sharpens its blades, thus enhancing the efficiency of your waste disposer unit.

Go For Natural Cleaner:

You can go for a natural cleaner in case both the above-mentioned methods are not working. Natural cleaner helps in eliminating the ill smell from garbage disposal by cleaning all the waste more effectively and quickly.

Natural cleaner means the mixture of baking soda and vinegar in a definite proportion as told earlier as well. Generally, the amount of vinegar in these types of mixtures is kept four times the amount of baking soda.

First, you need to rinse garbage disposal with water after that pour the natural cleaner and then you have to leave it for a few minutes. Now rinse it again with water and your garage disposal gets clean and smell-free.

Usage Of Citrus Fruit:

It is a matter of common observation that many people are seen using citrus fruits for the purpose of cleaning their kitchen sinks.

You will be glad to know that citrus fruits contain natural oils that not only make your garbage disposal parts crystal clear, but also remove ill smells and add fragrance to it.

Not Putting Prohibited Things in Disposer Unit:

If you avoid putting unsafe things in the garbage disposal, then it may also help you clean unwanted or accumulated stuff and eliminate the unpleasant odor from it.

The things that are not supposed to be put in the garbage disposal include:

  • Coffee grounds
  • Vegetable and fruit peels
  • Meat
  • Bones
  • Eggshells
  • Fats and oils
  • Metallic objects

Best Garbage Disposal Buying Guide


When it comes to the tackling of smell problems in food waste disposer units, the nature, and type of garbage disposal cleaner matters a lot as explained in this article. There are different ways a person may adopt in order to overcome the problem mentioned above.

Using a suitable cleaner is the most effective and practical one of these methods. As the above discussion tells, natural cleaner (mixture of baking soda and vinegar) is the Best garbage disposal cleaner and deodorizer. So, it would be better to go for it.

Information given in this article enables you to determine the causes behind the smell problem and adopt the best technique to tackle it out of the methods given above.

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