Is It Safe to Put Lemon in a Garbage Disposal?

Here, we'll answer this question and explain how to dispose of lemon peels properly without damaging your garbage disposal.
Last updatedLast updated: July 31, 2021
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What’s the right answer? Well, lemon in a garbage disposal can have several effects on your garbage disposal and plumbing network. The reason some say no is because putting lemon rinds in the garbage disposal can make it get stuck if the right procedure isn’t followed. Meanwhile, the reason some say it’s a good idea is that it can help sanitize the kitchen of bad odors and even clean the garbage disposal, leaving it fresh.

To prevent the garbage disposal from smelling and clogging, you always have to keep it in good working order, by cleaning it periodically. Although the disposal can self-clean itself, you have to take care of the smell. And lemon can help with this. In this article, we’ll clarify whether you can put lemon peels in the garbage disposal and if yes, we’ll tell you how to do that.

Should you put lemon peels in your garbage disposal?

Having a garbage disposal underneath the kitchen sink is a great advantage since it allows you to get rid of the garbage accumulated every day without having to take it out to the container. In just a few seconds, this appliance is capable of shredding all the waste and sending it to the sewer system. But if you like taking lemon for its weight loss, anti-carcinogenic, digestive, and anti-anemic benefits, the question remains whether you can put the lemon peels in the garbage disposal.  So, can you put lemon peels in garbage disposal?

Well, according to Insinkerator, the pioneer company in kitchen sink garbage disposals, you can not just put citrus fruits in kitchen sink disposals, they can also help you clean the unit. What’s left is knowing how to do it the right way.

What to avoid?

If not properly disposed of, lemon peels can get stuck in the garbage disposal, causing a blockade. Another reason people are discouraged from disposing of lemons in the garbage disposal is because of its high acidity. The acid in the lemon can be damaging to plumbing materials, which is why we always advise you to accompany the lemon wedges with a steady stream of water, both to reduce the acid power and to prevent a clog-up.

Do lemons really clean a garbage disposal?

Well, lemons, like all citrus fruits, do not help in cleaning, they are a good option to eliminate unpleasant odors that can come from the disposer.

Is It Safe to Put Lemon in a Garbage Disposal?

They are called garbage disposals for a reason, and every so often you have to clean them and remove the bad smell. Most garbage disposals are however easy to clean. According to most reviews, the Waste Maid 10-US-WM-058-3B Garbage Disposal, is by far one of the most reliable, easy to clean and mount ones. It has a removable splash guard baffle that makes it easy to clean.

However, you may still need to eliminate odors every now and then. Citrus fruits can naturally help, due to the aromatic oils in their peels.

There are even citrus fruit-based products that are made, sold, and used to clean and freshen garbage disposals. An example is the Grab Green Naturally-Derived Disposal Cleaner and Freshener.  Derived from tangerine with lemongrass, many users consider it one of the best options for cleaning a disposal.

However, if you still want to stick with homemade items like lemon, simply cut a medium lemon or an orange into four wedges.

Turn on the faucet and then turn on the garbage disposal and insert the fruit one after the other.

If you want to get a little added aroma, squeeze some juice down the drain.

Tips on disposing lemons

Is It Safe to Put Lemon in a Garbage Disposal?

  • Make sure you cut the lemons into wedges while disposing them.
  • Don’t dispose of the lemons all at once; put it down once at a time with a steady water stream.
  • Dried peels are better than fresh ones. Dried peels destroy accumulated dirt, and natural oils leave behind a fresh scent.
  • Make use of cold water while sending wedges of lemon down the drain. Hot water may be damaging to the pipes.

Final thoughts

Food waste disposals are very low-maintenance appliances. However, if you smell odors coming from the disposer, it is usually a sign of food accumulation. Over time, food waste particles can accumulate inside the grinder chamber and sink baffle. Putting lemon in garbage disposal can help keep the unit fresh, eliminating the smell from the kitchen.

You can place ice cubes mixed with lemon wedges in the disposer to cool it down and get rid of the smell. Lemon peels and cubes of ice can help eliminate bad odors. Other citrus rinds, like those from orange, can also make the garbage disposal smell fresh and clean.

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