How Do I Choose the Best Garbage Disposal Cleaner?

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  • Written By: Dee S.
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 15 August 2019
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Finding the best garbage disposal cleaner can help keep disposal units free from grime, scum, and food build-up. Garbage disposal cleaner can be found in several different forms, ranging from garbage disposal cleaner packets to pellets to liquids. The scent associated with each cleaner may vary widely as well. In addition, while some cleaners are made of harsh chemicals and bleach, others are natural, even homemade, cleaners.

One of the main kinds of garbage disposal cleaners is found in a packet. Typically, the packets are stuffed into the garbage disposal, the unit is then turned on, and a trickle of hot water is run into the disposal unit. As the packet is ground up, it creates foam that cleans the unit. These are the easiest to find and use, making them a popular choice.

For people who are not interested in purchasing the garbage disposal cleaner packets, they can purchase garbage disposal cleaner pellets, liquids, and even an aerosol can filled with cleaner. Each type is used in a similar fashion. Typically, the cleaner is placed in the drain, the unit is turned on, and a foam is produced to clean the unit.


In general, the cleaners come in a wide range of scents, such as lemon, orange, and lavender. Picking the scent is generally a matter of personal preference. Some brands only come in one scent, while other brands offer multiple scents for consumers. It is important, however, to find a garbage disposal cleaner that will not merely cover up odors, but will actually remove the odor causing grime and bacteria.

When choosing a cleaner, it is important to read all of the small print and the ingredient list. Some contain bleach, while others contain sulfur or other cleaning agents, and some claim to be biodegradable, while others do not. In addition, some state that they are safe for septic systems, while others make no such claims.

For people who are not interested in using chemical agents, there are more natural options. For example, if a person were to put equal parts baking soda and white vinegar in the garbage disposal unit, it would create a cleansing foam, similar to that created by the packets, pellets, liquids, or aerosol cans. When the foam begins to dissipate, cold water can be run through the sink and the disposal as a final rinse.

In addition, lemons, limes, oranges and grapefruits can be diced up or their peels can be removed and placed within the garbage disposal unit. The citrus works to cut down grease and grime. It will also give a natural, pleasant smelling scent. In addition, some people mix tea tree oil with lemon and vinegar to clean and deodorize units. These natural garbage disposal cleaners are guaranteed to be biodegradable, and can keep a unit clean without the use of harsh chemicals, such as bleach.


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