If you want to buy a new garbage disposal unit or replace the one you already have at home, you’ll find that you have several options to choose from. To help you with your selection process, we’ll discuss some of the things you need to keep in mind when shopping for a food waste disposer. We’ll also show you the top three models based on garbage disposal reviews written by actual consumers themselves.
How a Garbage Disposal System Works
Most of us already know that operating a food disposal system is as simple as putting food waste down the drain, pressing a switch, and watching the waste disappear.
What you don’t see is what goes on inside the cylinder under your sink where the food goes to after it descends the drain. Inside the cylinder, blades or grinders grind and shred the waste into tiny pieces, and flushes them away into the septic tank or sewer system.
Batch Feed vs. Continuous Feed Kitchen Waste Disposal Units
There are two basic modes in which garbage disposal units operate: the batch feed and continuous feed modes. To operate a batch feed model, you place the disposal lid on it, which then activates the unit. The continuous feed model, on the other hand, is turned on and off with a flick of a switch.
Continuous feed garbage disposal systems are more commonly used than batch feed systems. They are also the ones that are recommended for use in home kitchens.
Some Pros and Cons of Garbage Disposals
One obvious benefit is the immediate convenience of disposing of food waste. It can get rid of your leftover food right after a meal; you don’t have to set it out with your other trash. Many people also feel that using a garbage disposal is easier than composting when it comes to eliminating biodegradable waste.
When it comes to disadvantages, one of the things that people complain about is the amount of noise that a garbage disposal unit can make, However, since the device is usually only operated for a few seconds, users are willing to put up with it, considering the convenience that its use affords them.
Another more serious drawback has to do with the impact of the amount of kitchen waste that food disposal systems discharge through plumbing and sewerage systems. As mentioned above, they can impose an extra burden on the water supply or sewage system of a city or town. This is why it’s necessary to check if local laws allow you replace or install a garbage disposal unit in the area where you live.
Things to Consider
If you are a first-time garbage disposal system user, you should first determine if such appliances are allowed where you live. Some countries in Europe and a number of U.S. cities discourage or have an outright ban on garbage disposals because of water supply concerns or the extra burden they place on the municipal waste treatment system.
Compare motors of several brands and determine which one best suits your needs. Motors in typical waste disposal units range from ¼ to 1 horsepower, and if you have moderate waste disposal needs, a unit with a smaller engine should be sufficient. But if your household regularly has a large amount of food scraps to get rid of, or if you plan to grind bones and other hard food waste, then it would be advisable for you to consider a one-horsepower unit.
It’s also noteworthy to keep in mind that the larger and more powerful garbage disposal units generally operate more silently than the smaller ones since they use quieter motors and insulation that dampens sound. Some of these higher-end models also have an auto reversing function that helps prevent blockages and jamming.
However, if you’re planning on getting a more powerful model, make sure that your sink is able to support it. Thin stainless steel sinks will tend to vibrate forcefully if you use a high-powered garbage disposal system.
Top 3 Best selling
Are you curious to find out which food disposal systems are the best in the market according to what other consumers think? We’ve done the research for you, and present here three of the top-rated models according to consumers’ garbage disposal reviews on Amazon.com.
1. Waste King L-8000 Legend Series 1.0-Horsepower Continuous Feed Operation Waste Disposer
This Waste King food waste disposer has more than 400 5-star reviews on Amazon.com, making it one of the top bestselling appliances in its category. It was also rated as the best disposal unit in the August 2009 issue of “Consumer Reports.” Its 1-horsepower, 2800 RPM permanent magnet motor makes it easier to grind even the hard stuff. The grinding chamber will not corrode since it’s made of glass-filled nylon. Plus, insulation on the stainless steel grinding parts makes for a quiet operation.
– Reviewers like that it’s so easy to install; one even said he only needed two tools to install it
– The small bin minimizes the risk of accidents
– It’s surprisingly quiet for its size
– It accepts bones, pits and coffee grounds
– The rubber splash guard is easy to remove and clean
– Homeowners who don’t have an outlet under their sink may need to remove the plug from the unit to hardwire it
– Some reviewers say the size is cumbersome, and that it barely fit under the sink
– The sink ring has a cheap appearance
2. Waste King L-2600 Legend Series 1/2 HP Continuous Feed Operation Waste Disposer
Consumers have given another Waste King appliance many high ratings and five-star reviews. It’s smaller than the one shown above, with its ½ horsepower engine, but has pretty much the same features. It is safe for properly-sized septic tanks, includes all the hardware for easy installation, and comes with 5-year mechanical warranty and a lifetime warranty against corrosion.
– One reviewer said this Waste King model had no problem pulverizing nut shells, carrots, and other food scraps that his old waste disposer could not handle
– It comes with a built-in power cord, so there’s no need to wire up anything
– The rubber guard is removable for cleaning
– It runs fast and grinds quickly
– The installation instructions are simple and well-illustrated
– It runs relatively quietly
– Reviewers praise Waste King’s customer service
– It doesn’t include a wrench that can be used if the unit becomes jammed up
– The metal sink ring can become dented
– One reviewer complained about standing water in her sink
3. InSinkErator Evolution Compact 3/4 HP Household Food Waste Disposer
This InSinkErator Compact food waste disposer has quite a number of positive reviews on Amazon.com. Reviewers like that it’s easy to install and hook up, and works quietly. At 13x9x13 inches, it’s compact enough to fit in most cabinet spaces, yet powerful enough to quickly and efficiently grind leftovers with its ¾ horsepower motor. It also features MultiGrind technology, which makes it deal with hard items such as rib bones, easily. Here are some of the other things that the reviews have to say about it:
– It doesn’t vibrate while operating
– One customer said that nothing he has fed it failed to be ground up and flushed away
– The appearance projects the image of a high-quality and high-end appliance
– The installation instructions are easy to follow
– Many say that it is so quiet, they thought they had forgotten to turn on the power or that it wasn’t running at all
– Several customers approve of the fact that it’s made in the USA
– It’s pricier than some other models, but many reviewers say it’s worth the price
– Some complained about clogging problems, but at least one customer said it was his fault because he fed waste food into it too fast
– Some reviewers say it’s difficult to get the unit to match up and lock on the flanges during installation
The hundreds of five-star reviews that these products have make them worth checking out even further. You just might find one of them to be the best garbage disposal system for your home.