Garbage disposal-how it works

niki3sonsSeptember 6, 2012

To turn on my current GD you push and turn the strainer in the sink. Do they not work that way anymore? I see a lot of postings about air buttons and light switches to turn them on. Can someone please explain :-)

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You have a batch-mode disposal. Others are activated by an external switch (non-batch).

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 5:36PM
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Yep... batch feed. I have a batch feed now and used to have a continuous feed. I much much much prefer my batch feed.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 5:38PM
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I haven't bought a new one yet. Any recommendations?

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 5:51PM
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I have 3 young kids and another on the way, so I'm thinking batch feed might be better. Can I buy the stopper in oil rubbed bronze?

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 6:33PM
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What am I missing?
PUSH the drain thingy?
Not a hard-wired switch?

Do I want that?

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 8:23PM
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These work by a magnetic connection in your sink stopper. Turn it one way to engage, another to just drain, and flip it over for the stopper effect.

We had a batch feed in our retrofitted 1938 kitchen. When that one died I was worried that I couldn't find another. One of the great things about these is that you don't need a switch - so no need to break into existing tile or back splash. I was pleased to see that there are many batch choices now - good for safety and ease of operation. But I don't know about ORB.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 8:36PM
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We are doing a continuous feed with air switch in our new remodel. I hated the batch feed. The bottom of the stopper would get all grungy and tiny bits of brillo pads would stick to the magnets that turn the thing on. Also, popcorn kernels and other small, hard bits of food could get stuck in the mechanism and would prevent the magnets from engaging. Couldn't wait to get rid of it.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 9:22PM
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I used to have batch feed, then continuous feed with a switch under the sink cupboard (I hated that switch). I didn't want a switch on the wall that could be confused with a light switch. In my remodel I chose continuous feed GD with a fiber optic controller switch. I'm very happy with it.

While the batch feed is safest in that there is no way at all to put your hand in the disposal while it is on, the continuous feed is not particularly unsafe. You would really have to try hard to hurt yourself on it. The grinding part is not razor sharp blades, just metal plates. They're at the bottom of the chamber, so you'd have to reach down the 9" or more of the sink, then maybe another 5". A small child could not do it easily. I think I read somewhere that continuous feed units have smaller chambers, so they take up less room under the sink.

If you prefer a batch feed for some of the good reasons given in other posts, there are still good options for batch feed units, both Insinkerator and Waste King. You want at least 3/4HP. I've never seen anything but a SS and black magnetic cover switch. Sink stoppers come in various materials, but they don't turn on the GD.

Air switches and fiber optic switches for continuous feed units, which are small flat circles on the counter, come in a variety of finishes.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2012 at 12:45PM
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I think I'm going to go with the continuous feed and an air switch. I will have to buy a flange in oil rubbed bronze (I assume they make those). Any advice on which GD to buy. I'd like to keep it under $200

    Bookmark   September 7, 2012 at 4:03PM
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I have the Insinkerator Evolution Pro Compact, 3/4HP, and it works for me. 1HP is even better, if you can get it at your price. I would not recommend a Badger or anything less than 3/4HP.

Some people love Insinkerators, some love Waste King. There are discussions of the brands over on Appliances.

And yes, they definitely make ORB flanges for air switches and fiber optic switches.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 8:42AM
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Nycbluedevil - I have a Waste King batch feed, and it is not operated by a magnet. That's one of the reasons why I chose the Waste King brand (the other reasons are the large size of its chamber, the higher torque than the Insinkerator, and the long in-home warranty). My Waste King 3/4 hp batch feed operates by a slot inside the cover - when you push on the cover, the slot pushes a button that is down inside the drain, which operates the disposal. No magnet. And no switch needed in my backsplash or counter. And no slimy rubber flange.

Going back to Niki3sons' OP, since you are seeking to replace your existing batch feed disposal, if you choose instead a continuous feed disposal, you will have to install a switch in your backsplash or counter top, so it may be easier for you to have again a batch feed. I recommend a 3/4 hp because they are better-made than lower-hp models, have better warranties, and the Waste Kings aren't so expensive. The two negatives are that the cover is black (no option for stainless or anything else), and it is noisy, but neither of these bother me. Everything has its pros and cons.

Here is a link that might be useful: Waste King Batch Feed 9900TC

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 1:06PM
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"These work by a magnetic connection in your sink stopper. Turn it one way to engage, another to just drain, and flip it over for the stopper effect. "

The switches routinely fail beofre anything else on the units.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 2:02PM
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