How to Get Glass out of Garbage Disposal

How to Get Glass out of Garbage Disposal 2Garbage Disposal units can surely make our lives easier. However, if food wrappers were the only thing you were disposing of in them, then you would not have been reading this. Glass is the last thing that you ever want to dispose of in a Garbage Disposal. It is needless to say that things can become pretty dangerous if you do not clean the Glass up on time. If the Glass has further broken into small shards, then this is even more of a serious situation that you need to address accordingly.

Now cleaning up Glass shards from a Garbage Disposal is not as straight forward as it sounds. Many problems could come along the way. Therefore, we will see some steps you must follow to get the job done safely. Without further ado, let’s see how to get Glass out of a Garbage Disposal.

Step 1: Shut the Garbage Disposal Power

People often do not consider this, but turning the power off before you clean a Garbage Disposal is extremely important. If you are not careful, then you can potentially find yourself with a couple of lost fingers and running to the hospital.

To turn the power off, you could either unplug the Garbage Disposal. However, to be on the safe side switch the main power of your house directly from the breaker as well.

Step 2: Equip Proper Safety Gear

There is one thing that you always want to keep in mind, whenever there is broken Glass involved, you always want to fully prepare yourself. Now, most people may be thinking about wearing safety gloves, but that is not the only thing necessary. In fact, you need to consider wearing safety goggles as well.

When you are picking the Glass shards apart from the Garbage Disposal unit, you never know when it may be your bad day. There is always the chance that while picking the Glass shards, one of them may be lodged towards your eyes from the Garbage Disposal. This is why, just to be on the safe side, you might as well wear safety goggles too. On the other hand, the importance of safety gloves is pretty self-explanatory.

Step 3: Start with Bigger Pieces

We know that it can be tempting for you to quickly get the job done. The chances are that you would start by picking up the smaller shards first. However, this should be avoided because not only would it take more time but also, increase the chances of an injury. The last thing you would want is to manoeuvre around the bigger pieces to find smaller ones. This sounds like a disastrous idea, to begin with.

One thing you should note is that, when you are picking up Glass pieces, do not directly do it with your hands. Even if you have gloves on, it is not really a safe thing to do. The best approach to clear the Garbage Disposal would be to use tweezers. If you do not have that, then you could go for needle-nose pliers. Using your bare hands should only be your last resort. Even then, it is never recommended.

Even if the power is cut, the main reason why you should avoid using your hands is due to the chances of an injury. You never know how far down the Glass shards may be. The last thing you want is to complicate a simple thing, and potentially get a cut on your hand. So, you should arrange the necessary tools to get the job done safely.

How to Get Glass out of Garbage Disposal 3Step 4: Turn the Disposal Over Manually

This might be tempting from the start, but trust us when we say that you do not want to do it. Flipping the Garbage Disposal from the beginning can save you a bit of time, but it is not worth it because of the risk it carries. Make sure that before your Garbage Disposal is turned, you have taken out the majority of the Glass pieces. Usually, you would want to turn it over to take the small shards out.

If you do try turning the Garbage Disposal over without proper cleaning, then you can potentially hurt yourself. There is always a chance that a bigger Glass piece may fall and injure you in the process. However, turning the Garbage Disposal is undoubtedly going to make it much easier for you to collect the small shards. This is especially true for the ones that are stuck way at the bottom and require some resistance.

Step 5: Remove Remaining Glass with Wet-Dry Vacuum

This is entirely optional and depends if you have a wet-dry vacuum cleaner. If you do not, you can skip this step. However, if you do, then it is worth putting your vacuum cleaner to good use. Even when you do everything we mentioned above, Glass shards can be persistent. This is why you can use the incredible suction power of your vacuum cleaner to make your Garbage Disposal as clean as a slate.

To truly be sure that you have successfully removed all the Glass from the Garbage Disposal, you should notice the grinding sound. As soon as you realise that the grinding sound has stopped coming from your vacuum, your job is done. So, if you do have a wet-dry vacuum at home, it is worth using it.

Step 6: Assess the Damage

Although it is rare, there is still a chance that the Glass Shards stuck in the blades of your Garbage Disposal may have damaged it. Before you turn your Garbage Disposal back on, it is worth assessing the damage.

Carefully inspect your Garbage Disposal unit to see if you find anything out of the ordinary. Once you are sure that everything looks clear, put it back at its place before turning the power back on. In extreme cases, if you do find that your Garbage Disposal has been damaged too much, then do consider replacing it.

How to Get Glass out of Garbage Disposal 4Step 7: Turn on the Power

You can either call a plumbing service to help you reinstall it, or you can do it on your own. However, most people prefer to make it a DIY project. Installing a Garbage Disposal is pretty straightforward. Especially if you just removed it on your own. You can always follow the instructions manual of your Garbage Disposal to see how it is installed.

So, once you have taken care of the installation, turn on the power! Cross your fingers and hope that everything works fine. If you do not hear any weird sounds from the Garbage Disposal, and it works fine, then this means your mission was a success.


As simple as it may sound, there is a fair share of problems that one could face when taking out the Glass from a Garbage Disposal. This is why, to stay on the safe side, make sure that you go through the instructions. After all, Glass shards can be dangerous and even the slightest of negligence can result in an injury.

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