The area below your kitchen sink should always be dry. If you notice any signs of dampness, such as water pooling at the bottom of the cabinet, stored items are wet, or wood rot starting to develop, you could have a leak, and the culprit is most likely the garbage disposal. If you are uncomfortable with troubleshooting and performing the repair yourself, contact a plumber in Provo.
If you’re up to the task of investigating the source of the leak and repairing it, here are the steps you need to take.
Test the Garbage Disposal
To find the leak, you’ll need to test the garbage disposal. Disconnect it from its power source and shut down power to the area from the breaker box. Place a sink stopper in the skin. Dry the disposal unit if it’s wet. With food coloring mixed in water, pour it on top of the sink stopper.
Below the sink, examine the disposal for any sign of leaking water. Use a white rag to dab around and if it picks up color, you’ve found the source.
Any leaks near the top of the unit will reveal themselves while the stopper is in place. If you don’t find them near the top, unplug the stopper and start searching around the lower connectors and bottom of the unit.
Once You’ve Located the Leak
Once you’ve located the leak, you can take action to fix it. If the leak was near the top of the disposal, you can reseal the flange with plumber’s putty. Be sure to remove any old plumber’s putty first. Once you’ve applied the putty, tighten the bolts under the sink to form a tight seal.
If the leak was coming from the side of the garbage disposal, you can tighten the drain line connections. For the hose going to the dishwasher, tighten the metal clamp with a screwdriver.
If it was the connection going to the sewer line, remove the pipe and check the rubber gasket inside the pipe. If it looks worn, it needs to be replaced.
If the bottom of the disposal was leaking, it’s most likely you need a new unit. Contact a plumber in Provo to install one for you.
Always fix a leaking garbage disposal to prevent further damage. Garbage disposal issues can be relatively easy to diagnose and repair yourself if you have some plumbing knowledge. If you’ve never worked on plumbing before, it may be best to contact a plumber in Provo for best results.