How to Install a Garbage Disposer—Part 2


Part 2: Finish Removing Old Disposer & Remove Disposer Throat

Included in this video: Complete undersink disconnection of old disposer; remove old unit from undersink moorings; remove old disposer throat.


Video Transcript Outline: Part 2:  Finish Removing Old Disposer & remove disposer throat

Finish Removing Old Disposer

1.  Remove remaining parts of P-trap.
DIY Tech TipTech Tip: Some videos suggest leaving everything that is not actually connected to disposer in place. I suggest removing everything up to the trap adapter to 1) Give you as much room to work as possible and because 2) It is likely you will have to adjust their position anyway to connect new disposer.

DIY Tech Tip

Tech Tip: Save trap parts unless they are damaged until you have finished connecting and testing new dispoer. It can be handy to have extra parts if things don’t go exactly as planned.
2.  Empty your pot/bowl of water and place upside down to underneath disposer. This will help catch it if it come off unexpectedly.
3.  Loosen clamping ring from disposer throat. It will be locked into place and will need significant force to loosen. Tips:
     a.  Use either disposer wrench that came with new unit or hammer and screwdriver.
     b.  The direction to turn is counterclockwise if you are laying underneath the unit and looking up.

DIY Tech Tip

Tech Tip: Try to unlock and loosen but only go about ⅛ of turn. The disposer will then hang and can be removed by finishing turn by hand while holding onto old disposer. Then it won’t drop like a rock into cabinet.
4. Hold old disposer upright, finish removing from disposer throat if applicable, and empty water inside it into your pot/bowl.

Now you need to decide whether you are going to replace disposer throat. Consider the following to decide:
    a. Was the old one leaking at the sink, or beat up in some way?
    b.  Does the new one have the same mounting system as the old one? Most have the system shown in the video, regardless of brand. Compare to two side by side now to check.
    c.  Is one of the disposer throats better quality/ heavier than the other?
    If the throats are the same, and both are in good shape, you can leave the old one if you want and skip ahead to Part 3. If you decide to change your disposer throat, continue as follows:

Remove Disposer Throat

1.  Loosen long retaining screws on disposer throat. Back each one off about ½” inch to give you room to access the retaining ring on throat.

DIY Tech Tip

Tech Tip: Use phillips rather than straight screwdriver if possible.

2.  Remove retaining ring from disposer throat. To do this:
         a.  Locate break in retaining ring
         b.  Use flat screwdriver to pry one end of ring DOWN toward floor.
         c.  Once one end is out of groove and resting on main surface of throat beneath the groove, you can grab it with either your fingers, channel locks or continue pushing down and off surface with screwdriver. Ring will then pop right off.
3.  Loosen and remove top plate. Top plate is not screwed on at all–it is just slipped over throat but it may be hard to loosen and remove. If it is:
         a.  Use your trusty hammer and screwdriver to loosen until it begins to turn
         b.  Now you should be able to work it off, turning and pulling down simultaneously until it comes off.
         c. If you still can’t get it off, insert flat screwdriver between top plate and sink and pry down a bit. Do this at each “ear”.
         d.  You may need to hold disposer throat in place from top of sink to prevent it from turning while you work top plate off.  
         e. Continue using above techniques until you have it loosened and removed.
4.  Remove throat piece from top of sink.

DIY Tech Tip

Tech Tip: As with trap, do not discard pieces yet unless damaged.  It is handy to have extra parts in case they are needed for whatever reason as you install new disposer.
5.  Clean sink surfaces which seat the disposer throat on top and bottom until they are completely clean and shiny. THIS IS IMPORTANT. If there is old crumbly putty left in place, the water will find that defect, cut a groove eventually, and it will leak–maybe now, maybe later–but eventually it WILL leak if it’s not clean when putting in new throat.

If you are connecting an optional plug-in cord, or just want to laugh at Girl With Wrench, see Part 3. Otherwise, go directly to Part 4.

Next: Part Three: Prepare new garbage disposal—install separate plug-in type electrical cord


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