How Much Does It Cost To Fix A Garbage Disposal?

As many homeowners know, there are quite a few things that can go wrong with their garbage disposal. Maybe it hasn't been performing the same ever since you accidentally dropped that shot glass in, or perhaps it has stopped powering up for no discernable reason whatsoever. Either way, when your garbage disposal stops working, it's only natural that you'd like to know approximately how much you'll be paying when you call for a repair.

According to Home Advisor, the average cost for repairing your garbage disposal is about $250. Of course, depending on what's wrong with your system, the actual price that you'll pay may be considerably more or less than this average. If you intend to seek professional help, the hourly rate that your plumber charges will also be a factor. Keep in mind that while the hourly rate of a master plumber will be high compared to that of an apprentice plumber, a master plumber is more likely to get to the heart of the issue quickly, without wasting precious time troubleshooting the problem.

Is it worth it?

Given the average cost to repair a garbage disposal, many homeowners may come to the conclusion that the juice isn't quite worth the squeeze, so to speak. There's certainly no shortage of quality garbage disposals on the market that can be purchased for less than $250, so it makes sense that seeking a repair is not everyone's first choice. However, those who invested in a premium garbage disposal can likely save a good deal of money by opting for a repair instead of replacing their top-dollar unit.

According to Fixr, there are a number of common garbage disposal issues that will run you $100 or less on average to fix. For instance, repairing or replacing a worn seal will usually cost considerably less than replacing your entire garbage disposal, especially if you opted for an expensive unit with plenty of grinding power. On the other hand, repairing or replacing a garbage disposal motor can be quite expensive, especially for high-end models. For this reason, it's important to factor in the cost of your initial investment before signing off on a pricey repair.

Give DIY a try

Sometimes your garbage disposal can be brought back to life by your own effort, costing you nothing more than your time. According to Bob Vila, checking to make sure that your garbage disposal is properly plugged into your AC outlet is the first thing that you should do whenever the system seems unresponsive after you switch it on. While this may sound like a silly tip, you'd be surprised at how many people have called in a plumber only to realize that there was nothing truly wrong with their garbage disposal to begin with. 

On the other hand, if your garbage disposal stopped working shortly after it was loaded to the brim with, say, Thanksgiving food scraps, it may have simply overheated due to an oversized workload. In this case, locating and pressing your unit's "restart" button might be enough to remedy the problem. You can usually find the restart button on the side of your garbage disposal, although many models place it on the bottom of the unit for easier access. Speaking of the bottom of your garbage disposal, also be sure to check the small hexagonal opening located there. In many cases, you can use the hex wrench that came with your garbage disposal here in order to quickly loosen up a jam.