Stinky garbage disposerI walked into the kitchen yesterday and a really bad smell was lurking over near the sink. That ever happen to you? One day everything’s fine and then suddenly…it’s truly not. The source of the smell wasn’t immediately obvious, so I ran through the possibilities: 12-year-old son’s wretched socks? Nope. Garbage can? Nope. A closer sniff. Garbage disposer? Yep.

Got a stinky disposer?  Here’s how to clean it:

1. Run cold water and drop in a few slices of orange or lemon peels. Run the disposer for five seconds, then turn off the water and the disposer. Citric acid from the peels will soften accumulated food and attack smelly bacteria. Give the acid about 15 minutes to work.

2. Turn on the water and the disposer and drop in a few ice cubes to "sandblast" the disposer clean.

3. Plug the drain and fill the sink half full. Then pull the plug and let the accumulated water flush the disposer and pipes clean.

— Elisa Bernick, Associate Editor


Got a tough cleaning problem?  Check out our articles for solutions to your toughest cleaning challenges:
- Top 10 Household Cleaning Tips: The Tough Problems
- Quick Cleaning Tips