Don’t Call the Plumber!

I had a big cleaning day, yesterday.  I vacuumed, I mopped, I straightened, I organized… all with the help of my two munchkins.  I even finished packing lunch for the super fun playdate we had today.  BUT… just after I finished packing said lunches, Hubby looked at me and said, “That’s brave,” in reference to the carrot peels I had in the sink… and I told him, “I’ve fixed a garbage disposal before!,” in response.  Oops!

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Of course, before he even left the kitchen, it started…  I tried to do everything right… I had the water running before I introduced the peels, I added them slowly… I hate my garbage disposal!!! It jammed, despite my best efforts.

So… the job began, and Hubby quietly left the kitchen.  In his defense, I really CAN handle these things myself, and he really DID have to work.  So, it wasn’t totally obnoxious.  *wink wink*

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I keep A LOT of stuff under my kitchen sink.  I have child locks, to keep my babies safe, and it’s usually not a problem… unless I have to work on the disposal and plumbing.  Argh.

Just in case you are reading this, thinking that maybe you can do this one day… You can.  But… you’ll want to get a few things ready first.  Lots of paper towels, a spare toothbrush, a bottle brush, spare containers and a good degreaser were all used in my efforts last night.

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First, I opened the pipes at the connection from the “T” connection where the garbage disposal meets the sink connection and they head out.  I had a dish underneath for drippings.  Thankfully, most of the water had already gone down around the gunk.  But there was plenty of ewww…

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Then, I removed the part that connected to the garbage disposal and cleaned that out.  And piece by piece, I removed them all.  NOTE:  I was VERY glad I took photos during this process because when it came time to put it back together, I was a little tired, and a lot confused.  :)

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When I got to the Trap (the round part at the bottom,) I put the bowl underneath and prepared for a mess… which I got.  Can’t help it, there.  And, more eww…

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The worst part of them all was at the back, the final piece that I can’t remove.  Oh my word!!!

By this point, the smell was disgusting and I was feeling more than a little overwhelmed.  I mean, take a moment to picture me, on the floor, with all of what WAS under the sink on the floor, and me trying to do this and take photos and parent (Yeah, the kids were with me…) ad keep them from spraying themselves with 409 and then this ewww!  Oh Boy.

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I ended up using an old bottle brush that is usually only used for our outdoor fountain at this point, and I got to spraying the inside of the pipe with cleaner and then scrubbing and attempting to clean with paper towels.

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I say again, ewwww…  I put all of the pipe parts into a container with a mixture of hot water and cleaner/ degreaser and got to scrubbing them all.

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The results were pretty amazing.  And disgusting.  13-DSC00729

Ultimately, I was floored by the amount of buildup in the pipes, and I’m even more curious what there is past the point where I could clean.  Wow.

But… all said and done, I did figure out how to get it all back together… and I did get it running again.  And despite the fact that I risked doing this all again, I DID run it and feed all of the nastiness right back down the sink… I mean, where else would I put it?  And… it worked.  I think the clog was a 50/50 Carrots / Gunk.  So… Momma Win!

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Not all jobs are fun, or glamorous, but knowing that I saved our family from needing to pay for a plumber bill or my husband from working on that after he worked late anyway… it’s a good feeling.  Totally worth it.  Stupid Carrots.  NO, stupid garbage disposal.  I think that’s going to be my Birthday wish… a better garbage disposal!

That playdate that I was prepping carrots for… ALSO a total win.  So, it was a good day in our house.  Can’t let a clog get me down!  Have a great day!

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