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How to Reset a Garbage Disposal?

Most times, it seems like the garbage disposal doesn’t want to work and all we need to do is hit the reset button. It is an overload RED button beneath the disposal that is used as a reboot for the disposal.

Problems like overheating, clogging, or light fault will indicate a reset by shutting down voluntarily. But, the question now is how to reset a garbage disposal.

Where Can I Find The Garbage Disposal Reset Button And What Is It?

If food debris blocks the disposal drain pipe, it overworks itself and so the engine doesn’t have enough capacity to power the disposal. In other words, the engine has cut power and would need a restart to function properly. So if you continue using the disposal you’re probably going to spoil it.

This is where the reset button comes in, in order not to damage the disposal motor when it gets clogged, you could ease it with the button. It is basically a button that cuts electrical flow when the component is overworked. Switching it on revives the electricity and ensures the disposal is working again.

The reset button is usually located beneath the disposal unit. This depends on the category of disposal as different models have different locations. While models like Badger and InSinkErator pitch it beneath the unit, the Moen and waste king type as it at the sides.

Now you know where to find it, let’s teach you how to reset garbage disposal.

Steps on How to Reset a Garbage Disposal

You should know by now that before any act of sustenance at your disposal you should turn off entirely the electricity to avoid electrocution. Detach the unit from the sockets before commencing the following steps

  • The first thing you should do after energy is turn off is to look out if there are any items clogging the disposal. You could find this out by using a glint of light to check the drainage path for pieces of hardware like jewelry.
  • Extract it with a wrench or pair of pliers, but don’t use your hands to avoid wounds.
  • Look beneath the disposal unit, you’ll see the red button, that is the garbage disposal reset button. Check the manual to know the exact location if you can’t find it.
  • Push the reset button inside to start the rest process
  • Sometimes when you push the button it jumps out again, just give it a little time then hit it.
  • If you have done this and the reset procedure has ended, test the drain pipes with water and restart the disposal
  • Make sure you check all functions of the disposal to be certain they are undamaged
  • If there’still an anomaly like the burton will stay out or constantly requiring a reset, you may have to call in the professionals

What to Do If Garbage Disposal Doesn’t Work After Pressing Reset Button

1. Unclog the Disposal

After the reset process, the garbage disposal should work just fine if it is done correctly. But if it still shows signs of abnormal procedure, you should try to check if anything has impeded it from working. Remember before any repair action cut the electrical power entirely to avoid sudden restart.

When you’re sure the power is out completely, you can go ahead and unclog the disposal through these steps

  • Use a wrench inside the barrel that houses the rotating machine
  • Use the wrench to manually spin the disposal’s rotating machine from left to right a number of times. This is to ensure that there is no material stucked in its slicing blade. You can add water to ease the process and spin until the clogs are removed.
  • Revive the electricity and run the reset procedure again
  • This should get the disposal back to regular functioning again, otherwise, replay the process.

Check if everything is right. But if you have tried every other thing and it seems there are still issues with the disposal,

2. Find out If the Disposal Is Stuck

  • Check the electrical setting. It is located beneath the sink surface. Disconnect the disposal cable and try to insert the microwave or power kettle. Check if they are working fine but if it doesn’t check if power has been cut by the circuit breaker.
  • Maybe the outlet felt a twitch and cut power to avoid overload, so just switch it on again, the devices should be working. Test the disposal again to see if it’s back to working order. If it’s not, you’ll have to run the reset again.
  • For protective measure, you need to do a reset when your disposal has overworked itself to breakdown point. Consider it the same way a circuit breaker cuts the electrical flow if it notices the irregularity. In the case of the disposal, the reset button just shoots out to indicate overload.
  • For it to work again, go beneath the sink panel, and find the canister that supports the disposal, locate the reset switch, and hit it in. Don’t switch on until after some time so that it will cool. You can turn it on, making the disposal to function properly.

3. Garbage Disposal Reset Button Stops Functioning?

There are cases where the reset button stops working, which means that the slicing plate requires liberty to turn without hindrance. This procedure tells you how to reset garbage disposal with Allen wrench


  • Allen wrench
  • Plunging device


  • Remove the garbage Disposal cable from the electric panel under the sink to cut power entirely
  • Stick in the tail end of the Allen wrench to unshackle the rotor left to right to expel any clog. Ensure that you punch in the wrench to the underside of the equipment to clear it well.
  • Put the hand of the plunging device through the drainage system of the disposal on top of the sink. With the device, turn the slicing pane at the underside of the disposal to expel the clog.
  • Flush the garbage disposal with running water, but first, insert the cable back to power panel at the bottom of the sink
  • After sometime hit the ready button to check if it’s functioning properly if it’s not yet functioning, give it five minutes, and try again.

4. Call an Expert

If you’re diyer and have gone through the processes of how to reset a garbage disposal YouTube edition and still no improvement, call in an expert. The major cause might be an electrical problem that only professionals can handle.

Wrap Up

Most times the best option to keep the machine in working order is to restart it and that’s what we’ve shown you on how to reset garbage disposal. If there are things you don’t quite understand or missed, here is a summary:

  • Reset buttons are located at the bottom or side of the sink depending on the disposal type
  • Always switch off the power before you repair anything on the disposal
  • If the reset doesn’t work, give it some time and try again. Also, try to unclog the slicing pane.

You can ask us more questions in the comment section.

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