How to Sharpen Garbage Disposal Blades: The Do’s and Don’ts

how to sharpen garbage disposal blades

If you’ve ever seen garbage disposal at work, you may already be enamored with the way it works. It is usually situated under your kitchen sink and absorbing all your meal and other sink waste almost like magic! It’s a common misconception, however, to think about its working. Outwardly, the garbage disposal system looks like it may be fixed in with blades that are responsible and in making short work of the waste. The term “garbage disposal blades”, too, can contribute to this misleading notion. 

The garbage disposal system is fitted with a series of mechanisms that all use physics to keep it working. There are no sharp blades inside the garbage disposal – at least, not the kind you may be thinking of. There are impellers that use centrifugal force to throw your food into a shredder ring. The sharp grooves on the lining of the shredder ring are what’s actually responsible for disintegrating the waste. More than cutting, this process is more akin to grinding and compressing waste in the grinding chamber. 

The sharp grooves are what the garbage disposal “blades” actually are – and when you’re throwing in greasy substances into the system, they stick to the blades and make them blunt over time. However, there are ways on how to sharpen garbage disposal blades for even older units, so that you can ensure that they’re running efficiently for years. 

Ways to Sharpen Garbage Disposal Blades

Luckily, it does not require plumbing expertise to be sharpening your garbage disposal blades to ensure for highest durability. Let’s see how you can do this:

1. Use Egg Shells: Do egg shells sharpen disposal blades? While a lot of experts advocate against using eggshells while sharpening garbage disposal blades, it can have some surprising benefits in low quantities. In large quantities, it is possible that the membrane of the eggshells may get caught up in the blades of the garbage disposal unit. In small quantities, however, they can scour the garbage disposal blades and sharpen them simultaneously. Something you’re going to want to make sure is that after you’ve fed eggshells into the garbage disposal unit, run some water into it as well to make sure nothing is stuck in the blades.

2. Use Ice Cubes: If you’re wondering “does ice sharpen garbage disposal blades” well, they definitely do! Using ice cubes is actually the most recommended technique of sharpening garbage disposal blades. The reason why this is the number-one-sought-after method is because of their hard property and also their ability to melt after a while. This ensures that they don’t get stuck in the garbage disposal unit and also cleans up the blades efficiently. Overall, it is definitely recommended to use ice cubes while the garbage disposal system is still running. 

3. Use Hot water and Soap: Using soapy water is one of the most ingenious methods of sharpening garbage disposal blades. Like ice cubes, it too ensures that there’s no residue left behind after the sharpening process so you can rest assured with this one. What you need to do here is fill your kitchen sink with the hot water and soap mixture, then drain it immediately into the garbage disposal unit. After all the water has drained, switch on the unit and let the blades sharpen themselves with ease. After this process is done, run some cold water into the unit to wash out the soapy water, and it’ll be as good as new!

How to Not Try to Sharpen Garbage Disposal Blades

Using Glass: It’s a common misconception to think that using glass is the optimal way to sharpen the blades in your garbage disposal system. It is actually untrue, as this may do more harm than good. Not only does it not sharpen the garbage disposal blades, if you put glass into your garbage disposal system, then it can shatter completely and damage the blades thereby causing a weird rattling noise. It can also ruin the coating of zinc that is over the blades, make them even duller than they previously were. It is possible that these shards of glass may get stuck inside the garbage disposal unit, and broken glass in sink disposal is a definite no-no. 

Along similar lines, there’s a whole bunch of kitchen waste that you should be really careful about throwing them down your disposal unit. Here’s a quick roundup of things that you should not be preferably putting in your garbage disposal.


As we have seen, it is incredibly simple to maintain the upkeep of your garbage disposal units. If you own a garbage disposal unit, then you already have most of your work done for you. All you have to do to take proper care of your garbage disposal is making sure you’re not putting in too many substances at once, or any greasy substances. If you do so, then over time these substances can make your garbage disposal blades extremely dull. Lucky for you, there are a few simple things you can do in order to get them nice and sharp once again! You can restore them back to new by using simple materials in no time at all.

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