Can You Put Watermelon Rinds in a Garbage Disposal?

If you doubt whether to dispose of watermelon rind in the garbage disposal, you’re better off not doing it. You should throw away not all leftover food at the garbage disposal. Regardless of how advanced or powerful, rubbish disposals are not designed to handle all types of garbage or food.

If you have a trash compactor, the last thing you want to have keeps breaking down. Because these containers are so simple to use, it’s all too tempting to throw everything and anything inside.

This article reveals if rind and watermelon seeds can be disposed of in your garbage disposal. If you don’t want to damage your equipment, read on to find out what NOT to dispose of in your garbage disposal unit.

Can Watermelon Go Down a Garbage Disposal?

Technically, yes. However, it’s not safe to dispose of watermelon rind and seeds in a garbage disposal. The rind of a watermelon is dense, fibrous, and challenging to dispose of in large portions.

If you put the rinds in the waste disposal, you risk damaging the blades or overworking the engine. Should you damage your waste compactor, the repairs might run well into hundreds of dollars.

If you must put them in the garbage, take the effort to break up the rinds into tiny pieces.

How Can You Dispose of Watermelon Rinds?

The simplest way to dispose of watermelon rinds is to toss them in a trash can rather than the disposal system. Furthermore, the peel can be composted and serve as a green fertilizer source, providing moisture, nitrogen, and nutrients that aid in composting.

Additionally, you can dispose of your watermelon peels in your yard. There are, however, a few factors to bear in mind. The skin of the watermelon is firm and takes time to decompose in a heap, so it’s better to slice it into tiny chunks first.

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What Other Food Should Not Go in The Garbage Disposal?

1. Coffee Grounds

Don’t let them fool you while they seem to be milled well; coffee grounds are exceptionally tightly packed and paste-like when removed from a filter. If you put this down your garbage disposal, you’ll wind up with a buildup of mucky sediment in the pipe, increasing the probability of a blockage.

2. Pasta, Bread, and Rice

What do all three of these items have in common? They absorb water and expand, increasing clogging drains and pipes. Don’t worry too much over a bit of pasta that falls down the garbage disposal, but don’t make it a habit of doing so.

If you must dispose of rice, pasta, or bread in the garbage, let it run for around 30 seconds before flushing it down the sink with cold water to prevent the grains from expanding. Any grains that can absorb water, such as oats, should also NOT go into a garbage disposal unit.

3. Animal Bones

Although they’re built to last, garbage disposals are not unbreakable. It’s not designed to grind extremely hard items. On the other hand, anything bigger or harder will just spin about, damaging the grinding gears. Waste such as bones can drastically reduce the lifetime of your garbage disposal. Dropping a fish or a chicken bone in the drain shouldn’t worry you too much, though.

4. Nuts and Shells

As is the case with bones, nuts and shells can be extremely detrimental to your garbage grinder. Additionally, soft nuts, like peanuts, aren’t recommended for disposal.

The garbage grinder functions similarly to a nut grinder, whose result is, you guessed it, peanut butter! Perhaps not the same as the jarred peanut butter, but a relatively dense peanut paste that could easily jam your drainage.

5. Pits and Seeds

If you can’t cut it with a knife, it’s probably not a good idea to throw it at your disposal. Seeds and pits are typically spherical and tiny, making grinding them even more difficult. And don’t forget the awful sound they make as they bounce around in the disposal. Save your grinder the effort and discard them in the trash can.

Can You Put Watermelon Seeds in a Garbage Disposal?

From watermelon to carrot peels, all your waste should go in the trash can and not the garbage disposal. Besides getting plunged in the disposal for a long time, seeds, just like groundnuts, can make a paste that could clog your pipes.

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Whereas hard peels can be extremely harmful, even tiny skins can easily get wrapped in the blades of your disposal, becoming lodged in the system for an extended period.

For citrus peels, small portions are acceptable and might even help eliminate unpleasant odors. On the other hand, anything larger than a lime wedge or a tiny lemon should be discarded in the trash can.

Can You Put Fruit Peels in a Garbage Disposal?

You should dump vegetable grinds and fruit peels in the trash. Fruit and vegetable grind and skins can become entangled in the blades. If this occurs, the garbage disposal will be unable to function correctly.

If you have to discard this waste at the garbage disposal, do it in modest amounts and under cold running water.

How To Clear Your Garbage Disposal When It Gets Clogged?

Step 1: Turn Off the Power Switch

Because safety is paramount, NEVER put anything you don’t intend to shred and grind into your garbage disposal when it’s powered on. The switch is typically located beneath the cabinet, on an adjacent wall, or close to the removal in the majority of systems. When you’re unable to find it, switch off the main power panel’s breaker.

Avoid inserting your hand inside the disposal—even if the power has been turned off. Your switch may be malfunctioning, turning the system on suddenly.

Step 2: Check Your Garbage Disposal

If there’s a blockage, you might see the obstruction by looking inside the disposal; when you see something you can easily reach, grasp it with pliers or tongs and trash it in a bin instead. After that, you’ll want to inspect the disposal; a torch can come in handy too.

In some instances, when you switch on the garbage disposal unit, you may hear the engine start and buzz, even if the macerators are not spinning. This indicates that the system is likely stuck.

Step 3: Use a Natural Cleaner

If the blockage is caused by food waste accumulation, combine half a  cup vinegar and a quarter cup of baking soda to make a homemade cleaning fluid. Combine the solution thoroughly and dump it down the drain. Wait for 10 to 20 minutes before pouring hot water down the drain.

Using a homemade cleaner to unclog most food waste and FOG jams is an efficient technique to unblock the drainage.

Step 4: Plunge the Drain

If the homemade cleaner doesn’t work, you’ll have to resort to using a plunger—one of the best ways to clear clogged drains and sinks. It’s a good idea to clip off the dishwasher connecting hose before plunging the drain. This prevents filthy and smelly drainage water from recirculating up into the washer.

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Once you disconnect the washer line, position the plunger firmly over the drainage, ensuring it completely covers it. Fill the sink with water until it reaches the neck of the nozzle. After that, plunge the drains till the water begins to flow. If it’s flowing freely, it indicates that the disposal has been unclogged. Pour hot water inside the drain to eliminate any residue.

Step 5: Turn the Disposal’s Blades

We cannot emphasize this enough. In some instances, the system can be constrained. You’ll need to spin the blades manually and pick up any trash. TURN OFF YOUR DISPOSAL ENTIRELY BEFORE INSERTING YOUR HAND.

You can either reach using your hand (or preferably a tool like a wooden spoon) down into the drain or check under the disposal to locate the operator for turning the impeller blades. As you turn the blades, you’ll either break down the clog or at least rotate it so that you can grab it manually. In some cases, you might need to use an Allen wrench to turn the edges.

6. Clean the P-Trap

Typically, the waste disposal unit is connected to a P-trap or S-trap pipe (curved as P or an S). Plunging may fail to solve the problem in some instances due to an accumulation of trash in the P-trap. In this scenario, the best method of removing the waste is to disconnect the trap and wash the pipes.

Put a collecting bucket beneath the drainage trap, and use pliers to release the trap’s slip-nut fittings and remove them. Let waste foods and stagnant water drain inside the bucket.

Examine the traps and wipe them if they have debris. If the water is clear, inspect the trap arm, the horizontal pipe linking the P-trap to the branch drainage pipe. As required, wipe the trap arm. If you cannot remove the drainage pipe(s) completely, use a coat hanger or similar object to loosen any clogs physically.

Unclogging the drainage system with a drainage auger or snake is another option that works flawlessly. Based on the size of your property, it may be worthwhile to purchase a simple, manually powered drain snake to keep on hand in case of stubborn clogs. It’s a versatile gadget that you’ll be grateful to have should you need to unclog stubborn drains.

About Sarah Walker

Sarah is a homemaker and is passionate about fixing little things in and around her house. She loves to do DIY hacks and keeps on writing about those things in her blog. When she is not writing, she keeps herself busy with her twins Cathy and Mickey.