Garbage Disposal Buying Guide

When buying a garbage disposal unit there are several key factors to look at and research in order to determine which garbage disposal is right for you. Among the most important factors to look at are horsepower, feed type (continuous or batch feed), and durability. There are other factors which I will mention, but these three are probably the most crucial.  So, let’s get started. Make sure to check out our Garbage Disposal Reviews after reading this guide.

Garbage Disposal Horsepower

Garbage disposal units normally come in three variations of horsepower and most people are not sure how much power they actually need. As a general rule, the horsepower of the unit should correlate to the usage it will receive. More horsepower will give you more grinding power.

½ Horsepower Garbage Disposal

This type of garbage disposal is ideal for individuals who live in an apartment or condo in which the unit will not receive excessive use.

¾ Horsepower Garbage Disposal

Three quarter horsepower is the most common type of garbage disposal and is typically found in single family homes. It has enough power for the family, but should not be abused – make sure you never put anything down the garbage disposal that you would not eat one sitting.

1 Horsepower Garbage Disposal

These units are good for heavy use and homes that have a big family. They can also be used in an office where a lot of people will use it.

Garbage Disposal Feed Type – Continuous Feed Vs Batch Feed

Continuous Feed Garbage Disposal
This type of garbage disposal is the most common and can be found in most kitchens. Continuous feed only operates when a switch is turned on and can be fed waste “continually” while the unit is running. To operate you must turn on the water first and then switch on the garbage disposal and feed the waste down the sink hole until you are done then you turn off the unit and then the water.

Batch Feed Garbage Disposal
These are similar to the continuous feed models, but they do not have an automatic switch to turn it on. Instead, they require a plug to be placed in the drain and turned. This will turn the unit on and when you are finished you need to turn the plug the other way to turn it off.

Garbage Disposal Durability

Most of the complaints with garbage disposals that I have seen are about the unit leaking water.  Sometimes it is because the unit was not installed properly or because something is wrong with pipes. However, sometimes the garbage disposal unit itself is the cause of the leakage. You need to make sure that the unit you buy includes stainless steel grinding chambers, stainless steel drums will not rust through (this is a typical cause of leaks or failures)

Additional things to look for

Ease of installation
Most new garbage disposals are pretty easy to install and if you are replacing an old unit just make sure you have the right PVC pipes and connectors. You should also check your sink cabinet space to confirm that you will have enough space to install the unit you buy.

Sound Proofing
Unless you like to yell when you are talking make sure you invest in a unit that has some type of sound proofing. Read buyer reviews and see what they are saying about the unit’s noise levels

Our Recommendations for the Best Garbage Disposal

Below are some of the more popular garbage disposals on the market and our recommendations for the type of use:

1/2 Horsepower Category

Waste King L-2600 Legend Series 1/2 HP Continuous Feed Operation Waste Disposer

  • ½ Horsepower
  • Continuous Feed
  • Stainless Steel grinding components
  • Easy to Install
  • Good sound proof

3/4 Horsepower Category

InSinkErator Evolution Compact 3/4 HP Household Garbage Disposal

  • ¾ Horsepower
  • Continuous Feed (Multi-Grind Technology)
  • Stainless Steel grinding components
  • Easy to Install – Ideal for restricted cabinet space
  • Excellent sound proof (Sound Seal Technology)

1 Horsepower Category

Waste King Legend 8000 Series 1.0-Horsepower Continuous Feed Operation Garbage Disposal Amazon’s Bestseller

  • 1 Horsepower
  • Continuous Feed, reduced jamming
  • Stainless Steel grinding components
  • Fast and easy mount system
  • Very quite

**Worthy Mention** Although more expensive, this next unit is the “Big Daddy” of garbage disposals – amazingly powerful and quite.

InSinkErator Evolution Excel 1.0 HP Household Food Waste Disposer

  • Auto-reversing 1 horsepower motor, which is pretty much impossible to jam
  • Continuous feed, 3 grinding stages (Multi-grind technology)
  • Stainless Steel grinding components
  • Quick Lock sink mount for easy installation (It’s big so make sure you have space)
  • Excellent sound proof (Sound Seal Plus Technology)

I hope you found our garbage disposal buying guide useful and informative!

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