My Garbage Disposal Flywheel Is Stuck

The flywheel on a garbage disposal operates the impeller blades to chop up organic food waste and send it down the drain. When you turn on the garbage disposal and only hear a hum with no blade movement, the flywheel is stuck. Turn off the garbage disposal immediately to avoid tripping the reset button or circuit breaker. The garbage disposal flywheel is stuck due to an obstruction between the disposer and the impeller blades.

Step 1

Disconnect the electrical supply from your garbage disposal. Some units have a power cord you simply unplug from the dedicated outlet under the sink. Others are wired directly into the electrical system of your home. Turn off the circuit breaker to the disposal if yours is hardwired.

Step 2

Find the flywheel screw on the center bottom of the garbage disposal. Insert the offset wrench into the flywheel screw. Most disposers come with an offset wrench, which is a Allen-head wrench on a bent handle. If you do not have the offset wrench, use an appropriate-size Allen wrench.

Step 3

Turn the screw left to right with the wrench until you can turn it one complete revolution. Reach inside the drain with a pair of tongs and remove the obstruction.

Step 4

Insert a broom handle into the drain between the impeller blades if you cannot turn the flywheel with the wrench. Move the impeller blades left to right and dislodge the obstruction.

Step 5

Remove the obstruction with a pair of tongs. Reconnect the electricity to the unit. Run cold water down the drain, and turn on the garbage disposal to remove any residual organic matter.