Garbage disposals make life, and kitchen clean-up, a whole lot easier. Fortunately, installing a disposal is pretty easy too, especially when your sink is solid enough to anchor it and your kitchen's wiring and plumbing are disposal-ready. When in doubt, it's wise to check with a licensed plumber or other authorized individual if you want to install a garbage disposal as to the exact cost to replace of install it. Here is some general information:
I- Options: Continuous vs. Batch Feed
Two types of garbage disposals are available -- continuous feed and batch feed. Both send waste through your sewer or septic system, but each feeds waste in a different way. Consider the following when deciding which disposal will work best for you.
1- Continuous Feed ($170 average cost)
2- Batch Feed Garbage Disposals ($220 average cost)
II- Cost of Initial Installation
Garbage disposals can range from $70 on the low end to $380 on the high end -- and generally speaking, you get what you pay for. A less expensive unit is likely to produce more noise, require more water, and clog more easily than a higher-end model. Likewise, a more expensive unit will be faster, quieter and less likely to malfunction than a lower end model -- and it will be lighter-weight and offer greater capacity as well. The average cost of a garbage disposal installation with a one-year manufacturer’s warranty is $185. The average amount of time taken to install a garbage disposal, including cleanup, is three hours. The hourly cost for labor will range from $20 to $40 -- $28 on average.
III- Cost of Wiring
In the event that you do not have a grounded outlet to power the garbage disposal, you will need to install one. Adding a grounded outlet may cost as little as $5 when existing electrical wiring is placed a short distance away, plus an additional $75 for the electrician's labor. If a new grounded outlet needs to be added and electrical wiring does not yet exist, it will likely cost around $90, depending on labor and parts. If your project requires the addition of a new switch and wire, plan to spend an average of $5 to $10 on materials, plus about 30 minutes of labor at an average cost of $75 an hour.
IV- Replacement Disposals
Most garbage disposals are made with stainless steel blades, which prevent corrosion and prolong the life of the blade. A garbage disposal should be replaced when its blades begin to dull. The cost of replacing a garbage disposal is comparable to that of installing a new one -- and wiring should already be in place.
Should your disposal suddenly cease to work, check its overload protection. A red button on the bottom of the disposal trips when the disposal becomes jammed or overloaded to prevent damage and motor burnout. Unplug the disposal, push the button and remove the jam. Some high-end models can sense a jam and will automatically reverse the direction of the blades.