Garbage disposal systems are one of the most convenient additions you can make to any kitchen, letting you grind up and wash away food scraps and left-overs without needing to pick them out of the sink by hand. Not only do they save plenty of time, but almost every model will dispose of the food in a safe, environmentally-friendly way, and can usually be turned on at the press of a button.
That does not mean that they are all the same, though – there are hundreds of garbage disposal models on the market, and you can only install one on a standard kitchen sink, so you need to choose carefully. It may not seem like it on paper, but even the smallest difference can completely change how you will end up using your garbage disposal unit once it’s installed.
Below are ten of the best garbage disposal systems we could find, as well as some reasons why they are so good and what you can expect to use them for.
Related: Compost Bin Review.
View the Best Garbage Disposal, Below.
- Waste King L-8000 Garbage Disposal
- InSinkErator Garbage Disposal
- Waste King L-1001 Garbage disposal
- InSinkErator Evolution Septic Assist Disposal
- Waste King Legend Series L-2600 Garbage disposal
- InSinkErator Evolution Compact Disposal
- Insinkerator Badger 5 Garbage Disposal
- Waste King L-3200 Disposal
- Moen GXS75C GX Series Garbage Disposal
- KitchenAid Continuous Feed Garbage Disposal
1. Waste King L-8000 Garbage Disposal
The L-8000 garbage disposal unit is meant to be simple and powerful, dealing with everyday food waste in a quick and efficient manner that doesn't make too much noise or take up too much space.
Its switch-based activation means that it will run until you turn it off again, making it an excellent tool for dealing with large amounts of food scraps and other waste that an automatic system might not be able to keep up with.
On top of that, the energy-efficient design and simple installation mean that you don’t need to be a plumbing and DIY expert to set it up, and it is easy to move it to another sink if have more than one in your kitchen. Like many of Waste King’s models, it’s fully compatible with home septic tanks, meaning that you don’t have to worry about hooking it up directly to the sewer.
This garbage disposal unit is an excellent choice for first-time buyers, mixing a simple design with a powerful motor for excellent results.Check Price on Amazon ➞
2. InSinkErator Garbage Disposal
This small garbage disposal model is extremely quiet, grinding up all kinds of food waste without creating any obnoxiously-loud noises that drown out the world around you.
Its durable parts and built-in jam assist means that you won't need to check it for damage constantly, and the three different stages of grinding it provides can take down even the strongest scraps of food.
The jam-sensor circuit on this garbage disposal unit helps push through large loads of waste with ease, increasing the torque of the grinders by 500% to break down anything that’s jamming it up – even sticky waste will struggle to slow it down, and there are very few types of food you won’t be able to dispose of normally.
The powerful, quiet design of this garbage disposal unit makes it an excellent choice for family homes, especially ones where plenty of food scraps are left over after each meal.Check Price on Amazon ➞
3. Waste King L-1001 Garbage disposal
The L-1001 is a high-speed, easy-to-use garbage disposal unit that keeps many of Waste King’s trademark features and traits, being extremely easy to both install and operate without needing to spend hours learning any intricate instructions.
It’s lightweight and compact design prevents it from taking up an entire cupboard under the sink, and the wall switch that activates it stays out of your way while you’re trying to do other things.
The interior chamber of this garbage disposal unit is corrosion-proof and can hold quite a heavy load of food at once, so it is perfectly safe to dump a lot in there at once and let it all grind up in a single flick of the switch.
This unit is surprisingly versatile, and can deal with a lot of food waste at once, making it ideal for short-notice cleaning and disposal situations.Check Price on Amazon ➞
4. InSinkErator Evolution Septic Assist Disposal
This garbage disposal unit offers an excellent balance of power and noise level, staying quiet while grinding up any food waste you dump into it. Its built-in bio-charge technology uses natural micro-organisms to break down any food that it can’t grind up normally, letting it dissolve tougher clumps and scraps without having to rely on brute force.
In terms of power, the ¾ horsepower motor and two-stage grinding process mean that it’s easy to deal with all kinds of leftovers and waste without needing to unjam or manually restart it every so often.
The high-quality parts and solid quick lock mount of this garbage disposal unit keep it secure and safe during long periods of use, and the SoundSeal technology helps keep the noise contained rather than making it rattle around the sink.
The low noise level of this disposal unit's motor makes it an excellent choice for smaller households or places where too much noise can annoy neighbors.Check Price on Amazon ➞
5. Waste King Legend Series L-2600 Garbage disposal
The L-2600 garbage disposal unit is designed to jam as little as possible, being strong enough to take on almost all kinds of food waste without slowing down. Even if it jams, the manual reset button allows you to easily unjam it without causing any lasting damage to its components, so you won’t need to replace parts every time it suddenly stops grinding.
The built-in splash guard of this garbage disposal unit makes it much easier to clean the disposal system if it’s getting clogged up, and it’s completely compatible with most common septic tanks and systems since it doesn’t require any extra components or special tools to set up. It uses standard wall-mounted switches, meaning that you won’t need to keep the electrical components right next to your sink.
This disposal unit is excellent for dealing with a wide range of different food waste types, and can break down almost anything you throw into it.Check Price on Amazon ➞
6. InSinkErator Evolution Compact Disposal
This compact waste disposal unit is incredibly efficient, using up very little space and packing a lot of power into a small frame for maximum disposal rate at all times. It is also surprisingly quiet despite having a two-stage grinding setup, meaning that it won't get annoying to everybody else in the house while you're using it to clean up.
At ¾ horsepower, it's deceptively strong and can grind down almost any type of food waste or scraps without jamming or showing any signs of direct damage to its interior workings. It's easy to install, easy to use and can be cleaned incredibly quickly, making it useful in nearly any situation.
The small size of this garbage disposal model makes it really useful for crowded or minimalist kitchens, especially ones where you need to store a lot of things underneath the sink.Check Price on Amazon ➞
7. Insinkerator Badger 5 Garbage Disposal
This ½ garbage disposal unit is able to take on a wide range of different waste types and consistencies, using its compact design and simple construction to work perfectly in almost any kitchen, no matter what kind of sink it’s installed to.
The quick-lock installation system means that you can easily remove and replace it if it needs to be cleaned, and the internal components are all carefully designed to be protected from damage. Not only that, but the model’s power cord is built straight into its body, meaning that you don’t need to fiddle with getting it properly connected.
This small garbage disposal unit is excellent for smaller under-sink cupboards, and it's durable, long-lasting design means that it doesn't need to be replaced often.Check Price on Amazon ➞
8. Waste King L-3200 Disposal
The L-3200 is a small, lightweight garbage disposal tool that can be easily mounted onto nearly any sink, allowing it to start grinding up food waste almost instantly with no extra skills or components required.
Its 32-inch power cord allows you to connect it to a plug safely out of the way of any water-filled sinks, and the high-strength grinding chamber is able to endure a lot of punishment without taking any permanent damage. Like many of Waste King’s models, this garbage disposal unit also has a manual reset button that helps deal with jams and overloads without putting you at risk.
The small size and low weight of this garbage disposal unit hide its excellent power and versatility, making it great for a huge range of different homes.Check Price on Amazon ➞
9. Moen GXS75C GX Series Garbage Disposal
This Moen garbage disposal unit is incredibly fast and quiet, using a Soundshield design and 2,700 RPM motor quickly grind up food scraps without getting in the way of your other activities or conversations.
Its small size frees up more space beneath your sink to store other items, and the three-bolt-based mounting system keeps it sturdy no matter how you’ve installed it.
Since this garbage disposal model operates on a continuous feed, this unit can grind up plenty of food without having to constantly stop and start, reducing the chance of it jamming unexpectedly.
This garbage disposal unit can work well in almost any kitchen, but it excels at dealing with large amounts of food waste at once.Check Price on Amazon ➞
10. KitchenAid Continuous Feed Garbage Disposal
This powerful garbage disposal unit runs at ¾ HP at a speed of 1725 RPM, giving it plenty of grinding strength when it comes to tougher scraps of food. The SoundSeal technology used in its design helps keep it quiet and unobtrusive while you’re busy in the kitchen, and its continuous feed capabilities mean that it won’t turn itself off while you’re trying to put more waste into it.
The MultiGrind system gives it two different grinding stages, allowing this garbage disposal unit to wear down durable waste more easily without clogging up its pipes or jamming up the grinding area, making it much more reliable as a result.
This garbage disposal unit is excellent for dealing with a small, compact kitchen that needs as much free storage space as possible without sacrificing any of its equipment or appliances.Check Price on Amazon ➞
Garbage Disposal Buyer’s Guide
Choosing a garbage disposal unit can be difficult if you’re new to them in general, but there are certain qualities that you should generally always look for, no matter how strange they might seem at first.
The noise level of your grinder will have a significant impact on how you use it, especially if you’re using it in a family home or shared living space. Grinders can often be loud enough to interrupt conversations in other rooms, and some might even drown out music or wake people up if they’re sleeping.
A quiet grinder won’t necessarily be lower-powered since it’s often down to the design of the unit itself and not the motor or grinders used in inside it. There’s also rarely any problems with using a louder unit, so it really comes down to whether or not you consider it a necessary feature to look for – in some cases, a quieter model might cost slightly more, but this isn’t a hard rule.
Power and Cable Types
Some grinders use built-in cables exclusively, while others can be hard-wired into an existing setup or given a removable cable instead. This doesn’t make a difference to most people, but it can still be a problem if you have to fight for limited plug sockets and cables, especially if that specific grinder uses a very obscure type of cable that you can’t often find in person.
This can also affect how much you’re able to move it around – removable cables offer the most flexibility, whereas hardwiring it into your house essentially forces it to stay connected to that spot unless it’s physically disconnected again.
There are two common types of garbage disposal unit – continuous-feed and batch-feed. A continuous unit will keep running until you turn it off again, allowing you to constantly feed more waste into it without needing to worry about stopping automatically, whereas a batch-feed model needs to be loaded up before it’s activated.
Both can work equally well, but it can still make a difference in how you use it – batch-feed models take longer to complete a large cleaning job, but are much less likely to jam and are far safer to use around children, whereas continuous-feed models sacrifice a small amount of safety and reliability for a much simpler, more efficient design.
How do I Clean a Garbage Disposal?
Cleaning a garbage disposal unit is relatively simple, and can often be done without having to remove it or take off any of its components. Most people recommend pouring some baking soda and vinegar into its pipes to clear out any leftover dirt and food debris, then running hot water through it to wash the entire system clean. However, there are a few less common methods that can work, such as pouring ice and salt into the disposal and letting it grind them up.
For smaller cleaning jobs, you can usually get away with simply running some water through it while the grinder’s running, since this will clean most of the loose debris away and help get rid of anything that’s started to build up inside it, as well as giving each part of the grinder a better clean.
How do I Replace my Garbage Disposal?
Replacing your garbage disposal unit with a new model isn’t as hard as it might sound, but you need to make sure you do it in a safe way. Make sure you’ve turned off the power to it, whether that’s by unplugging it, turning it off at a circuit breaker or turning it off with a built-in switch, since letting it reactivate while you’re trying to remove it can be dangerous. You should also stop the water flow in any way you can, which can usually be done with a simple sink plug.
If you’re replacing your existing model with a similar one, simply take it off and screw or connect the new garbage disposal unit in – however, if they’re vastly different sizes, you might have to re-install them from scratch without any of the original’s pipes or mounting equipment.
Every brand of disposal unit is different, so they’ll all function and connect in different ways – make sure you read the instructions and figure out any differences between the two models, since the new one may need extra components or different cables compared to the model you use to use.
How do I unclog a Garbage Disposal Unit?
Unclogging your disposal unit can be a dangerous job if you don’t do it properly, especially since you can damage both the unit and yourself if you aren’t careful. If the initial safety features don’t work (like manual resets and automatic jam clearing systems), you’ll probably have to do it yourself.
To start with, make sure your unit is turned off properly, then try shining a light into it to identify the problem. In some cases, it might be a “soft” blockage due to being fed too many food scraps at once, but it can also be a “hard” blockage involving something being physically wedged between the grinders.
In the former’s case, you might be able to break it down with hot water and some gentle prodding. The latter might be removable with a pair of pliers, but if not, you’ll likely need to disassemble your unit to remove it. Either way, you should aim to push the blockage out without using your hands if possible, especially if the grinder could turn back on.
Avoid using drain cleaners – they can cause damage to the inside of your disposal system, and might result in the blades wearing down over time.
Did you know?
Some garbage disposal units have slots at the bottom that allow you to unjam the grinder blades with an Allen wrench or hex key.