How Much Does Garbage Disposal Repair Cost?

Whether a garbage disposal is clogged with food or making strange noises, the repair costs for a malfunctioning unit ranges from $70 to $400, or about $250 on average.
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Garbage Disposal Repair Cost


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  • The typical cost range to repair a garbage disposal runs from $70 to $400, with a national average cost of $250.
  • Some of the main factors affecting the cost of garbage disposal repair include the type of repair, the age of the home, the plumber’s experience level, the cost of labor, and the garbage disposal brand.
  • Homeowners may need garbage disposal repair if they notice unusual noises, pooling water, frequent clogs, slow draining, or the unit’s inability to grind or to turn on.
  • A homeowner with plenty of DIY experience may be able to repair a garbage disposal themselves; however, DIYers are more prone to mistakes than professionals, who can identify and fix the problem quickly and efficiently.
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A garbage disposal is a common kitchen appliance that is used to help break down a variety of soft food items, like cooked meat scraps, nonfibrous fruits and vegetables, citrus rinds, and small bones. However, trying to feed hard or fibrous items into the disposal, like fruit pits, grease, large bones, eggshells, banana peels, or nuts, can lead to the garbage disposal not working properly—or at all.

There are several problems that can occur as a result of improper use, regular wear, or faulty operation, such as the garbage disposal leaking or the garbage disposal not turning on. According to HomeAdvisor, the cost to repair a garbage disposal can range from just $70 for small fixes such as a clogged garbage disposal repair to as much as $400 for more serious problems, like for cracked garbage disposal repair, though repair will typically cost about $250 on average. Homeowners can discover what factors can affect the garbage disposal repair cost to ensure there is enough room in their budget for this project.

Factors in Calculating Garbage Disposal Repair Cost

Garbage Disposal Repair Cost

Garbage disposal repair costs can vary depending on several factors, including the type of repair, the age of the home, the experience level of the plumber, local labor rates, and the appliance brand. Before homeowners hire a repair professional, it’s a good idea to become more familiar with these cost factors and the ways they can impact the overall price of the garbage disposal repair.

Repair Type

The first factor for homeowners to consider when putting together a budget for this project is the type of garbage disposal repair being performed. This can generally be attributed to the area or specific part of the unit that needs to be fixed or replaced. Depending on the cause of the issue, there may be a need to replace garbage disposal components to resolve the problem, such as switching out the stopper, splash guard, seal, or blades.

Common problem areas on a garbage disposal include the seal, gasket, impeller, and motor, though the knockout plug, flange, flywheel, and the garbage disposal reset button can also cause issues. DIYers with garbage disposal installation and repair experience can generally troubleshoot the problem to assess what needs to be done to fix the appliance. However, it’s best to call a plumber or repair professional for those without the knowledge and experience to determine the repair type.

Repair TypeAverage Cost (Materials and Labor)
Blade replacement$65 to $125
Flange replacement$75 to $125
Flywheel replacement$100 to $200
Gasket replacement$50 to $100
Impeller repair$65 to $100
Knockout plug replacement$65 to $125
Motor repair$75 to $150
Motor replacement$175 to $400
Reset button replacement$65 to $140
Seal repair$50 to $100
Seal replacement$65 to $125
Splash guard replacement$55 to $70
Stopper replacement$10 to $40

Home Age

It may seem odd at first consideration, but the age of the home can affect the overall cost of the garbage disposal repair. This is because as a home gets older, there is a higher chance that a home renovation project completed by a past homeowner or the current one has led the wires or plumbing to become buried in a difficult-to-reach location, such as behind the walls.

The harder it is to access the garbage disposal unit, the wiring, and all necessary plumbing, the higher the labor cost for the repair because the repair professionals will need to take more time just to gain access to the appliance. If the current garbage disposal setup at the home seems difficult to access, DIYers can save some money on this repair by taking it upon themselves to open up the area, allowing the repair professionals ample space for inspecting, repairing, or installing garbage disposal replacement parts.

Plumber Experience Level

The cost of the garbage disposal repair can fluctuate based on the experience level of the plumber who handles the fix. This is because professional plumbers must work for a specific period of time as an apprentice before being able to take a test to become a journeyman plumber. After they have attained this level, they can aim to become a master plumber.

Apprentice plumbers are the most affordable at an average hourly rate of $16 to $25. Homeowners can expect to pay about $25 to $40 per hour for a journeyman plumber, while a master plumber may charge anywhere from $25 to $75 per hour. Speaking to the company can help homeowners determine the experience level of the plumber and the expected rate for the repair services.

Plumber Experience LevelLabor Cost per Hour
Apprentice$16 to $25
Journeyman$25 up $40
Master$25 to $75


The labor rate is essentially the hourly rate that the repair professional will charge for the repair services, though this rate can vary depending on the local supply and demand for this work. Additionally, homeowners can expect a different hourly labor rate depending on the type of repair professional that is required to fix the appliance.

So who fixes garbage disposals, and how much do they charge? Plumbers will generally charge between $16 and $75 per hour based on their experience level, while local electricians will typically charge about $50 to $100 per hour. There are also situations that require both a plumber and an electrician to repair or replace garbage disposal components, leading to an increased cost for this work. Homeowners can also hire one of the best handyman services to fix or replace their broken garbage disposal.

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Garbage Disposal Brand

The specific brand of garbage disposal can also contribute to differences in repair costs. This is due to the cost to purchase and ship replacement parts, as well as the individual price differences between brands. Lower-cost brands, such as GE and Whirlpool, are the least expensive garbage disposals to repair, ranging from about $55 to $140 on average.

KitchenAid is another relatively inexpensive brand to repair, at $65 to $150. Moen and Waste King are mid-range brands with an average repair cost of $75 to $170. However, if the home has an InSinkErator garbage disposal, then the homeowner can expect a premium repair cost that can range from $80 to $180.

Garbage Disposal BrandAverage Repair Cost (Materials and Labor)
GE$55 to $140
InSinkErator$80 to $180
KitchenAid$65 to $150
Moen$75 to $170
Waste King$75 to $170
Whirlpool$55 to $140
Garbage Disposal Repair Cost

Additional Costs and Considerations

After a homeowner factors in the primary cost considerations for this project, they’ll need to determine if there will be any additional costs, fees, or add-ons that may increase the overall cost. It’s also important for homeowners to take some time to decide whether a repair is worth the investment or if it’s time to consider a full garbage disposal replacement.

Repair vs. Replacement

Garbage disposals will typically last about 5 to 15 years, depending on how the unit is used and how frequently it’s used, so if the unit is nearing the end of its expected lifespan, it may be more cost-effective to invest in a replacement.

  • Garbage disposal repair is often the best choice for relatively new garbage disposals that are leaking, jammed, or clogged or that may have faulty wiring. Repairs will generally cost about $70 to $400. The repair professional can assess the problem and replace damaged or worn parts while suggesting best practices for ongoing maintenance and proper use.
  • Garbage disposal replacement is a better option for appliances that are nearing 10 years of life or that may have an expensive issue, such as a damaged motor. Replacing a garbage disposal typically costs about $250 to $400, though prices can be higher for more expensive or high-powered units.

Plumbing or Electrical Work

Garbage disposals, clothes washers, dishwashers, and other water-using appliances rely on both plumbing and electrical systems to function properly, so when there is a problem with the garbage disposal, it may not be an issue that can be fixed by one of the best plumbing services.

  • Plumbing repairs often include clearing clogs, fixing leaks, replacing garbage disposal components, cutting pipes, lengthening pipes, shortening pipes, and making plumbing connections. Homeowners can expect to pay about $16 to $75 per hour, depending on whether the plumber is an apprentice, journeyman, or master plumber.
  • Electrical repairs for a garbage disposal are usually limited to installing a new electrical outlet, putting in a GFCI outlet, repairing or upgrading wiring, or replacing certain electrical components, like the reset button. Homeowners can plan to spend about $50 to $100 per hour to have an electrician work on the garbage disposal.

Emergency Call-Out Fees

When company is coming into town and the garbage disposal starts acting up, it can cause significant stress for those living in the home and their guests. With this in mind, some people may treat a faulty garbage disposal as an emergency, prompting them to contact a repair company for service as soon as possible. When there isn’t time to wait for a scheduled appointment, this is the best way to get the situation resolved in the shortest time frame.

Most companies will charge an initial call-out fee of about $30 to $50, which is often waived when the homeowner decides to hire them for the repair. However, for after-hours or emergency services, the call-out fee can increase significantly to a range of $140 to $400. For this reason, it’s important that homeowners weigh the benefit of prompt service against the cost of the emergency call-out fees to determine if the quick service is worth the cost increase.


Another factor to consider when homeowners are looking into garbage disposal repair companies is the product warranty for the existing unit. Newer units may have active warranties that will cover the replacement of certain components or the repair of the unit, so before homeowners hire a company to fix the appliances, it’s important for them to check the existing product warranty.

Additionally, garbage disposal repair costs may be covered by a home warranty. Home warranties are essentially service contracts that help pay to repair or replace certain whole-home systems and appliances, including garbage disposals. If the homeowner has a policy with one of the best home warranty companies, such as American Home Shield or AFC Home Club, they’ll want to check and see if the repair will be covered.


It’s important for homeowners to learn how to clean garbage disposal units in order to keep the appliance in good condition for years to come. Homeowners can clean garbage disposal units, sharpen the blades, and add a pleasant smell to the drain by using ice cubes, citrus juice, vinegar, and baking soda. Alternately, homeowners can invest in specialty cleaning products that are designed specifically for cleaning and maintaining the garbage disposal.

Homeowners will want to make sure to use cold water while using the unit because hot water can increase the risk of clogs. This occurs when the hot water melts pieces of fat and oil, allowing them to slide into the drain, where they cool and solidify. Instead, cold water helps to ensure that these bits of fat remain in solid form, allowing the disposal to cut them into smaller bits that can be washed down the drain. Typically, annual garbage disposal maintenance will cost about $50 to $75.


There are various add-ons that can be included as part of garbage disposal installation cost or during the replacement or repair of a garbage disposal unit. Generally, these add-ons are intended to improve the functionality of the appliance, making it easier to use and less likely to develop issues in the future.

  • Anti-jamming units come with built-in features that help to prevent the garbage disposal from jamming. Given that this is one of the most common problems a garbage disposal can develop, this feature can save homeowners money on unnecessary repairs in the future. However, the drawback is that anti-jamming devices cannot currently be purchased separately, so the homeowner would need to purchase a new unit with these features already installed.
  • Individual baffles can be installed to help prevent splashback while muffling the sound of the disposal. Homeowners can expect to pay about $10 to $20 per baffle and about $55 to $70 to have them professionally installed.
  • Flanges are generally included with the initial installation; depending on the type of garbage disposal, however, this isn’t always the case. New flanges can be fit to the garbage disposal unit for about $75 to $125 to help secure the appliance and reduce the risk of leaks.
  • Insulation can absorb the noise the garbage disposal makes, so that the homeowner can enjoy the functionality of the appliance without as much noise pollution within the confines of the kitchen. Homeowners will just want to keep in mind that it will cost about $50 to $100 extra for insulation installation.

Garbage Disposal Repair Cost by Type of Repair 

One of the most important factors to consider when homeowners are coming up with the approximate cost for garbage disposal repairs is the type of repair that is required to resolve the problem. Common options include repairing or replacing the gasket, impeller blades, motor, or seal.

Garbage Disposal Repair TypeAverage Cost (Materials and Labor)
Gasket$50 to $100
Impellers$65 to $100
Motor$75 to $150
Seal$50 to $100


Gaskets are used in many appliances as a way of sealing spaces and preventing leaks. In a garbage disposal, gaskets are used to create an airtight seal that stops the water and other liquids from leaking out of the unit. For this reason, when the garbage disposal is leaking, the cause is often a problem with the gasket.

Gaskets can become worn over time or they may crack, causing the garbage disposal to leak. Homeowners will typically pay about $50 to $100 to have a gasket replaced by a professional, though some DIYers with prior experience working on garbage disposals may be able to take on this job to save money on the cost of labor.


The impellers are the blades of the garbage disposal unit. Typically, garbage disposals have two relatively blunt blades that rapidly spin at high speeds in order to break soft food waste into smaller chunks. Repairing impeller blades generally costs about $65 to $100, depending on the type of damage.

If the blades simply need to be cleaned, sharpened, or tightened, then the cost of the repair is relatively inexpensive. However, if the blades bend, break, or become warped, then they may need to be replaced, which is a task that can range from $65 to $125. Homeowners will want to speak to the repair professional to determine if they will be able to fix the existing impeller blades or if the blades will need to be replaced.

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The motor is one of the most important parts of the garbage disposal unit, so when it starts to act up, it can be costly to repair or replace. Motor repairs for a garbage disposal unit range from about $75 to $150, depending on the exact cause of the problem as well as the amount of time it will take to resolve the issue.

For more serious problems, the repair professional may suggest replacing the motor entirely. This repair project will cost a significant amount more than a simple fix to an existing motor, so homeowners will want to be prepared to spend between $175 and $400 to replace the garbage disposal motor.


A garbage disposal seal is intended to prevent the appliance from leaking while in use. This is accomplished by trapping the water inside the unit with an airtight seal. However, seals can begin to crack, crumble, or simply wear down over time. When this occurs, the garbage disposal will likely start to leak, leading to mold growth, rot, and water damage if the situation is not rectified.

Minor issues with the seal may be able to be patched with plumber’s putty or a similar product, though this isn’t the case for significant leaks. Homeowners will want to plan on spending about $50 to $100 to have a professional plumber assess and repair the garbage disposal seal. If any damage has occurred due to the leak, the homeowner may need to hire a contractor who specializes in water damage restoration to fix the surrounding area.

Do I need garbage disposal repair?

Before homeowners call in a repair professional, it’s worth inspecting and assessing the current condition of the garbage disposal to determine if the unit requires repair. In some cases, the issue can be fixed with the push of a button, so it’s a good idea for the homeowner to troubleshoot the problem and try simple DIY solutions. However, if the garbage disposal shows any of the following symptoms, the homeowner is advised to speak to a repair professional.

Unusual Noises

A common sign that there is a problem with the garbage disposal is that it starts making unfamiliar noises. All garbage disposals make a significant amount of noise when they are operating, and the specific noise can change depending on what is being fed into the disposal. However, if the system starts humming or the homeowner notices a clinking sound, like metal hitting against metal, then it can be an indication that there is a problem.

A humming garbage disposal indicates that there may be an issue with the motor or the impeller blades, though it can also point to a jam in the system. Alternately, if the garbage disposal makes clinking sounds when it is in use, it’s likely that the impeller blades are loose and will need to be tightened for proper operation.

Pooling Water

A garbage disposal is part of the plumbing system, so if the homeowner notices that water or other liquids seem to be pooling around the base of the unit, then this is likely due to an active leak. Garbage disposal leaks can be caused by faulty gaskets, a worn seal, or even a crack in the body of the unit.

The first thing to do when discovering a pool of water from a leaking garbage disposal is to stop using the disposal and contact a plumber to assess the situation. The plumber will be able to determine if the leak is coming from the garbage disposal or another part of the plumbing system. They will also be able to provide suggestions for fixing the issue, as well as an estimated cost for the repair.

Frequent Clogs

Garbage disposals are intended to help prevent clogs by breaking up soft food waste into small pieces that are easily washed down the drain. However, not every type of food waste is suitable for dumping into the disposal or pouring into the drain. For instance, while coffee grounds can help remove unpleasant odors, they contribute to clog formation and buildup, so it’s recommended that homeowners avoid pouring coffee grounds into the drain.

Fixing a clogged garbage disposal is a common task for repair professionals, as they know how to unclog a garbage disposal without causing any damage, though it will still cost about $60 to $150. Depending on the location of the clog and the type of obstruction, the repair professional may need to take apart the unit, disassemble the drain line, or use heavy equipment to remove the blockage.

Slow Draining

In some cases, the garbage disposal drain system is partially clogged, causing water and other liquids to drain slowly. This situation can typically be resolved by a plumber, though some DIYers may have the experience to clear the clog on their own. The plumber or DIYer will need to locate where the clog is in the plumbing line, then use a drain snake or a plumbing auger to break up the clog.

However, there are some situations where the plumber may need to take apart the garbage disposal in order to access a clog inside the unit. Generally, the more time it takes to find and clear the clog, the higher the cost of the repair. Homeowners can expect to spend between $60 and $150 to have a professional fix a slow-draining garbage disposal.

Unit Not Grinding

The main function of a garbage disposal is to use two relatively blunt impeller blades to break up large pieces of soft food waste. This grinding function is essential to the performance of the appliance, so if the unit is no longer grinding, the disposal cannot perform properly. This type of issue is generally caused by a clog or jam in the garbage disposal.

The clog or jam prevents the impeller blades from cutting, grinding, or moving. If the homeowner continues to attempt to use the garbage disposal in this condition, it could cause the motor to burn out, so it’s best for the homeowner to contact a repair professional to take apart the disposal and remove the obstruction.

Unit Not Turning On

Garbage disposals require electricity to function, so if the unit is not turning on, it could be an indication that there is a problem with the switch, wiring, or the internal fuse. Homeowners will want to check the associated breaker switch to determine if it tripped during use. Sometimes, simply turning the switch back on can resolve the issue.

However, if there is a short in the wiring or a problem with the internal fuse, then the switch may trip again the next time the garbage disposal is turned on. Similarly, garbage disposals have a reset button, which is intended to reset the internal fuse. If the homeowner needs to keep pushing the reset button for the garbage disposal to work, then it’s likely that there is a short in the system that is tripping the internal fuse. Homeowners will want to contact an electrician to assess and repair the unit.

Garbage Disposal Repair Cost

Garbage Disposal Repair: DIY vs. Hiring a Professional 

Garbage disposal installation, replacement, and repair are DIY-friendly tasks for those with basic plumbing and electrical experience. Avid DIYers can save about $100 to $400 in labor costs by taking on this work as a DIY job, though this also means that the DIYer is responsible for any problems with the installation or repair. Additionally, it can be more difficult for a DIYer to find the appropriate replacement parts to fix a garbage disposal, which can lead to a longer period without a working disposal at home.

If the cost of labor isn’t too prohibitive for the repair, it may be better to have a professional assess and fix the garbage disposal. Professional plumbers and electricians are trained to handle these situations. They also have experience on a near-daily basis with installations, replacement, and repairs, making it easier for them to complete garbage disposal work within a shorter time frame. Homeowners will want to weigh the cost of hiring a professional against the time and potential stress involved in a DIY repair before deciding on the best course of action.

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How to Save Money on Garbage Disposal Repair Cost

Generally, homeowners will pay between $70 and $400 to have a repair professional fix an existing garbage disposal unit. While the cost to repair a garbage disposal isn’t too expensive when compared with other appliance repair costs, it’s still a good idea to look for ways to reduce the cost of replacement parts and repairs. Consider these options for saving money on garbage disposal repair costs.

  • Invest in a used appliance. If the entire disposal needs to be replaced, consider finding a used model that was taken out of service for reasons other than repairs.
  • Select a suitable garbage disposal size. Not every home needs the largest or most powerful garbage disposal. Save on the cost of replacement or repairs by opting for a smaller garage disposal unit.
  • Prepare the area. DIYers can save money on labor costs by taking care of any prep work ahead of time, such as clearing the immediate area of any objects or even opening up the wall to provide ample access to the unit, wiring, or plumbing.
  • Get multiple estimates. The best way to ensure that the repair cost is fair is to get estimates from at least three reputable companies. A comparison of estimates will give the homeowner the opportunity to select the best rate.

Questions to Ask About Garbage Disposal Repair

When something goes wrong with one of the appliances at home, some DIYers may have the knowledge and experience to fix the issue, but other homeowners need to trust the repair to a professional. However, it can be difficult for an inexperienced homeowner to ensure the quality of the job without knowing more about the company, the repair professional, and the garbage disposal repair process. It’s recommended for homeowners to ask the plumber, electrician, or customer service staff several key questions to help fill in any gaps in the information.

  • Are you licensed, bonded, and insured?
  • Are all workers also licensed, bonded, and insured?
  • How many garbage disposals have you fixed?
  • What type of garbage disposal are you the most familiar with?
  • What garbage disposal brands do you typically work with?
  • Can you give me a written estimate for the repair?
  • Does this price include all materials, labor, and cleanup fees?
  • What’s your minimum service and diagnostic fee?
  • How is payment handled?
  • Should I get a bigger garbage disposal unit instead of repairing this one?
  • Do you offer any warranties or guarantees on the work?
  • Do you work with electrician subcontractors to upgrade my wiring?
  • Can I contact past customers for references?
  • What caused these damages, and how can I prevent them in the future?
  • What are your hours of operation?
  • Do you know all the local building code requirements for disposals?
  • If you have to order a new part, how long will it take to come in?


Having more information regarding the garbage disposal and the appliance repair process can help the homeowner make an informed decision when it comes time to choose between repairing or replacing the garbage disposal unit. Considering the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about garbage disposal repairs can help homeowners better understand this project and its associated costs.

Q. What is the lifespan of a garbage disposal?

The exact lifespan of a garbage disposal can vary depending on the frequency of use and the level of care taken by the homeowner to avoid misusing the appliance. On average, homeowners can expect a garbage disposal to last between 5 and 15 years.

Q. How long does it take to fix a garbage disposal?

Generally, it will take about 1 to 2 hours to fix a garbage disposal. However, if there is a serious problem, like a burned-out motor, broken impeller blades, or an issue with the wiring between the disposal and the main breaker box, then the repair may take longer to complete.

Q. What causes a garbage disposal to stop working?

There are many factors that can cause even the best garbage disposals to stop working. For instance, if the homeowner or other users regularly feed fibrous peels, large bones, fat, or other inappropriate food waste into the disposal, it can damage the impeller blades, clog the drain, or jam the unit. Similarly, issues with the wiring or a short in the garbage disposal itself can prevent it from turning on or working continuously.

Q. Can you replace a garbage disposal yourself?

Replacing a garbage disposal is a complicated task that is best left to an installation professional if you do not have a lot of skill, knowledge, or experience with these appliances. However, avid DIYers with plumbing and electrical experience may be able to replace the garbage disposal on their own or with limited aid.

Sources: HomeAdvisor, Angi, Fixr, HomeGuide