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How Much Does Garbage Disposal Installation Cost?

There is this sorted convenience with installing a garbage disposal, and most homeowners agree that, in the end, installation of these luxuries can be quite helpful in the kitchen. When you decide to install a garbage disposal, knowing more about the costs and benefits will help you waft away all those troubled clouds over your head.  


Homeowners are, at times, concerned of the stigma based on how garbage disposals can be ecologically damaging. However, depending on the kind of installation you decide to forgo, it might actually be less damaging to use a garbage disposal septic rather than throwing out all your trash and sending it to a landfill. Pragmatically, garbage disposals actually help with the management of 31 million tons of solid waste per year.


According to a national survey, about half of the whole country actually has a garbage disposal already installed. Funny thing about that statistic is that there is an estimate that says sixty percent of those homeowners were clueless about having a disposal installed. Food waste basically makes up for about 21.6 percent of the nation’s landfills.


Modern-day disposals actually have that potential to grind up unexpected solids. Throughout the process, all that material ends up getting sent from your pipes to wastewater treatment facilities, where they’re churned into slurry materials. The process goes as follows: screening, pumping, aerating, removing sludge and scum, and killing bacteria.


By understanding how the wastewater treatment facilities work, you’ll have a more detailed outlook into why disposal systems might be better for the environment. If you look into garbage disposal installation costs, they might astound you into a closer scope. There are options for homeowners who wish to cut costs and install the system themselves but as a reminder, be cautious of how hazardous the jobs involved can be.



Average Cost To Install Garbage Disposal  

Believe it or not, there are many different kinds of garbage disposal units out there. And depending on which one you decide to buy, your costs may very well be affected.


National Average Range $134-$300
Average Range $120-$400
Low-End Range $75-$200
High-End Range $175-$1500


Below are the different parts you’ll probably need to know more about before you assemble your garbage disposal and their costs. However, garbage disposals are actually made from only two materials: aluminum or stainless steel. You’ll also need to think about the kind of motor you’ll likely require for the process of choosing what kind of garbage disposal you’ll need. Keep in mind that your feed is just as important.


Image By Chris Winters From Flickr

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Cost Factor of Motor Size

The motors in garbage disposals measure how much horsepower the system utilizes. The more HP your garbage disposal has, the more ferocious in grinding power it will have. There are four standards to keep in mind with the horsepower in motors: ⅓, ½, ¾, and the 1.

The first two motors, the ⅓ and the ½ motors are for houses and apartments, while the ¾ and the 1 motors are typically meant for restaurants. In your search for a garbage disposal installation, you’ll find an induction motor and a permanent magnet motor. 


Horsepower Amount of People Cost Range Amount of Usage
1-2 $75-$150 Light Usage
½ 1-4 $75-$200 Medium Usage
¾ 3-6 $100-$250 Medium Usage
1 5-8 $200-$500 Heavy Usage
2 8 or more $300-$1100 Heavy Usage


Depending on how many people live in your home, or your family size, the amount of usage will affect your cost. Although there is a 2 HP motor, its function is really for households or most likely businesses with a large number of people in mind. Mostly restaurants utilize this much horsepower because on average, the whole of the restaurant industry within the country cycles through about 170 million guests.


Imagine 170 million people’s worth of excess foods being sent to landfills when restaurateurs decide to throw away leftovers. It’s a pretty disgusting process, but unfortunately, it’s a necessary burden for national eateries to keep everything up to a healthy standard.  


Image Contributed By MaxPixel


Induction Motor

Although the induction motor is a high-speed electrical motor, it takes a longer time to its maximum RPM compared to a permanent magnet motor. Rhetorically speaking, the permanent magnet motor may seem like a better alternative, however, many induction motors have models that get the job done.


Permanent Magnet Motor

This kind of motor uses permanent magnets to spin at its maximum momentum from the second you turn it on. The larger your motor is, the costlier the price will be. Considering how often you decide to use your garbage disposal is how quickly you can determine it will last. The life expectancy of garbage disposal units and the costs associated with them should be balanced with your own accommodations.



The cheaper option out of the two, the aluminum models are more vulnerable substitutes that corrode and leak often. The average range you can purchase the aluminum model is $75 to $300. Its value is its selling point but it also has the avenues for units that are both a batch or continuous feed.


Stainless Steel

In consideration to both metals, stainless steel is a more renowned material when it comes to lasting against time and usage. It has absolutely zero risk of corroding or leaking. And it is basically used for large households. For this reason, however, you’ll find that the average range you can purchase the stainless steel model is $400 to $1100.


Feed Type Cost

There are two feed types to consider when installing your garbage disposal. There is the batch feed model and the continuous feed model. Both models have specific machinations to determine which model is meant for your home and which one isn’t.


The Batch Feed

Every homeowner who has a garbage disposal installed in their homes will tell you that the continuous feed is the better option but the batch feed has its own advantages that you may favor. The batch feed is actually designed for safety, it only activates when the stopper is correctly placed. For homes that have children or elderly relatives, this feed works best for them, this way they won’t injure themselves.


It’s also less noisy, saves water and power, and easy to install. This is actually a feed easily installed by yourself. However, the defects of buying and installing a batch feed is how expensive the models can be, they also take up more time and if the stopper is missing or broken, the disposer will not work. The average cost range of the batch feed is around $75 to $300.


The Continuous Feed

It is a feed that most homeowners opt to purchase. Weighing out the benefits, the continuous feed is more influential in terms of selling points. It’s cost is affordable, it has faster grinding, it’s flexible in multi-tasking, it’s easy to clean and maintain, and it’s certain in its availability. 


Even with its popularity, however, it does have its deficiencies. It’s not as safe to use because while it runs efficiently, it keeps the drain open at all times. It also doesn’t save power over value, excessive usage of water, and waste can spit out often. The average cost range of the continuous feed is estimated at about $75 to $1100. There are selections for continuous feeds that equate in price along the lines as the batch feed, so a continuous feed may be something you’d like to choose.


Disposal Mount Cost

The mount in your garbage disposal is on the bottom side of your sink, by looking at your previous installation, you can see that there is a flange and a mounting ring on the adjacent side. Although a mounting ring is included with your variety of garbage disposals, over time, they’ll wear out and will need to be replaced when they are overworn. 


The average cost range for the ring will be about $15 to $25 and the average cost range for a new flange will typically be about $75 to $125.


DIY Process of Installation

Before you begin installing a garbage disposal on your own, you need to disconnect the power from the circuit breaker, that way you won’t electrocute yourself and the risk of injury is lessened. Now after turning the power off, you can safely connect your cord onto an outlet. If your garbage disposal does not have a cord, then it might have wires. In most cases, those wires will have matching colors.


Now you need to see if you can install the drain flange. New disposals will most likely suggest you to buy a new flange, so first, make sure you have a new flange. Then, you’ll need to roll up a rope of plumber’s putty and press it onto the underside of the flange. From above, insert it into the drain hole and press down evenly. From underneath, you’ll use either a backup ring, the fiber or rubber gasket to the flange, and needless to say, but use the mounting ring after. You need to snap the backup ring in place.


Tighten the mounting screws onto your mounting ring and tighten until the gasket creates a water-tight seal. Once that’s all finished, get your actual disposal and attach it to the mounting ring, ensuring that the outlet is facing the drain pipe connection. Spin the lower ring clockwise until the disposal is completely balanced and supported. 


Since not every disposal is the same size, you need to see how far your discharge tube can go. Either use a hacksaw or tubing cutter to cut the pipe to length, then attach the “P-trap” and the dishwasher discharge tube to the inlet.


Cost to Rearrange Pipes and Drains

Now, you’re probably thinking, “installing a garbage disposal is easy” or that “I could do it myself”, and although you probably can install a disposal yourself, you run the risk of making a complete mess in your kitchen. 


If you’ve already installed a disposal before yourself, that’s great, you’ll be saving a lot of money. But without proper experience or any handy experience under your belt, you might have water and food waste running down your floors. Say you made a mistake with the installation, now you’ll probably have to hire a professional to do the job you thought you could do yourself and possibly replace the flooring because of the damages caused.


Image By Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay


Labor costs will be estimated at a range of $90 to $250. The professional or professionals you’ll probably need to hire will in all likelihood be either a plumber or a plumber and an electrician. In most cases, you’ll have to hire an electrician if you need new wiring or if your wiring isn’t installed where you want the disposal to go. In every scenario, however, your installation will require a plumber or a handyman with experience of disposal installations. 


If there is an urgency to install a new electrical outlet because you do not have a grounded one, then it may cost as minimally as $5, however the additional labor costs will add up to about $75. If you need all-new electrical wiring, you’ll most likely need to calculate the addition of $90 into your budget.


Repair Costs

Most skillful plumbers or specialists will need at least an hour to complete the installation job. The labor portion of your budget should account for about $20 to $200. You’re probably wondering why that is. If the labor costs to install a disposal is about $90, why is repairing one as low as $20?


If you look at the skills of each professional level, there is an estimate calculated for professionals who have different experience in the field. An apprentice will charge you about $16 to $25, a journeyman will charge you about $25 to $40, and a master will charge you about $25 to $75. The reasons as to why you should replace your disposal or repair it are written above and the costs vary depending on the severity of the damage done.


A leak might be mild or it could be intense, it will cost you about $150 to $700, so it’s best to see if you need a replacement instead. It might actually be cheaper for you if you just bought a whole new unit instead. A clog in your disposal may just need you to clear whatever is clogging your sink or your drain. But if the pipes or the whole of your plumbing is clogged then it will cost you about $60 to $200. A jam may not cost you anything because a simple process to clean the disposal is done with either everyday cleaning supplies or just things lying in your closet. It may set you back about $75 to $150.


The damage to your disposal might be something very minor, calling a repairman and asking what your troubles are done without any effort. It’s as simple as pressing the numbers and just inquiring about what the issue could be and by figuring that out, you might actually be able to find out the solution and commit to it yourself.


If you’re dealing with full clogs, it’s still a very manageable process for you to handle. Always unplug your unit before you do anything else. This is something that most of your repair technicians and specialists will advise you. Once you do that, you can remove all the excess from under the sink and pat down towels or some kind of absorbent material and place it on the floor.


You’ll have to find the source of the issue and in most cases, it’ll be buildup from grease but once you do so, you have to check for the blockage by disconnecting the pipe below. Investigate a little further and find out what the model number of your disposal is, as you do so, find a wrench and turn the grinding axle, freeing the blades. Finally, check if the severity of the blockage requires a replacement or repair. 


Wastewater Treatment

Now let’s discuss the process of how environmentally friendly the garbage disposal system can be. What happens when you put your food or waste down the drain and turn on your disposal? As the blades grind up all that trash, all of it goes through your pipes and gets sent to the nearest wastewater treatment plant. Once that occurs, the first part of the process becomes screening.


Image By Piqsels


Screening is checking if there’s unwanted materials like wood, rocks, or, believe it or not, dead animals. Unless the unwanted materials are removed from the pipes leading to the plant, it will cause numerous problems to not only the equipment but also to the environment.


Pumping involves a gravitational factor of forcing your excess waste to the treatment plant itself. The plants are often located and built low ground, which means there’s a force of gravity that pushes and sends your and other homeowner’s waste down altogether. Then it is sent to aerate, where the sewage is shaken and exposed to air. The dissolution of chemicals and gases can be worse if released into the nearest river, which the process will end up doing. So, aeration will rejuvenate the oxygen used up for decaying objects.


After it is aerated in a separate tank, it is sent to a sedimentation tank, this is where the organic parts of the materials sent are settled. There are also larger tanks called digesters that “digests” the larger materials that are being sent. Then the process removes the “scum”, which is most often the grease, oils, plastics, and soap that people drain out through their sinks or toilets. There are some cities that filter all that scum out through another process. But by using some kind of filtering substance, sometimes sand, bacteria is erased from the equation.


You’d also see another method other than sand, like chlorine, to kill off bacteria, and although that may seem like a health risk, it’s necessary to keep the water clean when the waste is sent to a nearby river. The treatment plant also adds other chemicals to counteract the hazards of chlorine entering into the water and by doing so, your city will be able to protect marine life.


Although a garbage disposal might seem like a worse option for the environment, the wastewater treatment plants do their part in safely securing your unmentionable waste and recycle the water back into rivers. Landfills aren’t just ugly, they’re downright disgusting. They’re a major asset for the unwanted parts of our lives but they end up becoming the major outsource to pollution. The toxins, leachate, and greenhouse gases that pierce through the air cause worse and worse effects into the atmosphere.  


Image Contributed By Yoav Lerman From Flickr


Hiring a Professional or Professionals Through House Tipster


Now that you have all the information on the costs of installing your garbage disposal, check out who can help you in installing it. Although you can probably install one yourself, it can be quite a dangerous task to fulfill. Within your extensive notes and research, you’ll wonder how you can find the perfect professional for the job. 


As stated previously, all that time you’d be wasting on the application for a permit to change your pipes and drains, and all the labor that stacks along with a DIY, think about the plumbers located in your area! Check out House Tipster, and find the perfect professional for your home repair needs. How much does garbage disposal installation cost? Find out from professionals near you!


Feature Image By Jason Coleman From Flickr


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