How to Unjam Your Moen Garbage Disposal

You are washing dishes when something that shouldn’t have gets into the disposal. Now it is jammed, and you don’t know what to do. Should you call someone? Can you fix it yourself? Did You break it?

It is likely a pretty simple fix. This short video walks you through the steps to correct the problem yourself. You this fails to work or if you don’t feel comfortable trying this yourself, you may need to call a trusted professional plumber.

If you live in Sarasota, Bradenton, or Lakewood Ranch, Florida, the professionals at Merit Plumbing would be happy to help.

Video Transcript:

[00:00:03.130] – JJ Donaldson. owner of Merit Plumbing

This is JJ with Merrit Plumbing in Sarasota, Florida, doing a quick video today on how to unjam a Moen garbage disposal or a garbage disposal that does not use the standard unjamming wrench. Most disposals, like InSinkErator, when you look under the disposal, they’ll have an Allen key slot in the center where you can stick this unjamming tool and rotate it to unjam the disposal. Moen and a few other brands, American Standard, Piranha, Waste King, they don’t have that, so they’re a little different. So usually the first way you’ll know your disposal jammed is you’ll turn it on and it won’t rotate. It will just the motor will make a humming sound.

[00:00:49.670] –

And usually what will happen when that happens is on the side of the disposal on the Moens, or underneath on the InSinkErator. In this case, it’s the Moen. So in this one on the side, there’s a red button here. This is the thermal protection switch. When the garbage disposal jams, the internal component will jam, but the motor still wants to turn.

[00:01:13.880] –

And if it keeps doing that, it will overheat and destroy the motor. So this red button will stick out just like a fuse, and it has to be pushed back in. So the first thing you’ll need to do is obviously unplug the disposal because you want to be safe, and then push that button in. Now, if it’s an InSinkErator, you can use your unjamming wrench from the center. The case with these Moen, you can’t do that. So what you’re going to need is this type of tool right here.

[00:01:51.810] –

The big box stores don’t have them in stock. You may have to order it online. I haven’t seen them in the stores and just did a quick search on Home Depot and they don’t carry it in the store. But once you get it, you stick it down inside the disposal, and you want to center it between the two impellers, which are the two kind of wings on the side that spin out. So you can put it down in there and then grab it and twist it.

[00:02:24.760] – And the disposal, depending on the condition of it, should start to rotate. This one’s rotating a bit. But this disposal we’re going to replace, because this is the second time in a month it’s done this, and it’s only two years old, It shouldn’t be doing this. So we’re going to replace this model with an updated one. But that is how you would go about unjamming a Moen disposal.