My roommate has no common garbage disposal cents
November 28, 2006 10:30 AM   Subscribe

I have a penny stuck in my garbage disposal.

My problem is that it is stuck underneath one of the two spinning blades in the disposal. I have looked for the online videos and found nothing that can help me fix this since its wedged in there so well. I've tried "banging" it out with a broomstick. If I could fit two hands in my sink I could possibly “floss” it out. My next step is to call a plumber/maintenance staff but I really do not want to. Any suggestions of how to fix this problem?
posted by thetenthstory to Home & Garden (10 answers total)
I would try oiling the penny and using a screw driver to shove it out. Otherwise you might call a plumber and see if they have any advice.
posted by sulaine at 10:32 AM on November 28, 2006

My disposal has a socket on the bottom for a hex-wrench. I've used that in the past to dislodge coins. Basically a slight turn in the "wrong" direction will free stuff that's stuck.
posted by baltimore at 10:40 AM on November 28, 2006

If i understand your situation, I would suggest bent tweezers, I second baltimore's suggestion, and you could always remove the disposal and turn it upside down. I had to replace my disposal once the night before a large party with no hopes of getting a plumber to fix it in time and I found that it wasn't too difficult to change the disposal myself. There are many places to see how this is done. Here is one.

Perhaps some floss or wire drawn between two bent tweezers would help you "floss it out," as you suggest. Just ensure that the tweezers are long enough. Good luck.
posted by battlecj at 11:12 AM on November 28, 2006

It is not too hard to remove the disposal from the bottom of your sink yourself. It twists off easily, you just need to 1) disconnect the power (circuit breaker) and 2) disconnect the drainpipe, which is most likely pvc and can be loosened with adjustable pliers/wrench. If you are even a little handy, the disposal isn't too hard to take apart then and you could probably pretty easily get the penny out.
posted by pithy comment at 11:27 AM on November 28, 2006

Here's a garbage disposal diagram if it is any help.
posted by pithy comment at 11:31 AM on November 28, 2006

I had this exact same problem, actually. Does your idiot roommate like to snap pennies around?

There's a lock collar on the disposal where it mates with the sink. Lift/support the disposal and twist it, it'll come off. Then you can work directly in the disposal which is marginally easier. I had to reach in and twist the spinners back and forth what seemed like a million times before I dislodged Honest Abe, but mine was stuck in the gap on the side. Sounds like it'll be an easier time for you.
posted by phearlez at 3:41 PM on November 28, 2006

Oh, and unplug the thing before I jam your hand in it, if possible, eh?
posted by phearlez at 3:41 PM on November 28, 2006

Yeah when I was about to stick my hand in it earlier I realized my choice of action was not smart. Thanks for the comments, I'll come back and say which worked best.

As for my idiot roommate who couldn't understand the phrase, "Don't use the garbage disposal, I'm going to go get a flashlight so I can pull it out before it gets stuck." But that's the least of his irresponsibleness and a completely different post.
posted by thetenthstory at 5:18 PM on November 28, 2006

(Oh and I guess I should say it got in there from him forgetting about the penny in his coffee mug before he dumped it out. wtf?)
posted by thetenthstory at 5:20 PM on November 28, 2006 [1 favorite]

Alternating ice and hot water worked for me to extract a dime that was wedged in. Along with repeated thumpings with a broom handle.
posted by jeribus at 10:25 AM on November 29, 2006

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