Removing Broken Glass

A plumber repairing the garbage disposal

What To Do if Broken Glass Gets in Your Disposal

It happens. The glass slips from your fingers and shatters in your sink.

More than likely, some glass landed in your disposal, and it’s important to remove the glass before using your garbage disposal again.


Careful attention is needed to avoid risking damage to your appliance or injuring yourself!

  • First, stop the power to your unit. Don’t just switch it off; unplug it from the power source or switch the breaker off.
  • Second, remove larger pieces of glass with kitchen tongs (needle nose pliers work well too).
  • After removing the larger pieces of glass, you need to remove as many of the smaller pieces as possible. This can be done by using the hose attachment on your wet/dry vacuum (don’t use your regular vacuum; there could be water in the disposal). Insert the hose into the mouth of the disposal, reaching it down to the bottom. Run the vacuum for 2-3 minutes. Note: If you have a double sink, block the other opening to increase suction.
  • Next, use the hex key that comes with your garbage disposal to rotate the blades. Rotate and repeat with the vacuum.
  • Using your hex key, rotate the blades one more time to ensure they are clear.
  • Reconnect or turn the power back on to your garbage disposal.
  • IMPORTANT: Since there may still be very small pieces of glass in your disposal, before turning it back on, you will want to protect yourself from flying glass. Be sure to look away and stand 12-18 inches away from your sink. Or, if you have a grease splatter screen or a colander, you can cover the opening with them. Just make sure adequate water flow is allowed.
  • The final step is to run your disposal with cold water for a couple of minutes. If your disposal does not turn on, you may need to reset it. Unplug the system and push the reset button on the bottom of the disposal. Reconnect to power.

If these tips didn’t do the trick – give us a call at 72 Degrees Air Conditioning, Heating & Plumbing for a garbage disposal repair or replacement at (830) 213-2568 and we’ll get you back up and running!

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