How To Replace A Garbage Disposal With Regular Pipes

If you have a defective garbage disposal, and don't want ot replace it, you can change back to regular piping. Leaving the system as it is creates a foul odor. A novice should be able to replace the garbage disposal with regular piping. Here are tips to replace a garbage disposal with regular piping.

Prepare to Work

For this project, you need:

  • work gloves
  • old rags or towels
  • buckets
  • flashlight
  • plumbers putty
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • flat-blade screwdriver
  • putty knife or razor blade
  • wrench
  • hacksaw
  • sink strainer
  • T-fitting (optional)
  • S-trap
  • sink tail piece
  • regular pipes

Shut off water to the sink. Unplug the power cord to the garbage disposal, and turn the switch off in the breaker box. To ensure the electricity is off, try to turn the unit on again. If the unit is hardwired, use the Phillips screwdriver to remove the cover plate on the junction box, and disconnect the wires by untwisting the wire caps.

Remove the Garbage Disposal

Look for a drain pipe that has slotted screws running from the side of the unit to the adjacent sink. Set a bucket under the pipe to catch water, and lay towels or rags on the floor, if desired. Remove the screws on the pipe with the flat-blade screwdriver.

Hold carefully to the garbage disposal, as it is heavier than it looks. There should be a retaining ring fastened to the disposal's mounting bracket on top of the unit. Pry it off the pipe with the flat-blade screwdriver.

Some retaining rings may need to be detached with a Phillips screwdriver. Insert the screwdriver in the ring, and turn it to the left.

Detach the drain ring by twisting it to the left with your hand. Disconnect the gasket, then lift the disposal ring up and out. Detach the screws on the mounting bracket, remove the garbage disposal, and set it aside.

Attach the Pipes

Detach the drain flange using a pipe wrench. Use the putty knife to scrape old plumber's putty around the sink drain hole. If the putty is very hard, try scraping it with a razor blade.

If the pipes don't fit, trim them with a hacksaw. Connect the gasket and ring to the new sink strainer. Break off plumber's putty, and wind it into a rope about one-eighth of an inch thick. Press it around the sink drain opening.

Connect the tailpiece to the drain pipe by turning it clockwise. If the sink has a double bowl, attach a T-fitting to each side.

Connect the S-trap to the T-fitting by hand, and tighten the plastic screws by hand. Attach the other end of the S-trap to the drain pipe.

Restore power and water. Test the new pipes. If you experience leaks, or you don't trust your skill, contact a plumber. Visit to learn more.