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How to Use Coffee Grounds to Keep Your Garbage Disposal Fresh

There are few things more satisfying than the sound of a garburator grinding away after you’ve finished a delicious meal. But your noisy friend doesn't just sit idly and wait for food to be thrown its way, it needs to be fed the right things to keep it working properly. If you frequently use your garbage disposal to get rid of excess food, the accumulated grease might eventually clog it up. Combined with a steady stream of water, using coffee grounds in your garbage disposal can help break down any grease and oils left behind after rinsing dishes. Here are some tips on how to keep your garbage disposal fresh with coffee grounds.

coffee grounds in garbage disposal

What are the benefits of using coffee grounds in a garbage disposal?

There are a few reasons why coffee grounds are great for your garbage disposal. First, the grounds are very absorbent, meaning that the oils and grease that accumulate in your garbage disposal will be absorbed and neutralized. Second, the grounds are highly alkaline, helping to break down food and prevent odors from developing in your garbage disposal. Third, coffee grounds are very cheap to buy and make great compost. If your city has a composting program, you can use coffee grounds as fertilizer for your indoor plants. Lastly, if your garbage disposal is getting old and frequently jams, coffee grounds can help unclog it. However, keep in mind that coffee grounds will only work on a clogged garbage disposal if the problem is caused by grease and oils. If there is something stuck in the disposal, coffee grounds will do very little to help unclog the disposal.

How to use coffee grounds in your garbage disposal

Before feeding your garbage disposal with coffee grounds, make sure that they’re clean. If so, you can use them to clean your disposal: simply pour about two cups in the disposal, run the disposal for about 10 seconds, then pour about one cup of cold water down the disposal. Make sure to run the disposal for another 10 seconds to help the coffee grounds break down any grease and oils. If your disposal is clogged, follow the same procedure, but make sure to feed the grounds slowly to prevent further clogging. If the clogging is stubborn, you can also try running hot water to wash down the coffee grounds instead of cold water.

Which type of coffee grounds should you use?

Regular coffee grounds will do the trick, but you might want to try switching to a different brand or variety of coffee. Darker roasts are typically stronger than lighter roasts, so if you normally use a light roast, try using a darker variety. Coffee beans and ground coffee are both rich in oil, which is why both are effective for cleaning your garbage disposal. The only thing you should be careful about is how you prepare the coffee grounds: for finer coffee grounds that will slide down your disposal easier, you can use a coffee grinder to grind beans; for coarser coffee grounds that will easily break down in your disposal, pour the beans into a kitchen towel can and bash them with a heavy object.

How to prepare coffee grounds for your garbage disposal?

The easiest way to prepare coffee grounds for your disposal is to put them in a coffee filter and tie the filter off with a string made of biodegradable material. Then, drop the coffee filter in the disposal and run the disposal with water until the coffee grounds have dissolved. If you don’t have coffee filters, you can simply put the grounds in a paper towel and then tie it up top with a string, just as you would do with the filter. Then, proceed as described above.

How often should you use coffee grounds for your garbage disposal?

You should use coffee grounds once a week at the most. You don’t want to use coffee grounds too often as the grounds might start to build up in your disposal. The best way to find out how often you should be using coffee grounds is to check your garbage disposal manual. If your disposal has an “oil” or “grease” symbol, you should be using coffee grounds once a week. If it has a “food” symbol, use coffee grounds once every two weeks.

What Else You Can Use With Coffee Grounds?

If you have a particularly stubborn clog, you can use baking soda and vinegar to unclog your garbage disposal. Just pour a small amount of baking soda down the disposal, and then pour vinegar over the baking soda. Wait a few seconds and run the disposal. Additionally, if your garbage disposal is especially dirty, you can use a biodegradable cleaner to help freshen it up. Just make sure to follow the instructions on the label, and avoid getting the cleaner in your eyes.


Coffee grounds are a cheap and effective way to keep your garbage disposal running smoothly. They’re also environmentally friendly and safe to use, provided that you’re using clean grounds that haven’t been contaminated with harmful bacteria. If you want to keep your garbage disposal fresh, you should use coffee grounds once a week or once every two weeks. They’re easy to use and won’t break the bank, meaning that every household can maintain a clean disposal without spending a fortune on chemical-based cleaners. Of course, the environment, too, will thank you for it.

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