Broken Glass In Garbage Disposal: How To Remove


Mistakes happen, but it shouldn’t be who broke the glass and how it ended up in your plumbing line. Broken glass in garbage disposal can be detrimental. The glass shards cannot break down and damage your disposal and piping system. 

However, If you take steps and safely remove the blades, your problems will be over. In general, Broken glass in garbage disposal can cause injuries and damage your unit. Remove the shards with tongs or ask for help to avoid the risks. There are easy steps to get the glass out of your garbage disposal. 

Step 1: 

assemble the tools needed to remove the broken glass in garbage disposal. These include;

  • Thick rubber gloves
  • Needle nose tongs
  • Vacuum 
  • Bowl
  • Allen Wrench/broom handle

Step 2: 

Turn off the power flow to your garbage disposal. You can do that by pulling the plug out of the socket or switching off the main switch. Either way, it will ensure your garbage disposal is not running and does not have power. It is a safety procedure when repairing or cleaning electrical apparatus in your home and away. 

Step 3: 

With the help of the tongs, begin by removing the large pieces of glass. Pull all the glass pieces from the disposal. Be cautious not to push the glass further into the unit or against the blades. Most pieces will still be on the top of the garbage disposal drain opening. Place the pieces in a bowl to avoid stepping on them and causing further cuts.

Step 4: 

Dislodge trapped glass pieces. In step three, you may notice some glass that can’t come out because they are trapped. You must dislodge the pieces to ensure none remains in the disposal. Depending on the model, you will use an Allen wrench port. It comes underneath the disposal. Insert the wrench into the port and turn it to and fro. If your disposal doesn’t have this feature, use a broom handle. Please insert it into the disposal and swirl it around to remove the trapped glass. Repeat step 3 while cautiously placing the glass pieces in a bowl. 

Step 5: 

At this step, you have removed the visible shards. Removing small pieces, though visible, can be a challenge, so use the vacuum to remove them by sucking. Fix the long attachment into the garbage and start the machine to begin sucking. Help the machine to suck large pieces individually.  

Step 6:

After sucking the tiny glass pieces, more could be at the belly of your garbage disposal. These, too, are dangerous and can damage the plumbing system or the disposal. So you must turn the shards. Use the broom handle again to turn the blades so the vacuum can suck up all the small pieces. If your disposal has an Allen Wrench, stir the shards like in step 3.

 Step 7:

Congratulations, as you can now reconnect your disposal. Replug and switch on the breaker to turn on the unit. You must cover the drain to prevent the disposal from ejecting objects from its compartment. Once you cover it, turn on the water faucet to remove any shards left in the disposal. Also, the machine will chop and flush any objects down the drain. 

Step 8:

Observe the garbage disposal and see if it works well. If not, ask someone to help you to remove the disposal from your sink. Place it on a surface and remove any pieces of glass still in the unit. If there are still signs of jamming, turn it off and call a professional.  

Step 9: 

Clean your vaccuum and drain all the water to avoid mold growth. 

Step 10: 

Dispose of the glass pieces in a glass waste box, awaiting the recycling company to pick them up.

How To Get Broken Glass Out Of Garbage Disposal Without A Shop Vac

You cannot sit there helpless if you do not have a shop vac. You must remove the broken glass, or your garbage disposal become useless. The glass can also damage the plumping system and cause expensive repair damage. If you do not have a shop vacuum, you will not vacuum the small pieces of glass, which are still dangerous for your garbage disposal. But you must try your best.

First, unplug your unit from the power source to avoid electric-related injuries. Use the tongs to remove as many pieces of broken glass as possible. You can remove the disposal, place it on a flat surface and evacuate the pieces until they are over. When doing this task, you want as much as possible to avoid accidents, so do not put your fingers in the unit. When you complete the exercise, connect the disposal. Hopefully, the machine will work and crush the smaller shards. If not, call a kitchen plumber.

When To Call A Professional

Your garbage disposal is an expensive installation, so you do not want to mess up with it. If removing broken glass in garbage disposal is overwhelming or you do not have the proper equipment, call a professional to help you. Also, do not re-attempt the DIY process if the garbage disposal continues to make strange noises or rattle after removing shards.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How do you clean a broken glass sink?

A: You must be cautious when clearing broken glass from your sink. Wear gloves and grab a few paper towels. Fold and wet, then press on the pieces of glass. Dispose of in a glass waste and repeat until the sink is free from glass. The chards will all stick on the wet towels making it easy for you to dispose of the waste.

Q: How do you repair a garbage disposal?

A: Repairing a broken garbage disposal requires professional help. Contact your plumber or garbage disposal experts for the correct diagnosis and repair. Do not engage in system repair, especially if you do not have the relevant tools and knowledge to deal with the machine.

Q: Can you put broken glass in a dustbin?

A: Dumping broken glass in a dustbin is a risk to you, those around you, and the garbage collectors. Please safely dispose of the waste by calling a recycling company to pick up the glasses or putting them in a glass waste box. Alternatively, follow the proper disposal process for dangerous waste in your city.  

Q: How do you get a small object out of a garbage disposal?

A: If a small object falls into your garbage disposal, don’t leave it there as it can damage your unit and cause you many dollars to repair. Turn off your garbage disposal and use kitchen tongs to reach the disposal neck. Turn the tongs around until you hold the object and pull it out.  

Q: What causes a garbage disposal to break?

A: A garbage disposal can stop working due to electrical problems such as a flipped socket or a damaged internal circuit. It can also stop working if a wooden, metal, or glass object obstructs or tries to crush it. A broken seal or grinder can prevent the disposal from operating correctly.

Parting Shot

For your garbage disposal to last long, you must take care of it. One of the ways is to remove any object that gets in there as soon as you notice it. That includes metallic, plastic, and metallic objects. Also, broken glass in garbage disposal is disastrous. It can damage it and your plumbing system. So, any time you suspect some of your broken bottle pieces made their way into the unit, remove them. Follow the steps we highlighted to keep your equipment safe.

By Shawn Roberts

Shawn Roberts is a renown culinary enthusiast with a deep love for food and cooking. He has decades of experience in the kitchen. In his career, Shawn Roberts shares his expertise, recipes, and insights to inspire and guide you on your own culinary journey. Together with his team of kitchen décor experts, you can make your cooking space a little heaven. Get ready to explore a world of flavors and creativity with Shawn Roberts