Think before you flip that disposal switch. Garbage disposals are for getting rid of food scraps, right? Yes, but not all food scraps. Some scraps are better off composted or thrown away. Here's what you should never put in your garbage disposal.
The are many vegetables that can wreak havoc on your garbage disposal. You shouldn't put fibrous vegetables in the disposal as they'll bind up around the blade. Some of these vegetables are rhubarb, asparagus, celery, chard, artichokes, kale and lettuce.
It's OK to dispose of potatoes and potato peels as long as you only put in a little at a time. Potatoes can break down in a disposal and create a sticky starch paste that can gum up the mechanics of the unit.
Just because that blade is whirring doesn't mean that grease and oils won't clog your pipes. Just one batch of grease can have you calling a plumber. The best way to dispose of cooking oil without making a mess is to put it in a sealable container that you don't intend to recycle. Then just throw it in the trash.
It would seem like turning on the hot water while using your disposal would help the disposal by softening up the food with heat, but it's not true. Horizon Services advises to only use cold water so that any oils or fats that are in the foods you're disposing of can solidify and be chopped up.
You may have the biggest, baddest disposal on the block, but it wasn't made to chop up fruit pits and seeds. Pits are large enough to dent, bend and warp the blades. And they can even burn out the motor.