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How to remove a garbage disposal flange?

The garbage disposal flange is one of the least glamorous parts of your plumbing system, but it’s important all the same because it keeps your sink from leaking keeps your disposal attached to the sink. If you want to get rid of your garbage disposal and replace it with a different model, you’ll need to remove the flange first, and you’ll need to do this without damaging your sink!

removing of a garbage disposal flange

Removing a garbage disposal flange can be confusing if you don’t know what you’re looking at or how it works, but once you understand how the components work together, removing your flange becomes much easier. This article explains what a flange is and why it might need to be removed from your garbage disposal, along with tips on removing the flange yourself, which can save you a lot of money that would otherwise go into paying a professional.

What is a garbage disposal flange?

A garbage disposal flange is a collar that holds and connects the disposal to the drain underneath the sink. Typically, it holds on to the disposal with the help of three screws. In other words, a flange is like a mounting bracket for the garbage disposal.

The metal flange is placed directly inside the sink drain and is sealed using the plumber’s putty. Also, it is a little sloped, which makes water run down the drain without any hindrance. Most disposal flanges are compatible with all disposal models, but some flanges can be incompatible with a few models. So, check the compatibility when buying a new garbage disposal flange.

When does a garbage disposal flange need to be removed?

Most of the time, homeowners will want to remove a rusty and stuck disposal flange to replace it with a new one, but there can be several reasons to remove a disposal flange.

If you notice water leaking around your garbage disposal’s topside, there’s a chance you have an issue with the flange, which means you need to remove it so you can replace it or try to tighten it up with some plumber’s putty.

In addition, if you have a problem with your disposal and you want to check the cause, you need to remove it from the flange so you can quickly examine it and make any repairs or, in some cases, replace the unit.

Is it worth removing a garbage disposal flange yourself?

It’s tempting to call a plumber when something goes wrong with your garbage disposal, but you’ll never guess how easy it is to fix it yourself. A professional will cost you a lot of money to do a task that you can do very easily. So, I think you can give it a try if you like to DIY!

How to remove a garbage disposal flange?

Many people have questions about removing garbage disposal flanges, so I have decided to provide an in-depth guide on how these removable parts of your garbage disposal work. Follow these simple instructions the next time you need to take one flange off or put another on!

Step 1: Turn of water and power to the garbage disposal

Before you begin, turn off power and water to your garbage disposal. Your disposal may be hardwired or connected to a removable switch that you can turn off in your home’s circuit breaker box. If it’s connected to a circuit, shut it off at that breaker first. Turning off the water will ensure that your kitchen doesn’t get flooded. Also, remove any retaining screws so you can pull out your disposal unit from below. Don’t forget to hold on to the underside of the disposal when removing the screws!

Proceed with the next step once you’ve removed all of these things and are safe from harm.

Step 2: Take off the garbage disposal

It is an important step that can help you deal with this task more efficiently. After removing the three screws, lower the garbage disposal to the bottom of the cabinet, so it does not exert a downward force on the flange. Now, you can start working on removing the disposal flange. It makes the work easier as there is no extra weight on the flange.

Here is a guide to removing a garbage disposal and replacing it with a straight pipe.

Step 3: Spray WD40 to soften rust

The flange could be pretty rusty if it’s been there for some years. The flange will be stuck due to rust, so don’t try to force it open. Instead, find another way of doing things before you break something. Spraying penetrating lubricant is often very helpful for softening the rust. After leaving the oil on for a few minutes, use slip-joint pliers to turn the flange.

Step 4: Pry with a flat screwdriver

To pull off the top ring of the flange, pry it using a flat screwdriver. Use short motions with your screwdriver until you can get underneath it. Be very gentle while removing the flange, as you won’t be able to reuse it if it gets bent. Though, I don’t recommend using an old flange with new disposal. Reuse it only if you are tightening the flange or repairing the disposal.

Step 5: Scrap out old putty

After removing the old disposal flange, you will also need to clean the old putty remains. Any remains on the surface will not let the new flange sit properly, so use a flat scraper to scrap out any old putty still stuck to the sink. Also, clean up the flange too if you want to reuse it.

Removing the disposal flange is an easy task if you do it patiently. After successfully removing the flange, you can tighten a flange, put on a new flange, repair the disposal, or install a brand new one!

Replacing garbage disposal flange


The flange on your garbage disposal can wear down over time. It’s most likely that it will need to be replaced rather than repaired.  Moreover, it’s never a good idea to try and use new disposal with an old flange; it could lead to leaks and other significant problems. So when you install new disposal, get a new flange as well. That way, you won’t run into any issues down the road when it comes time for maintenance or repairs.

My name is Thomas Anderson, and I have worked briefly as a plumber. Even though I am currently working on a different career path I still help out my friends and family with their plumbing issues. This is a hobby blog where I share my knowledge with the audience through random articles. Through this blog, I hope to address some common questions about garbage disposals.