We’ve all had that moment. You’re washing dishes and then you go to drain the water only to realize that your wedding ring is missing from your finger and has gone down the garbage disposal or sink drain.
But where did it go?
A wedding ring can easily become lost in your garbage disposal or sink drain if not properly sized or if you don’t wear gloves when doing the dishes. Luckily, you might be able to get your wedding ring from your garbage disposal more easily than you think.
With a little bit of stealthy maneuvering (and a bit of luck), you could have your wedding right back on in no time.
If You Can See the Wedding Ring in the Disposal
Using a flashlight, see if the wedding ring is visible inside of the disposal. If so, then you might be able to retrieve the ring without too much trouble. Follow these steps below to attempt to retrieve your wedding ring from your disposal.
1. Unplug the Garbage Disposal
You should never begin work on your garbage disposal if you haven’t first unplugged it. It’s especially unsafe if your wedding ring has gotten jammed in your garbage disposal. Allowing the motor or blade to run with the ring inside will not only damage the ring, but also the disposal’s blade. More importantly, if you are ever reaching inside the disposal, an unplugged unit means that you don’t have to worry about accidentally grinding your hand.
Which leads us to our next point…
2. Keep Your Hands Out of the Disposal
If at all possible, don’t put your hands in the garbage disposal.
It’s difficult to see what is going on inside of your disposal, meaning that you could easily run your hand across the blade or across another piece of sharp metal. This will cause lots of blood, a trip to the emergency room, and lots of cash. Just don’t do it.
3. Try Using a Magnet
So if you can’t stick your hand down your kitchen drain, how are you going to get your wedding ring out? First, try using a magnet. A long magnet or a plain old refrigerator magnet tied to a string will do the trick. Dangle the magnet just inside the kitchen drain and see if it picks up your wedding ring. Got a ring made out of silver or gold? Sorry, your wedding ring isn’t magnetic. You’ll have to try something else.
4. Try Using Pliers, Tongs, or a Long Wooden Spoon
Shine a light down your kitchen drain. Can you see your wedding ring? If so, try using pliers, kitchen tongs, a long cooking spoon, or other useful device to scoop up the ring. Remember – refrain from putting your hands in your garbage disposal.
5. Check if Your Wedding Ring is Stuck in the P-trap
Still haven’t found your wedding ring? It is possible that your ring went all the way through the disposal and is stuck in the u-shaped pipe below the kitchen sink. Many p-traps have drain plugs or cleanout plugs at their lowest point. This make it easy to open up the p-trap and remove any waste that has collected there. Place a bucket under the pipe, remove the drain plug, and (hopefully) discover your wedding ring inside.
If your p-trap does not have a cleanout plug, you’ll have to remove the slip nuts on either end of the pipe and take out the entire u-shaped section. You can do this yourself, or have a professional do it just to be on the safe side.
6. Still No Luck? Call a Professional Plumber
If you still cannot locate your wedding ring in your garbage disposal, it is likely that the ring is stuck inside the unit itself. In this case, we recommend calling your local plumbing professional to disassemble the garbage disposal and reveal your wedding band.
If You Can’t See the Wedding Ring in the Disposal
If you can’t see your ring but you’re positive that it fell into the sink drain, don’t lose hope. Call your local plumber and have them inspect your garbage disposal. It could be that your ring is stuck somewhere inside the disposal or in another section of easily accessible pipe.
Remember – don’t run the disposal if you think your ring is inside of it. You will only cause damage to your wedding ring and ruin or jam your disposal in the process. My Plumber CA offers garbage disposal repair in San Diego and beyond. Call us today to schedule a plumbing repair appointment ASAP.