Insinkerator Badger 1 Troubleshooting & Repair Guide

The Badger series of Insinkerator are the entry level models of garbage disposals. Insinkerator food waste disposers dominate the market as the most popular brand name of disposer out there. All models, including the Badger 1, feature a dura-drive induction motor and and a quick locking sink mount for ease of service and replacement.

Insinkerator Badger 1 Troubleshooting & Repair Guide

Insinkerator Badger 11 Insinkerator Badger 1 Troubleshooting & Repair GuideThe Badger 1 is the smallest and lowest cost model food waste disposer available for purchase. At only 1/3 HP, the motor is not very strong, and abusing this model is not recommended. In this troubleshooting guide & manual we will go over the basic problems that can create issues with an Insinkerator Badger 1 garbage disposal, and the troubleshooting method and steps for each issue.
If your Badger 1 is burned out, or leaking, you should consider upgrading to a higher quality food waste disposer.  This model is a good value, but is really only appropriate for light-duty use.

Common Issues

The three most common issues with this model are the following:

  • Clogged Garbage disposal / Dispoal won’t drain
  • Unjamming a jammed, or garbage disposal is making a buzzing noise
  • Garbage disposal is leaking at the seal, or leaking at the bottom.

Insinkerator Badger 1 Insinkerator Badger 1 Troubleshooting & Repair Guide
How to unclog an Insinkerator Badger 1 Garbage Disposal.

If the disposal is working, but the water and waste won’t go down, you have a clogged disposal chamber or a clogged disposer drain pipe. The first step is to use a plunger. 9 times out of 10, the plunger will do the trick. Fill the garbage disposal up until water starts to fill the kitchen sink. Then with the plunger firmly sealed at the mouth of the disposal, pump it up and down several times until you feel a suction building, and then yank the plunger up and hopefully dislodge the clogged particles. If this doesnt work, then you will have to remove the drain pipe exiting the side of the disposal and clean it out with a screwdriver or something long and skinny.

How to unjam an Insinkerator Badger 1 Disposal.

allen key Insinkerator Badger 1 Troubleshooting & Repair Guide


button Insinkerator Badger 1 Troubleshooting & Repair Guide

The Red Reset Button

If your disposal is not working at all, or making a quiet buzzing noise when you turn it on, it is jammed. Use the Insinkerator Badger 1 disposal unjamming key, or an allen key and insert it into the center bottom of the disposal and try to rotate it and free up the gears. See the diagram on the left side of this post for a picture of the allen key opening.

Once it is rotating freely, push the red reset button at the bottom of the garbage disposal to reset the motor.  The location of the red reset button is shown in the diagram on the left side of this post.


How to get rid of bad odors and sharpen the blades of your Insinkerator Badger 1 garbage disposal.

If the disposer has a bad smell, or doesnt seem to grind the food particles up that well, you may a dirty disposal, or dull blades. No problem, just put a bunch of ice cubes in your disposal and turn it on. The hard ice cubes will grind into slush and as they do, they will sharpen the blades and wash all the gunk out of your disposal chamber.   Don’t dump the ice in all at once, do it gradually while paying attention to the amount of motor strain.

Another trick is to pour baking soda in to the running disposal while also running a medium stream of water from the faucet.  Use the entire box of baking soda.   If the smell is really bad, dump in some baking soda and let it sit overnight.   Be sure to run the water for several seconds before starting the diposal up again in the morning.

Insinkerator Garbage disposal is leaking

If the disposal is leaking from the bottom, you will need to replace it with a new one as the chamber is most likely rusted through.  There are no suitable replacement parts for this situation.  You might also consider going with a heavier duty model that has a thicker, more rust-resistant chamber.

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  1. Christine
    Posted February 13, 2011 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    Thank you so much for this article! I was able to fix my garbage disposal because of your tips! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  2. Matt
    Posted March 5, 2011 at 1:20 am | Permalink

    Great walk through! I also was able to fix my 1/3 hp. Thanks for the help!!!

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