Ace Hardware garbage disposals

If you are in the market for a replacement garbage disposal, the unpretentious, unglamorous Ace Hardware garbage disposals deserve your consideration. That’s because they are InSinkErator garbage disposals in disguise.

Advantages of Ace hardware garbage disposals

Ace Hardware garbage disposals
Ace’s house brand garbage disposals look and work just like Insinkerators.

The advantage of Ace Hardware’s eponymous garbage disposals all stem from them being InSinkErator garbage disposals molded in a different color and labeled with a different brand name. They perform identically to the InSinkErator model of equivalent horsepower. When they jam, you can unlock them by spinning a bolt on the underside with the included tool, or in a pinch, an Allen key. And Emerson builds them in the United States. How often do you hear that anymore?

And crucially, if the garbage disposal you are replacing is an InSinkErator, you can use the existing mount. The Quick Lock mount is identical to the Insinkerator mount.

Installing an Ace Hardware garbage disposal

Ace disposals are easy to install if you’re replacing an existing disposal. Unplug the unit or shut off the breaker. Disconnect the disposal from the drain pipe. Then twist the disposal clockwise to release it from the mount. Be careful as you twist because it’s easy to underestimate how much the disposal weighs.

Then take the replacement Ace disposal and wire it using the wiring from the old one. Knock out the dishwasher plug if you have a dishwasher. Orient it the same way the old disposal was oriented when it came out, hold it in place, and twist it counterclockwise until it locks into place. Then bolt the old pipe onto the new disposal.

The first time I had to do this, probably took me 45 minutes. And I’ve never had a problem reusing the old mounting bracket and drain pipe, although I save those parts just in case. The mount doesn’t go bad though, it’s the putty or the caulk between the mount and the sink that goes bad.

If you take care of them, Ace Hardware garbage disposals last 15 to 20 years. And they cost a few dollars less than a name brand InSinkErator would.

Disadvantages of Ace Hardware garbage disposals

Ace garbage disposals don’t have any disadvantages other than the usual caveats with a garbage disposal. A 1/3 horsepower unit jams up more frequently than a heftier unit, but that’s true regardless of who made it and whose name is on it. If foregoing the brand name allows you to afford a half horsepower unit, that’s a worthy upgrade. If foregoing the brand name allows you to afford a 1/3 horsepower unit versus not affording one at all, that’s worthwhile too. Any disposal is a nice quality of life upgrade over not having one.

Don’t use drain cleaner in it. But that’s a downside with all garbage disposals.

The other potential downside is you may have to drive further to your nearest Ace then you would to a big box home improvement store, and it won’t be open as late as the big box stores are. But many Ace locations are locally owned and operated. Westlake stores are corporate owned. An Ace with any other name on it is a local business.

Why does Emerson make disposals for someone else?

In North America, every disposal on the market is made by one of two companies: Emerson or Moen. Emerson owns Insinkerator, and they don’t want to just cede the market for house brand garbage disposals to Moen. They might as well take a few cost cutting measures on the labeling and packaging and sell at a slightly lower profit margin than just give a sale to Moen.

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