Size, Appearance, and Design
Insinkerator Badger 5
The absolute last thing that you’re probably concerned about as it relates to a garbage disposer is the appearance. I mean they just sit up under your sink and grind your table scraps, right? But premium models, like the Excel models, are actually good looking. Go figure.
Appearance wise, the only difference that is immediately obvious is the lettering on the side of the machine. With the 500, the numbers are colored red. The measurements are exactly the same: about 13”L x 6”W x 6”H. It’s a good idea to measure your space before you purchase a new garbage disposal.
If you will be installing the disposal yourself, you should be more concerned with weight. These units are lightweight, about 12 or 13 pounds. The grinding chamber has a 26-ounce capacity which should be more than enough for most households.
The body is constructed out of a thick heavy-duty wear resistant plastic.
Power and Performance
Both the 5 and 500 are ½ horsepower machines which should enable them to power through nearly anything that you throw at it. The one-stage grind system is good at liquefying foodstuff into oblivion. These machines can handle a lot but don’t abuse it. It’s best to avoid overfilling this unit to capacity every time you use it as that may cause your machine to age prematurely. And of course you should never put in non-food stuff.
Part of measuring the performance of a garbage disposal is to consider the amount of noise that it generates. From all that I gather, I’d say that this unit will be pretty noisy, but probably no more so than your current unit. These machines aren’t premium models like the top of line units that cost 3 times as much.
You probably don’t want to be messing around for hours trying to install a new garbage disposal. So, it’s really cool that these machines are easy to install. If you’re old unit is a badger then the process is even easier. All you have to do is “twist off” the old unit and twist on the new one. Customers back up this claim of how easy it is to install.
Click here to get more details on the Badger 5
Click here to get more details on the Badger 500
Durability and Longevity
Insinkerator Badger 500
You should be really concerned about how long your new disposal is going to last. The reviews tell the story here. There really are mixed reviews about this product. Some customers swear by it. Other users tell a completely different story. But there are a few issues that consistently crop up over and again.
The grind chamber is made of a thin galvanized metal that rust out over time. Customers have reported having their cabinet flood as a result of this. Stress cracks develop in the outer housing of the unit and the unit then needs to be replaced. Some folks are used to replacing their badger 5 every couple years or so.
Personally, I think that with moderate use these machines will last for years, but exactly how long is anyone’s guess. There are just too many variables at play here.
You should also consider what a reasonable life cycle of a garbage disposal in this class would be. Personally, the Badger 5 installed in our kitchen has been in this house since before we moved in 4 years ago and it is still going strong. If I have to replace it any time soon, I won’t cry about it and outside of an upgrade, I would have no reason not get another one.
What’s included in the box?
If you order either model number you will get the following: quick-lock sink mount, jam-buster wrench, tailpipe, tailpipe gasket, installation instructions and stopper. Missing from the box is a power-cord. If you have an old badger then you will be able to use the previous power cord as long as it is still in good shape. Otherwise you’ll have to purchase that separately but it isn’t expensive (less than ten bucks). If necessary you might also want to pick up a dishwasher connector kit.
Both of these units come with a 2-year limited warranty. During the warranty period, the company will actually send an Insinkerator pro to your home to fix your issue.
We bought an Insinkerator Badger 500 from home depot. Our old badger 5 took a beating for years (it was installed years before we bought the house) before finally succumbing to the stress of everyday use. The chamber somehow developed a hole in the side.
All we can say is that the installation process is very simple, though it will probably take a little longer than advertised if this is your first time replacing a garbage disposal. The new badger 500 is much quieter than the old badger 5 we replaced it with. Which makes me think that these things probably get louder over time, like cars and such.
We paid a little more than I typically see the badger 5 on sale for although not by much. In the end the added cost was worth it in the end because we got it replaced quickly.
My advice is that if you are doing this job yourself, make sure that you have proper flat and Philips screw drivers. Make sure that you read the directions first (I didn’t and it cost me a little more time). Even the electrical aspect is easy to do as long as you follow the directions. Instead of hard wiring the unit directly to the house we bought the separate power cord kit. This too was easy to install. Also, make sure that you buy some plumbers puddy it’ll save you another trip to the store.