Continuous Feed vs. Batch Feed Disposals

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You may have noticed that garbage disposals come in two types of designs: continuous feed and batch feed. Design is one of the main shopping points to consider when buying a garbage disposal. In this article, we compare the two designs to help you determine which is the right choice for you.

Continuous Feed

Between the two designs, continuous feed garbage disposals are more common in households. As their name suggests, they run continually the moment you flip on the switch. This type of design provides some advantages and disadvantages.


  1. Speed – If you’re grinding large amounts of food, keeping the garbage disposal running gets the job done faster.
  2. Flow – You can throw food waste down the sink as you work instead of having to stop each time to turn on the garbage disposal.
  3. Price – As the more popular option, continuous feed garbage disposals are usually cheaper than batch feed garbage disposals.


  1. Safety – Because they run continually, the entry remains open and it can be easy to accidentally drop other things into the disposer or stick your fingers inside if you’re not careful.

Batch Feed

On the other hand, batch feed garbage disposals take in food in “batches” which you grind by closing up the entry and turning the disposal on each time. As you can imagine, its advantages and disadvantages are generally opposite those of continuous feed garbage disposals.


  1. Safety – Batch feed garbage disposals can not turn on until you insert the stopper over its entrance, so it’s a safer option because it minimizes the risk that foreign objects get grinded or fingers get inserted too deep.


  1. Time-consuming – You may not notice it with small amounts of food, but if you have a lot to grind, this design will take more time.
  2. Choice – Continuous feed garbage disposals are more popular so there are more options to choose from. Whereas some brands do not make batch feed garbage disposals at all. In these cases, they may sell a separate switch (button) that must be pushed to turn on the disposal so you can grind food in batches.

It should be noted that continuous and batch feed grind food equally well. Each person will ultimately choose the design that fits better with their lifestyle.

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