The InSinkErator Badger 5XP 3/4 HP Garbage Disposal is a simple product with minimal features. It offers conventional values, with a little boost in power (as compared to the Badger 5 1/2 HP) and impressive build quality.
Unfortunately, the disposal’s grinding capability can be underwhelming as even thick parts of citrus peels could give it trouble. If you have the budget, there are certainly more cost-effective options on the market.
Things We Like
- High capacity
- Compact design
- External unjam mechanics
Things We Don’t Like
- Mediocre performance
- Heavy build
- Non-removable splash guard
- Loud operation
The Badger 5XP 3/4 HP Garbage Disposal’s appearance resembles that of the Badger 5 1/2 HP, only with a deeper bottom (because of the bigger motor, no doubt). The disposal is simply a grinding chamber attached to a motor inside a protective casing, so it’s very compact. But with all the metal details, it’s heavier than most kitchen disposers in the same power range.
We anticipate that the Badger 5XP will do better than the Badger 5 because of the more powerful motor. But the question is: by how much?
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Compared to Other Garbage Disposals
Although the results suggest that the Badger 5XP outperformed the Badger 5, the difference in reality, especially where it counts, is not remarkable. The 5XP indeed did better at breaking up tougher materials like raw bones, where every bit of power is needed. But in overview, the disposal leaves a lot to be desired.
4.4 Scrap Mix
The InSinkErator Badger 5XP and its 3/4-hp motor had a tough go at processing 90 ounces of random food scraps. It took quite some time to reduce everything down to a safe amount. Technically, the disposal did manage to grind down 99% of the input. Even then, the size of the leftover piece of lemon peel is everything but reassuring.
When we put the pictures that we had taken of the end products from the Badger 5’s run and the Badger XP's run, we couldn’t tell them apart. There was no apparent improvement in the output quality, and the measurements didn’t improve the outlook, either. The two garbage disposals struggled with the same type of food scraps and they shake and vibrate about the same, too.
Failed Raw Fish Scraps
The Badger 5XP is unfit to deal with raw fish scraps. After 3 minutes, it couldn’t even bring the input materials in the chamber down to a passable amount. Considering how it fared in the Scrap Mix test, this is not at all surprising.
5.7 Raw Chicken Scraps
The Badger 5XP delivered more interesting data when we let it process uncooked chicken bones. The disposal managed to crush all of the boney parts in the input; the stringy and spongy soft tissues, however, were a mess. It seemed that the disposal’s capability stopped at stripping those tissues off of the bones.
The Badger 5XP is basically a stronger Badger 5. It takes everything that the Badger 5 offers, namely strong craftsmanship and durable parts, and runs them on a beefier AC motor. Unfortunately, the benefits of the extra power don’t translate very well and leave the disposal’s grinding performance with a lot to be desired.
In our opinion, the InSinkErator Badger 5XP is more of an alternative than an upgrade.
In the Box
- InSinkErator Badger 5XP Garbage Disposal
- 3-Bolt Mount assembly
- Discharge tube
- Flange and bolts
- Jam-Buster Wrench
The Badger 5XP comes in a nice enough box with zero spot varnishing. While lacking that finishing coat makes the box less sturdy (you can see the box we received had already been dented from shipping), that’s much better for composting. All text on the box, in the manual, or on the registration slip is in English and Spanish.
The Badger 5XP consumes very little space under the sink as a 3/4-hp unit. If you’ve seen or held the Badger 5 before, add roughly an inch to the body and about 2 pounds to the overall weight.
- Backup flange
- Mounting ring
- Snap ring
- Fiber gasket
- Cushion mount
- Sink flange
- Lower mounting ring
The rigid design of 3-bolt mounting systems is particularly good at supporting heavy units. That’s why you often see big models using it, and here with the Badger 5XP. Depending on how handy you are, working with the 3-bolt design can be either easy or challenging. It’s not too complicated that expertise is required, but if this is your first-ever project, it might take some time to get it done right.
The Badger 5XP unit that we have doesn’t come with a pre-installed power cord so it’s more suitable for hardwiring than the (factory) corded version.
Accessories: Discharge Set
The discharge set includes an elbow outlet tube, a rubber gasket, a metal flange, and bolts. The tube is 1.5 inches in diameter, and the bolts have slotted drives with 3/8-inch hex heads. So either a flathead screwdriver or a wrench would work on them.
Every InSinkErator garbage disposal comes with a Jam-Buster wrench, also called a wrenchette, for installation as well as accessing the unjam mechanics.
6.5 Grind Chamber
The InSinkErator Badger 5XP has the exact same chamber as the Badger 5 1/2 HP, from capacity rating to the grinding components. They both offer rather generous holding chambers and use galvanized steel for most of the grinder assembly. Similar to the Badger 5, the 5XP’s chamber is unnecessarily narrow because of the fixed baffle piece.
InSinkErator’s induction motors operate at slow speeds and are at the mercy of materials getting stuck if the food scraps get too tough. Luckily, the high torque of the 5XP helps lower the risk of such jamming compared to weaker units.
Induction motors also run hot and they tend to short-circuit much more often than permanent magnet motors, especially when you leave them on for too long or when the load is too heavy; so keep that in mind if your family cooks regularly.
8.5 Build Quality
It’s fair to say that InSinkErator garbage disposals have the best construction quality on the market. The Badger 5XP for example, with its full-metal construction supported by experienced craftsmanship, can easily last up to ten years of service, provided that you don’t abuse it.
What the disposal lacks are features that smooth out the experience. There is no sound treatment and no anti-vibration in place, so if the foods are crunchy then prepare yourself for a bumpy ride. That said, if you mainly cook with produce, discards from fruits and veggies are little to no trouble.
The Power Badger series is InSinkErator packing more power into the original Badger design. Besides their generous holding capacity, models in the series are known for their durability and affordability.
Running the Badger 5XP 3/4 HP through performance evaluation wasn’t as effortless as we had hoped. But to be fair, our experience with the disposal could have been much smoother if we hadn’t decided to add raw animal bones to our tests because that was where it struggled the most.
8.0 Ease of Use
One thing we realized after testing a bunch of InSinkErator garbage disposals is that the low rotational velocity of the induction motor works much better with InSinkErator’s MultiGrind chamber design, which is exclusive to the Evolution Series. And by better, we mean producing better output quality in general and dealing with bones more effectively. Neither the Standard Badger Series nor the Power Badger Series—specifically, the Badger 5XP—has that.
Regardless, like the rest in the series, the 5XP has a comfortable holding chamber. If you’re a family of three whose main kitchen scraps are from produce, the disposal can hold its own pretty well.
The two most challenging aspects of setting the Badger 5XP up is its hefty weight and somewhat complex mounting pieces. If you’re okay with those, then there’s nothing else to worry about other than the plumbing. The product itself doesn’t take up much room, so you should find enough space even in smaller cabinets. It’s basically a grinder unit that attaches to the sink drain.
8.0 Smooth Operation
The Badger 5XP did not have a good run in performance evaluation. Most of the tough scraps—namely the fruit pits and the bones—seemed to challenge the disposal, if not the strength of its body frame than the effectiveness of its grinder chamber. Even citrus fruits like lemons, if not sliced up enough beforehand, could give the grinder a hard time.
5.0 Unjam Mechanics
You can use the included jam-buster wrench, or any Allen wrench with the appropriate size, to turn the flywheel (in the chamber) via a socket on the bottom of the disposal.
Behind the review
Be Nguyen is a writer and product reviewer. Being naturally curious about technology and its real-world applications, Be spent several years in university studying engineering before joining the team at HealthyKitchen101 where he disassembles, tests, and rates household appliances.
Lap is Head of the Research, Testing, and Review Team (RTR Team) at HealthyKitchen101.com, where he directs and supervises the testing of kitchen gadgets and appliances.
Nguyen Ntk is a graphic designer, photographer, and videographer whose philosophy centers around respecting and celebrating the beauty of reality. Through his lenses, Nguyen strives to capture the true essence of objects and events, showcasing and highlighting authentic features without distortion or exaggeration.