Anyone who’s worked in a restaurant is familiar with the grease trap. Most restaurant workers know that rank, unbearable smell that comes along with not regularly cleaning it out. In addition to ensuring that your kitchen doesn’t smell like rotting bar food, there are many reasons why it’s important to clean your grease trap every two to three months. In fact, most states require it by law! Here’s what you should know about cleaning your restaurant’s grease trap:
Grease causes sewers to overflow
The point of a grease trap is to keep grease out of the sewer system. However, a grease trap has to be maintained in order to be effective. When a grease trap goes too long between cleanings, the grease can leak into your restaurant’s drainage system, leading to grease buildup and clogs. The effects can even impact your city’s water system, causing sewers to overflow. If it’s traced back to your restaurant, you could face some hefty fines from the city.
Grease runoff is pollution
In addition to clogging drains, grease from poorly maintained grease traps can cause pollution. The grease itself is detrimental to animal life. It’s also important to cover your grease trap outdoors. Not only so animals can’t get in, but because rainwater can accumulate inside. If the trap becomes too filled with water, it can cause a spill, allowing grease to run off and spread outside into parking lots and down storm drains. Just because grease traps are located outdoors doesn’t mean they can’t contaminate the inside of the restaurant, either. Not only is this stagnant food waste a breeding ground for bacteria – hence the smell – but water mixed with the food and grease can create sulfuric acid. This toxic acid smells bad, as well as damages the steel and concrete from which the trap is constructed. Ensuring your grease trap is pumped out and cleaned regularly ensures you won’t have to pay for pricey grease trap repairs!
Before grease reaches the trap
In order to cut down on how much grease actually reaches the traps, regularly cleaning the grease machines beneath your restaurant’s sinks and the interceptors can be a great help. While it may seem like a hassle to clean these things once a week, you’ll find that keeping up with them makes the job much easier, as well as significantly cuts how often you need to get the traps cleaned.