...IF you have the right service partner.
Your condiment delivery is MIA. The hostess is a no-show, again. The kitchen line is short-handed. The toilet overflowed. These are just some of the issues a restaurant manager must handle.
Grease is seldom on your mind –
until it becomes a problem.
FOG should never cloud your store's operations
Any commercial store or restaurant that prepares food needs a grease trap to separate FOG (Fats, Oils and Greases) from water that is returned to city wastewater and sewer lines. Failure to keep these clogging materials out of the city sewer lines can have unwanted consequences – from unpleasant odors, to trap blockages or overflows that can cost you operational downtime or regulatory fines.
Kitchen sinks, dishwashers, disposals, floor drains or any drain that would funnel FOG into the wastewater stream, first needs to filter through a grease trap. As shown in this simplified diagram below, the lighter weight grease and oils float to the surface while heavier particles sink to the bottom (the sludge layer). The water flows thru the outlet pipe, preventing the grease and solids from entering the water stream. Over time, the layers of grease and sediment build up, and if left unchecked, will eventually block the water outlet or be forced into the city sewer system.
Regular trap service will avoid these issues.
The frequency of grease pumping depends on size of the trap, volume of grease a restaurant produces, or local ordinances that may specify frequency. Regulations and maintenance requirements vary from city to city and state to state. You or your service provider should be up-to-date on all local, state and national regulations for grease traps and wastewater disposal.
7 ways a store can minimize grease trap issues and realize peace of mind
- Make sure your grease trap is properly sized for your kitchen; too small, it won’t remove FOG and solids efficiently, but if too large, it can become odorous as materials collect.
- Do not dispose of grill grease or cooking oil down your kitchen drains; have it recycled.
- Train your kitchen employees to scrape food waste from dishes into the trash, versus a kitchen disposal which empties into the trap, building up the solid layer and requiring more frequent service.
- Use bio-degradable detergents and minimize use of chlorine products. Do not pour enzymes, chemicals or bleach down your drain to ‘clean’ your trap; it can kill off beneficial bacteria in the trap or liquefy the fog AND sludge, enabling it to enter water stream where it will again harden and cause blockages
- Use COLD water to rinse greasy plates or cooking utensils; the grease solidifies and sinks to bottom of trap more quickly, clearing the trap’s water outlet drain.
- Remove the sludge layer as well as the FOG layer; over time the sludge will decompose and give off pungent odors that infiltrate your kitchen and/or erode the trap itself resulting in costly repair or replacement.
- Schedule regular trap pumping and cleaning with a reliable service provider who is aware of all regulations, understands traps and size requirements, disposes of trap material legally and responsibly, and maintains complete cradle-to-grave service records.
Remember – the store owner has Cradle-to-Grave Responsibility for trap material
The grease producer is responsible for the material removed from their grease trap from cradle (kitchen) to grave (disposal site). If your trap material is disposed of illegally and traced back to your store, you will be liable for any fines and repercussions. Grease spills or unlawful release of grease-contaminated water has resulted in fines from a few thousand dollars to as high as $50,000 per DAY until remedied.
Partnering with a reputable service provider will ensure your compliance and turn grease traps into a worry-free part of your business.