Efficient and thorough cleaning of grease traps is an essential part of commercial kitchen maintenance. Unless grease traps are regularly cleaned, fats, oils, and grease (FOGs) will accumulate, eventually causing fats to seep into the drainage system. This can cause frustrating and potentially costly drain blockages on your premises and contributes to a wider problem: fatbergs in communal sewers. Fatbergs have featured prominently in the news and are an environmental catastrophe that all businesses have a moral duty to try to avoid.
If you manage a commercial kitchen, you probably cook extensively using fats and oils, so a grease trap is essential equipment. But how often should these grease traps be cleaned?
The Rule Of ¼
While you won’t want to clean your grease traps more often than is necessary, a casual attitude to maintenance could result in the trap ceasing to work effectively. As a rule of thumb that is internationally recognised, a grease trap should be cleaned once it becomes one-quarter full, irrespective of its design.
The one-quarter rule (25% full) isn’t accidental or arbitrary. Once a trap becomes more than one-quarter full of fats, oils, or grease, it fails to prevent FOGs from entering the waste pipes. Once this happens, the chance of a blockage or an overflow soars and you’ll be faced with a maintenance problem that must be resolved to ensure your kitchen can operate normally.
How Often Do Grease Traps Need Cleaning?
While the rule of one-quarter is an invaluable guide to how often a grease trap should be cleaned, what does this mean in practical terms?
On average, a commercial kitchen or restaurant grease trap will require professional cleaning every one to three months. The exact timescale is dependent on the size of your facility, the type of cooking that you carry out, the capacity of the grease trap, and the volume of FOGs produced. If the grease trap requires cleaning more often than monthly, or you wish to extend the period between each clean, you should consider investing in a larger trap.
How Commercial Grease Trap Cleaning Services Will Benefit Your Catering Business
As the Environment Agency regards FOGs as a controlled waste substance, cleaning your own trap isn’t really a viable option unless you have the required training and licence in house. Grease trap waste must be professionally removed from your premises and disposed of by a licensed carrier, and accurate records must be kept, as you may be asked to provide evidence by the Environment Agency.
Find Out More
At Europa-VCS, we provide fast and cost-effective commercial grease trap cleaning for your business, with accurate records maintained to prove that you are compliant with your legal obligations.
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