Grease traps are an important part of any water treatment system where fatty oils, sludge and grease is entered into the plumbing system. As the name implies, the grease trap will trap the grease and other oils and separate it from the water. This is designed to ensure the heavier solids are not passing into the city sewer lines and/or clogging your own drains.
How it Works
The oily and greasy substances will pass through a catching system that is designed to cool the substances off and allow them to solidify. Any water will pass through and go down the drain as usual. The items in the grease trap will need to be disposed of properly and frequently to avoid problems with the system.
In many instances, businesses will have a company come in to perform grease trap maintenance. This includes emptying out the collection bin as well as making sure that the catching system is working appropriately.
Problems to Avoid
Without proper grease trap maintenance being conducted, there are a lot of problems that can arise. These problems are usually expensive, which is why it’s critical to understand how to clean a grease trap properly.
When the grease is not being effectively trapped, the oil and grease will solidify into the drains. This can lead to blockages in the drain line as well as back-ups. This can cause health and sanitation issues as well as foul odors.
If there is too much FOG (fat, oils, and grease) being deposited into city sewer lines, it can also result in significant fines as a result of breaking city ordinance.
Check on city and state ordinances. Many will dictate how often the grease trap needs to be pumped out. This should be scheduled by a company ahead of time to ensure that it is being done on a regular basis to avoid any kind of unnecessary fines.
Liquid waste can be dealt with appropriately by having the necessary dry powder to help soak it up. Even though it is liquid now, it won’t stay that way for long. Proper training of your maintenance staff can ensure that everyone knows what FOG is and what is considered FOG within your facility. Many times, the issues stem from ignorance on the staff’s part. This is always directly related to the amount of training that they receive.
A bacteria additive can also be used within the collection tank for the FOG. These will reduce the fats, oils and grease levels as well as any other organic waste. It works by breaking down and digesting the waste. The benefit of using an additive is that it can cut down on the amount of pump-outs the collection tank requires, which can greatly reduce costs. These are available in a liquid form as well as a bacteria block.
Avoid letting staff rinse hot water down the drains and into the grease trap because this will prevent the grease from cooling and thus it will be flushed into the drains and into the city sewer lines, where fines will eventually be generated.
Slow draining sinks and odors coming from the drains are often a sign that FOG is lingering and that grease trap maintenance needs to be improved. When you want to learn more about grease trap maintenance, start with city and state ordinances. They will dictate what you can and cannot use as well as how often you need to be emptying your tanks. Additionally, a little training can go a long way with your staff. Once you have your grease trap in place, maintaining it is of the utmost importance – whether you do it in-house or hire a company to do it for you.
About this author:
Green Turtle oil separators and traps are available across the United States and help prevent fats, oils and grease from entering the water system.