Grease Trap Cleaning

Grease trap cleaning may help keep your restaurant operating smoothly, and commercial plumbing service can help you avoid the unpleasant. These costly backups occur when fats, oils, and grease do not get caught before they enter your sewage system.

grease trap cleaning

What’s a Grease Trap and Why Must it be Cleaned?

It is necessary to install a Grease Trap in any plumbing fixture, such as a kitchen sink, dishwasher, disposal, or floor drain, that might potentially introduce FOG into the wastewater stream. As seen in this picture, heavier particles fall to the bottom of the container, whilst grease and oils rise to the top.

Because the water exits through the output pipe, it does not mix with the grease and solids that could otherwise be present in the water. Suppose the accumulation of grease and sediment is allowed to continue uncontrolled for an extended period. In that case, it may eventually obstruct the water exit or be pushed into the municipal sewage system.

How to Clean Your Grease Trap?

Grease traps are meant to catch fatty oils, greases, and sludge and to separate the oils from water, as the name indicates. As the chemicals cool and harden, the water flows into the drain as usual. This system must be checked and serviced regularly to keep your grease trap clean. Learning how to clean a grease trap may save your organization a significant amount of money if done correctly.

  • Pry the grease trap lid off using a soft bar. It’s essential to take your time while removing the grease trap lid since there are gaskets there. If you break them, you’ll have to pay for new ones.

  • The grease trap’s components may be examined once the lid has been removed. You will need to know where the components are stored and how to reinstall them to have the cleaning done correctly. When reinstalling the trap, it may be helpful to make a schematic of the trap’s inside to reference.

  • Enter the grease trap using a wooden dowel or measuring stick. To mark the dowel with grease and oils, gently lead it into the trap and swirl it around a little. Using this method, you may know how much debris is currently in the trap.

  • Determine how many inches of waste there is by removing the dowel and measuring it using a tape measure. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issues a FOG (fatty oils and grease) pump-out report, which you should keep track of (EPA).

  • Remove any water from the tank of your grease trap using a small bucket. After collecting the garbage, you may reuse the water by storing it in a more giant bucket or trash bin and then pouring it down the drain.

  • Use the little bucket to remove the grease trap waste. Empty the trapped bucket of solid trash by carefully scooping it into the device’s opening. Using a heavy-duty plastic garbage bag or similar container, seal the waste.

  • With your bucket, clean the trap’s top and the trap’s sides. Dispose of any fat or oil chunks stuck to the trap. A wet/dry vacuum is a great way to remove even more debris from the trap.

  • Hand washes the lids, trap sides, and other components in a sink filled with warm soapy water. Use a steel pot scrubber to eliminate the stench and surplus garbage. Rinse the screens and other components thoroughly with water to get rid of soap and other gunk.

  • Following your schematic, reinstall the grease traps’ components. Once everything is in place and operating correctly, replace the cover.

  • Make a copy of your FOG report for your use. Send the report’s original to the address provided.


Depending on the size, location, and kind of grease trap, there are a few different methods to clean a grease trap manually. Keeping your grease traps clean and well-maintained is easy if you follow a weekly maintenance program. Once your restaurant is closed for the day and everything has been cleaned, you’ll want to begin. Cleaning your grease trap in the morning before you begin your opening process may be an option for you as well. For the greatest results, no matter when you decide to do it, follow the procedures above.

Must Needed Things for Grease Trap Cleaning

Cleaning the grease trap is a no-brainer for any restaurant, coffee shop, grocery store, or commercial food outlet management.

Removing the tangle of fats, oils, and grease (FOG) is unpleasant, but it must be done often. Cleaning the grease trap is a simple task that only requires moderate muscular energy for a short period.

To begin, you’ll need the proper equipment:

Equipment Why it Needs
Rubber Gloves To keep your hands safe
Gas Mask To protect you from bad smells
Protective coveralls To protect your clothes from FOGs
Crowbar To take the grease trap lid off
Scraper To clean the tank
Shop Vacuum To get the FOGs out

Grease Trap Cleaning Price

The size of the grease trap affects the price of a professional grease trap cleaning. A professional may clean grease traps, costing anywhere from $115 to $1040 on average.

A grease trap cleaning service is a good idea whether your restaurant has an enormous grease trap or if you don’t want to deal with the hassle of cleaning it yourself.

In addition to restaurants of all kinds, school cafeterias, hotels, and hospitals have all used grease trap cleaning services to keep their grease traps in tip-top shape.

Schedule frequent grease trap cleanings to verify that your food company is adhering to local regulations on grease trap cleaning.

Tips to Maintain kitchen Grease Trap Maintenance

Keeping it clean and well-maintained keeps a slew of problems at bay, from bad scents to equipment failures and penalties. Millions of dollars are spent each year in the United States to remove FOG from sewage systems.

FOG stands for fats, oils, and greases, which may be obtained from plants, animals, or a combination of the three. The yellow oil is the consequence of deep-frying, while the brown grease comprises FOG that floats or sinks into solids. When fryer oil is disposed of inappropriately, it may significantly impact the environment.

The importance of kitchen grease traps cannot be overstated, as they are crucial in preventing environmental damage and ensuring that restaurants have one less thing to worry about. Here are five things you need to know about kitchen grease traps:

The Basics of Grease Trap Knowledge

To prevent FOG from entering the wastewater system, plumbing devices such as grease traps and grease interceptors are used. Grease traps may be classified in two ways. Smaller levels of FOG are collected in interior traps, which are commonly found in the kitchen near the sink or dishwasher.

In contrast to interior traps, which are installed within your home, outside traps are usually significantly bigger and may store tens or even hundreds of liters. Due to their vital role in avoiding expensive sewage issues, grease traps are required in many localities.

Cleaning the Grease Trap Regularly

Glycemic fat from restaurants, residences, and businesses accounted for 47% of reported sewage obstructions, according to an EPA report to Congress on combined sewer overflows (CSOs) and sanitary sewer overflows (SSOs). FOG builds up in your grease trap when water drains through it, making it more difficult for the water to go. Thus, the trap is overflowing.

You may avoid costly plumbing bills by getting your trap cleaned regularly. In addition to eliminating unpleasant smells, keeping your trap regularly cleaned can keep your customers happier. A well-trained service professional may assist avoid grease trap problems before they have an opportunity to develop.

Frequency of Grease Trap Cleaning

The quantity of oil in your kitchen and the size of your grease trap will influence how often you should clean it. In most places, restaurants are required by law to clean their traps regularly enough to ensure that less than a quarter of their food waste is accumulated. At least once a quarter, and often as once a month, this leads to a lot of cleaning.

It is recommended that a grease trap or interceptor be pumped out and cleaned at least four times annually, or more often if necessary, according to the Greater Augusta Utility District. Local vendors may assist you to figure out the frequency of your grease trap cleaning after analyzing your grease trap and creating a maintenance program that works for you.

Reasons for Infrequent Grease Trap Cleanup

If you don’t clean your trap regularly, it might hurt your business. When your trap isn’t cleaned, you are increasing your chance of odours and may also be charged extra fines. FOG becomes more challenging to remove and more time-consuming to clean as it collects.

Overflowing drains and drainage concerns might indicate that the incoming or outgoing line is blocked by cooking oils, fats, and grease. To clear the pipes, you may need to call a plumber, depending on the location of the obstruction. If you have an overflow, you might be punished by the city.

If your cleaning takes much longer than planned because of a break-in frequency, you should expect to pay an overage cost from most contractors. If you’re trying to save money, cutting down on cleaning frequency may seem like a good idea, but it generally costs you more over time.

Cleansing the Grease Trap

You should expect a service expert to use a pump to empty your traps and a scraper to remove any collected FOG when they come. In addition, they’ll take measurements to see how much FOG has built up since your previous deep cleaning was performed. Your cleaning frequency may be reconsidered if your buildup is higher than 25%.

After the technician has finished pumping out your trap, they should fill up a FOG report and provide you with a copy. Once the grease trap cleaning procedure is complete, some localities demand that you submit copies of FOG reports, and many providers can accomplish this for you.


A grease trap is an essential element of running a restaurant, and there are methods you can do to reduce FOG. Customers and staff will be happier and more productive if you avoid environmental effects, lengthy cleaning procedures, and additional expenditures. Having a professional pumper regularly check on your grease trap is the best way to prevent problems.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some FAQs related to grease trap cleaning:

1. Is it possible for me to take care of my grease trap?

Remove any remaining FOGs from the grease trap using the shop vacuum for a thorough cleaning. Next, use some elbow grease, a steel pot scrubber, dish soap, and lukewarm water to clean the grease trap and eliminate any lingering smells. The baffles, sides, and lid of the grease trap should be thoroughly cleaned.

2. Exactly how frequently should a grease trap be cleaned?

Depending on use, most grease traps should be cleaned every 1-3 months. The “1/4th rule” might help you figure out how frequently you need to service your grease traps. When the grease trap reaches a fourth of its capacity, it should be cleaned out.

3. In a grease trap, what is going to dissolve the grease?

You may get rid of a grease blockage by adding hot water to the cleaning process.

4. Is vinegar able to break down grease?

Vinegar’s acidity makes it easier to break down fats and greases. A vinegar and water solution sprayed on a smeared cooktop should be scrubbed with soapy water after ten minutes.

5. Is it safe to use Drano in a sewage system?

As a result, commercial kitchen managers must deal with blocked sinks, pipes, and grease traps. Some people use chemicals like Liquid Plumber or Drano to unclog their drains to tackle this issue.

6. If a grease trap isn’t kept clean, what kind of problems may it cause?

If you don’t clean your grease trap regularly, the grease will harden and create a variety of plumbing problems. They might completely clog your drainage system, resulting in overflowing and backup problems in all of your pipes and fixtures. Then there’s that awful odor.

7. What’s the deal with a home’s grease trap?

A grease trap works by reducing the temperature of greasy water that has accumulated in it. Ten to fifteen percent less dense than water, vegetable oils and animal fats are unable to dissolve in water. After the fats, oils, and grease have cooled, they may be separated into discrete layers for simple separation.

8. For what reasons do lint traps fill up?

Failure to remove oil from the first compartment promptly might lead to an overflowing grease trap. You’ll see that the trash from the first container spills over into the second one in this specific case. Even worse, it will choke up both outgoing and incoming lines, making it impossible to communicate.

9. What is the best method for dissolving toughened grease?

Mix 3 teaspoons of baking soda with 1 cup of water and you’re ready to go! Scrub away minor oil stains from hard surfaces such as counters, linoleum, stoves, and even pots and pans with the solution applied to a sponge.

10. Is it possible for baking soda to decrease food?

Allows you to clean without a lot of effort since baking soda neutralizes acids and breaks down oil. To get rid of dried-on food, you may use it as a mild abrasive. You don’t need to turn on your oven after using baking soda to clean it, and you may use it right away.


Your grease trap is an essential component of running your restaurant, and there are actions you can do to reduce the amount of fat, oil, and grease (FOG) in your kitchen. Customers and staff will be happier and more productive if you avoid environmental effects, long cleaning procedures, and additional expenditures. Having a professional pumper come out regularly to check on your grease trap is the best way to prevent problems.

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