What Does a Grease Trap Do, and Does My Business Really Need One?

March 23, 2022

Many commercial and residential facilities utilize different waste protection items to minimize stains and other problems and keep a building safe. For example, grease traps do more than collect grease and can protect businesses from grave dangers. But does your business need one? Well, that’s an excellent question, and this fun and informative article will tell you all you need to know.

What is a Grease Trap?

A grease trap is a cute little collection container with an ugly job: collect all of the cooking grease produced in a kitchen. They connect directly to your kitchen wastewater sources and gather grease and fatty waste (like bacon runoff) to keep it from getting into the sewer. Most grease traps have two chambers: one that captures the oil and a second that lets clean water flow into your system.

What happens in that first chamber? Nothing too pretty: the hot grease collected here solidifies into very gross gunk that would clog up your facility’s pipes and sewage system over time. So, why do most restaurants have grease traps? To ensure that their water runs smoothly and minimize backups and other sewage problems. However, there are also legal ramifications for not having a grease trap.

For example, restaurants and other food-related businesses must follow their state’s Fats, Oils, and Grease or FOG rules and regulations. These guidelines dictate how companies handle their excessive greases, fats, and oil, and failure to follow these rules could result in expensive fines. But, more importantly, these traps help prevent sewage overflows and minimize your business’ risk of severe damage.

Does Your Business Need One?

Not every business will need a grease trap to operate smoothly. However, any facility that creates food-related grease needs grease traps throughout their facility. Even non-food companies with employee kitchens may need grease traps to prevent sewage contamination and backups. So what businesses can have a grease trap built for them? Here are a few:

  • Restaurants of any kind, especially those that deep fry
  • Bakeries and cafes with on-site baking
  • Any mall with extensive food courts
  • Food manufacturing and packaging companies
  • Universities, colleges, and schools
  • Food trucks, especially those with deep fryers
  • Healthcare facilities, like hospitals and nursing homes
  • Companies with catering services
  • Convenience stores with food options

Grease traps can attach to various devices, including rinse sinks, floor drains, food prep sinks, food storage areas, pot sinks, deep fryers, ovens, and stovetops. The type you purchase will vary based on your company, as you may need one for your office kitchen.

Identifying the Best Grease Trap Option

Well, now that you know all about grease traps, do you need one for your business? Talk to your local FOG officials to see what they think. We strongly suggest getting one if you work with food in your business. Otherwise, you might have a high plumbing repair bill and sewage running all over your facility and its floor.

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Safeway Used Oil and Grease