Grease Trap Basics: Installation, Maintenance, and Correct Disposal

At Clarence Valley Septics, we understand the importance of a well-maintained grease trap for any commercial kitchen. A functioning grease trap plays a crucial role in preventing blockages and protecting the wider sewage system, and in this article, we’ll delve into the fundamentals of grease traps, covering installation, cleaning, and the correct disposal of grease trap waste.

What is a Grease Trap?

A grease trap is a plumbing fixture typically installed below commercial kitchen sinks or drains. It acts as a physical barrier, separating fats, oils, and grease (FOG) from wastewater before it enters the sewer system. FOG can solidify and cause blockages in pipes, leading to inconvenient and costly disruptions, and a grease trap allows FOG to cool and solidify, collecting it within the trap for later removal.

Why is a Grease Trap Important?

There are several key reasons why grease traps are essential for commercial kitchens:

  • Prevents Blockages: As mentioned, FOG build-up can solidify within pipes, causing blockages that disrupt operations and require expensive plumbing services. A well-maintained grease trap prevents these blockages, ensuring a smooth-flowing drainage system.
  • Protects the Environment: FOG can harm the environment by disrupting natural bacterial processes in sewage treatment plants, and by trapping FOG before it enters the sewer system, grease traps play a vital role in protecting our waterways.
  • Complies with Regulations: Many local councils in Australia have regulations mandating the installation and proper maintenance of grease traps in commercial kitchens. Clarence Valley Septics can advise you on the specific regulations applicable to your location.

Grease Trap Installation

The installation of a grease trap should be undertaken by a licensed professional who can ensure that the trap is appropriately sized and positioned for your specific kitchen’s needs. Here are some factors to consider during installation:

  • Size: Selecting the right size grease trap is crucial. A trap that is too small will fill up too quickly, while one that is too large can be inefficient and take up unnecessary space. The size required depends on factors such as the volume of FOG produced by your kitchen and the frequency of planned cleaning.
  • Location: Grease traps are typically installed underground outside the building, close to the kitchen drain. The location should be easily accessible for cleaning and maintenance purposes.
  • Flow Rate: The trap’s flow rate should be sufficient to handle the volume of wastewater generated by your kitchen.

Grease Trap Cleaning

Regular cleaning is essential for optimal performance of your grease trap, and the frequency of cleaning depends on the size of your trap, the volume of FOG produced by your kitchen, and local regulations. A general recommendation is to schedule professional grease trap cleaning every 3-6 months. Here’s what a professional cleaning service typically entails:

  • Pumping: The remaining FOG and wastewater are pumped out of the trap by a vacuum truck.
  • Cleaning: The interior of the trap is thoroughly cleaned to remove any FOG residue.
  • Disposal: The collected FOG waste is transported by a licensed liquid waste company like ourselves for proper disposal.

Grease Trap Disposal

Grease trap waste disposal is a critical step in the grease trap maintenance process, as improper disposal of FOG waste can have serious environmental consequences. We recommend partnering with a reputable liquid waste company like Clarence Valley Septics that adheres to all environmental regulations.

Here are some key considerations for grease trap waste disposal:

  • Licensed Disposal: Only licensed liquid waste companies are authorised to transport and dispose of FOG waste. We possess the necessary permits and equipment to handle the waste safely and responsibly.
  • Documentation: Ensure that you receive proper documentation from the liquid waste company that services your grease trap, confirming the collection and disposal of your grease trap waste. This documentation is important for record-keeping purposes and demonstrating compliance with local regulations.

Clarence Valley Septics: Your Partner in Grease Trap Maintenance

At Clarence Valley Septics, we offer comprehensive grease trap services for commercial kitchens. Our services include:

  • Grease Trap Cleaning: We offer scheduled and emergency grease trap cleaning services, ensuring your trap is properly maintained and functioning optimally.
  • Grease Trap Disposal: We are a licensed liquid waste company and will ensure the safe and environmentally responsible disposal of your FOG waste.

We understand the importance of a well-maintained grease trap for your business, and our team is committed to providing reliable and efficient services that keep your kitchen running smoothly and in compliance with all regulations. Contact us today for a free consultation on your grease trap needs. We’ll be happy to answer any questions that you may have and help you develop a personalised grease trap maintenance plan.

Additional Tips for Grease Trap Maintenance

Here are some additional tips to help you maintain your grease trap effectively:

  • Employee Training: Train your kitchen staff on proper grease disposal practices. This includes avoiding pouring FOG down the drain and using grease traps correctly.
  • Scrape, Don’t Pour: Always scrape food scraps and FOG into a bin before washing dishes to minimise the amount entering the drain.
  • Regular Monitoring: Visually inspect your grease trap regularly to check for any blockages or overflowing issues.
  • Maintain Records: Keep records of your grease trap cleaning and disposal services, including the dates, quantities removed, and the disposal company used.

By implementing these practices and partnering with Clarence Valley Septics for professional maintenance, you can ensure your grease trap functions optimally, protecting your plumbing, the environment, and your business.

Contact Clarence Valley Septics Today

For a free consultation or to learn more about our grease trap services, contact us today on 02 6645 3100 or send us an email at: We’re here to help you maintain a healthy and compliant kitchen environment.

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