Grease traps or a grease interceptors are designed to prevent fats, oils, and grease from from leaving a kitchen facility and entering the sewer system. A grease trap is typically located under the sink or other kitchen fixture where it is connected. A grease interceptor is a buried vault with a minimum capacity of 1,000 gallons located on the exterior of the building.
How a grease trap works
Baffles inside the trap slow the wastewater down long enough for the grease to separate and rise to the surface. The grease can then be removed and disposed of properly. Passive traps must be cleaned manually, which is a dirty and smelly job. Electro-mechanical devices require less manual maintenance, and are more efficient because accumulated fats, oils, and grease are automatically removed daily.
To clean a grease trap, pump out accumulated grease with a shop vacuum and then use hot, soapy water to clean it thoroughly. Clean under-sink grease traps every 30 days.
How a grease interceptor works
An interceptor vault includes a minimum of two compartments. Flow passes through a configuration of pipe fittings designed to allow for settling solids and retaining grease. The capacity of the interceptor provides adequate resting time so that the wastewater has time to cool, allowing grease to separate and rise to the surface, where it accumulates until the interceptor is cleaned.
Cleaning a grease interceptor is very hard and dirty work and carries a potential for spills. A good option is to hire a service provider to do this job. We recommend that businesses follow an automated, routine maintenance schedule, every 30 to 90 days.