Finding Solutions, Delivering Compliance

Grease Trap Cleaning For Commercial Kitchens

21/01/2022
Grease Trap Cleaning For Commercial Kitchens
Grease trap cleaning is a vital part of grease management and environmental management in commercial kitchens. Grease traps are designed to capture grease and other fats, oils, and fatty materials that come from the kitchen before they can be released into our sewer system - but if grease traps aren't properly maintained or cleaned regularly, blockages may form over time which could lead to a sewage back-up, a grease spill, or even a devastating fire. To avoid this happening, it's important for restaurant owners to find a reputable, specialist service provider like VSS who will professionally clean their grease trap on a regular basis so they can keep their business safe, clean, and profitable!

Why do you need to have your kitchen's grease trap cleaned?

Grease traps for commercial kitchens help to control grease and stop it from entering the sewage waterway, where it can cause all kinds of problems, but they need to be cleaned regularly or there's a risk of blockages or spills. Blockages can cause sewage overflows which pollutes other waterways and could threaten public health with dangerous pathogens like norovirus – not to mention the potential damage that a sewage backup could do to your business.

There is a greater threat than that, however, which is this- grease traps can cause grease fires. Grease is highly flammable and can burn even on top of water, and if it's not removed regularly, the risk of fire increases.

So how often should you have your grease trap cleaned? The Environment Agency recommend that grease traps are inspected every month for heavy usage premises (restaurants with more than 20 covers), or at least every three months for low usage premises (small cafes or restaurants). Grease traps must also be completely emptied and thoroughly cleaned at least once a year to conform to these standards.

What happens if you don't have your grease trap cleaned?

As we mentioned above, there are a myriad of hazards associated with ignoring your grease traps. If you don't get your grease trap regularly cleared, small “fatberg”-like blockages could occur which can cause sewage overflows in the surrounding area, biohazardous grease spills around the grease trap, and even fires!

A grease spill can also lead to larger environmental problems like water pollution. When grease from commercial premises overflows into our waterways, the consequences can be dire for aquatic life as these organisms can't survive these freshly polluted waters.

To avoid these risks and to keep your restaurant or commercial kitchen safe, you should make sure that you get your grease trap cleaned regularly by a professional service provider. Plus, if it's heavily used over the course of a day, then grease traps must be inspected monthly by an expert grease trap cleaning service, and cleaned to a professional standard to prevent damaging and costly disruptions to your business.

What makes grease fires so dangerous?

Grease fires are extremely dangerous due to a number of factors –

1. Grease is highly flammable and can easily ignite, resulting in a fire that starts and spreads very, very quickly. This makes it difficult to contain or control.

2. Grease is a hydrophobic material, which doesn’t mix with water. This means that any attempts to put the grease fire out with water or fire sprinklers will likely just cause the fire to splash around or "explode" due to the cold water, resulting in it spreading much more violently.

3. Grease is a liquid and behaves like a liquid even when on fire, which makes it more difficult to predict or contain it.

4. Grease burns at extremely high temperatures, causing the surroundings to ignite readily.
It is estimated that every year grease fires cause millions of pounds worth of damage - up to £80 million by some estimates – so this is a real threat to your business and the lives of your staff and customers.

Grease trap cleaning helps to prevent grease blockages, grease spills and grease fires by removing grease before it has a chance to build up in your sewers or traps, and it is one of the most important proactive steps that you as a business owner can take to protect your business from the threat of grease fire.

Commercial grease trap cleaning from VSS

To keep your kitchen grease trap and commercial kitchen safe and free of blockages, spills or grease fires you should commit to a regular professional cleaning regime – to arrange one quickly and easily, get in touch with VSS today. As a leading national ventilation, fire safety and grease  management company we can help to ensure that your grease traps are serviced regularly by professional technicians who understand the risks associated with blockages and will clean them to recommended grease trap cleaning standards.

Can VSS train my in-house staff to maintain our grease traps?

It may make more sense for you to maintain your grease traps for your commercial kitchen in-house, in which case we at VSS can train your existing staff so that they are able to clean your grease traps to a professional standard. We will also make your staff more aware of the health risks associated with blocked kitchen grease traps. We will give you (or your designated staff member) all the necessary documentation allowing your Company to demonstrate that grease traps have been serviced and cleaned by a trained professional, thus your business will still able to meet all necessary regulations.

Have you got a plan in place for managing your kitchen grease traps? Are grease traps part of your kitchen waste management plan? If not, it's time to get in touch with us at VSS today.

We’ll be happy to help with whatever aspect of your grease trap management you need, from professional cleaning services and kitchen extraction cleaning to training for your staff members so they can help you run a cleaner, safer and more effective kitchen. Whatever you need, we’d love to hear from you.