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How to diagnose common grease trap issues

If you own a café or a restaurant, it is likely that you have grease traps to help safely remove oil and fat from the building. Grease traps can be used to remove solid and liquid fats from the wastewater in your restaurant, meaning that fat and grease doesn’t enter the drainage system. This reduces the chance of a pipe blockage – but it is important to be able to diagnose common grease trap issues if you want to make sure your grease traps are working properly.

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Here are a few tips to help you diagnose common grease trap problems.

A clog in the incoming line

A clog in the incoming pipe could easily cause the lowest plumbing pipes and drains in the restaurant to become clogged and backed up. If there is also a backed up sink, this could indicate that the branch line is clogged as well, so this will need cleaning out too. You can avoid problems like this by making sure that you clean your grease traps at least once every three months.

A clog in the outgoing line

If the outgoing pipe is clogged, it is likely that the grease trap will start to overflow from both compartments. You can prevent this from happening in the future by making sure that you always pump waste on cycle.

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A clog in the crossover

A clog in the crossover can occur if fat, grease or debris start to build up in the crossover line. If this becomes clogged, the liquid level in the first compartment may be too high, while the second level will be normal. You may also encounter water overflow in the first compartment, but this isn’t always the case.

A full grease trap clog

A full grease trap clog isn’t ideal, and this will occur if the grease has not been properly removed from the main compartment. This causes the grease to spill over into the second compartment, clogging the crossover and both lines. You can find out if the trap is full by using a pole to work out how deep the grease is – if it reaches the bottom, it is full.

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