Grease Trap Cleaning Guide

Welcome to Diamondback Plumbing & Cooling’s comprehensive Grease Trap Cleaning Guide. Whether you’re a seasoned professional in the food service industry or just starting out, it is essential to understand that grease trap maintenance is a cornerstone of your business’s operations. 

Regularly servicing your grease trap is critical for compliance with sanitation regulations and ensures a safe and efficient kitchen environment. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the when, why, and how of keeping your grease traps in tip-top condition, highlighting expert tips from our skilled technicians at Diamondback Plumbing & Cooling in Phoenix, Arizona. 

Let’s dive into the world of grease trap service excellence and learn how to keep your establishment running smoothly and safely.

Understanding Grease Traps

A grease trap, also commonly referred to as a grease interceptor, is a crucial part of any commercial kitchen’s wastewater disposal system. Its primary function is to stop fats, oils, and grease (FOG) from the wastewater before they enter the sewer lines. This process prevents blockages and ensures the wastewater system operates efficiently. 

So, how do grease traps work? It’s relatively straightforward. Grease traps work on the principle that FOG is lighter than water and will separate when given time to cool and settle. In a typical setup, wastewater flows into the trap, where the FOG rises to the top and is trapped, while the cleaner water exits the trap and flows into the sewer.

There are several types of grease traps tailored to different needs. The most common types include:

  1. Under-sink traps are compact and suitable for businesses with limited space or lower grease volumes.
  1. High-capacity interceptors are designed for larger establishments that produce significant quantities of FOG.
  2. Automatic grease removal units actively separate and remove the FOG from the water, making them a convenient option for busy operations that require frequent cleaning.

Each type serves the same fundamental purpose but is designed to fit various scales and requirements of restaurant operations. Business owners need to choose the right grease trap to ensure efficient functioning and compliance with regulations while minimizing maintenance frequency and costs.

5 Signs That Your Grease Trap Is Full

Several signs indicate that your grease trap may be full. Some of the most common examples include the following:

Slow Drainage

When your grease trap reaches capacity, one of the earliest signs you may notice is a slowing down of drainage. Sinks and floor drains connected to the trap will take longer to drain, indicating a blockage or obstruction in the system that could be due to accumulated FOG.

Unpleasant Odors

A telltale sign that your grease trap needs attention is the emergence of foul odors. A full trap cannot contain the smell of rotting food waste and grease, so if there’s a persistent bad smell in the area of your grease trap, it’s likely time for a cleaning.

Grease Escaping into Sewer System

If you find evidence of grease in the downstream pipes or, worse, in the sewer system itself, this points to an overfilled grease trap that no longer effectively contains and separates FOG from wastewater.

Poor Kitchen Sanitation

Overflows or backups in your kitchen indicate a grease trap problem. If you are experiencing any backup of wastewater or difficulty maintaining hygiene standards due to grease, it’s a clear sign the trap is full.

Required Maintenance Schedule

If it’s been longer than the recommended duration between maintenance checks, then it’s likely your grease trap is full or close to capacity. Regular inspections and cleanings are essential to prevent reaching a full state.

When to Call Professional Grease Trap Cleaning Services in Phoenix

Maintaining a commercial kitchen isn’t just about serving great food; it also includes proper sanitation practices, which involve regular grease trap cleaning. 

Knowing when to call a professional service in Phoenix is vital for adhering to regulations and ensuring your kitchen’s longevity. It’s important to be proactive; therefore, scheduling professional cleaning services before you hit the legal or recommended thresholds is recommended. 

If you notice any signs, like slow drainage, foul odors, or visible grease in your sewer system, it’s time to call a professional plumber. It may be tempting to push your schedule to the limit, but this can result in emergency situations, interrupting your business operations.

Benefits of Professional Grease Trap Cleaning

Opting for professional cleaning and maintenance services for your grease trap has many benefits. Professional technicians bring expertise and the tools to thoroughly clean and inspect your trap, ensuring that all components are functioning effectively. 

This isn’t just about cleanliness; it also extends the life of your grease trap and can prevent costly breakdowns or unscheduled repairs. Additionally, professional services typically dispose of the grease responsibly, reducing your business’s environmental footprint and ensuring compliance with Waste Management regulations in Phoenix. 

By entrusting this task to professionals, restaurateurs can focus on what they do best — cooking and serving outstanding meals to their guests, knowing that the back end of their operations is in expert hands.


Regular grease trap maintenance is not merely a regulatory obligation—it is a cornerstone of a well-functioning, hygienic commercial kitchen. 

Understanding the types of grease traps available and recognizing the signs of a full trap is integral to avoiding disruptions in your business. Diamondback Plumbing & Cooling offers expert grease trap cleaning services that not only keep your kitchen compliant and efficient but also contribute to a more sustainable environment. 

Don’t wait for an emergency to disrupt your operation. Contact Diamondback Plumbing & Cooling today to schedule your professional grease trap cleaning service and ensure your kitchen continues to run like a well-oiled machine.

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