Grease traps are a vital part of the food industry as they help keep the kitchen clean and free of grease and contaminants. Grease traps work by capturing grease and other contaminants from wastewater before it is released into the sewer system.
This helps keep the kitchen clean and odor free and also helps protect the drain system from clogging and other damage.
How Much Does Grease Trap Cleaning Cost?
You should plan on spending anywhere between $120 and $1,100 to pump a grease pump. At the lower price range, you will find the small indoor 20-to-30-gallon under-sink grease traps which are pumped out on a high frequency every 14 to 28 days, while at the higher price range, you’ll see the largest possible grease traps, with a capacity of 5,000 gallons, that haven’t been pumped in years and are out of compliance. It takes around 20 minutes to clean a small trap, while a large trap would take a worker two to four hours to clean.
One of the most important factors that affect the cost of grease cleaning a trap is the place where it is located, whether it is underground, outside of the building, or inside the building.
The cost of cleaning indoor grease interceptors
Most indoor grease traps have a capacity of 30 to 200 gallons and the cost of cleaning these types of traps is anywhere between $130 and $200, as long as the service is continuously provided.
The cost for only “one-off” pumping would be anywhere between $200 and $250 because the first pumping is the costliest for the hauler. The reasons are that is hard for them to find a trap, they must work you into their invoicing system and they have a deal with a bigger quantity of solid concentration in a trap that hasn’t been cleaned for a long time.
It is recommended to sign an ongoing service agreement with an experienced hauler. This way you can be sure that you will get a lower price per cleaning, you will not interrupt your activity due to overflows and backups and you will stay in compliance.
The cost of cleaning outdoor grease interceptors
You most probably have a large outdoor grease trap if you are in a building that is located in a very dense area like the downtown of the city or if the building is more than 25 years old. But if it was built ten to twenty years ago, you usually have a 1,000 gallons grease trap while buildings built within the last ten years have a 1500 gallons grease trap.
The size of a grease trap also depends on the square footage of the restaurant, the municipality of the restaurant, and whether the original restaurant used takeout or their own plates to serve food.
In order to find the size of your grease trap, you should look at the plumbing schematics of your building or the papers from your last pumping.
Expect to pay anywhere between $240 and $330 per pumping for cleaning a 1000 to 1500 gallons grease trap, taking into consideration that you signed an ongoing contract with a reputable grease hauler.
Of course, a “one-off” pumping will be more expensive. The sizes for twenty percent of outdoor grease traps are 2,500, 2,000, 3,500, or 5,000 gallons, while eighty percent of outdoor grease traps can be 1,000 gallons or 1,500 gallons.
Other factors that influence the cost of cleaning a grease trap
The cost of cleaning a small indoor grease trap will be affected (increased) by some other factors such as:
- if the hauler truck will not be able to park near the place where the grease trap is located, the hauler needs to bring more than 75 feet of hose to reach the trap;
- if the grease trap wasn’t pumped in a very long time, the hauler needs more time to clean it;
- if the grease trap is located on a second floor or in a basement, a mobile vac will be required to service the trap (interceptor);
- emergency call-ins, when the grease trap has to be pumped in the next twenty-four hours;
- if an exact service time is requested.
How can I save money?
The cost of cleaning a grease trap can be offset if you bundle this service with the collection of used cooking oil. You can get a reduced price for grease trap pumping if your restaurant produces used cooking oil and you work with a company that both cleans grease traps and collects used cooking oil.