What is a Grease Trap?
Passive grease traps date back to 1885 when the first US patent was issued. Today's large and small grease traps use the same basic operating design as the 1885 model. While they do a fine job trapping grease, removing the grease is a task left to the owner. If the trap is a small passive trap, it must be cleaned out by hand. If the grease trap is of the large, pre-cast concrete variety, it must be pumped out by a professional with a vacuum or pump truck. The single most important aspect to understand is that, as a grease trap fills, its separation efficiency diminishes. When a trap is filled to capacity with retained grease/oils, there is no separation occurring and the trap no longer works. Since grease and oils fill a grease trap from the top down, it is frequently hard to measure the depth or fullness of the grease trap, making it difficult to know when it needs to be cleaned. Failure to clean the grease trap in time creates a considerable volume of business for pipe cleaners, and headaches for sewer systems and septic fields.
If the grease trap is a Big Dipper Automatic Grease Removal System, the grease and oils are skimmed out automatically using a timer or sensor mechanism. The automatic grease removal process takes place daily in the case of timer-based systems and before the trap is 10 percent full in sensor-based systems. This automatic grease removal process relieves the owner of the burden of measuring grease levels and either hand scooping grease out of small passive traps or paying grease trap cleaning services to clean large traps