Large Grease Interceptors
We can quickly pump and clean any interceptor to the bottom, regardless of size or inflow.
Clearwater Cleanup Company excels at being able to remove all grease and food from very large interceptors. We have pumped interceptors up to 40,000 gallons in size, and we’ve pumped them completely, even when kitchen water was continually flowing into the interceptor.
What makes us different?
Clearwater is able to completely clean large interceptors because we use the best of pumping technology. Since 1995, we have been using Danish dewatering trucks that pump and process grease right on-site.
A conventional pumper pumps until his truck is full, and then he must stop and haul his load to a processing site. We pump until our truck is full, and then we begin processing right on-board our truck. On-site processing gives us the capacity to continue pumping until your trap is completely clean.
How does dewatering work?
- Our dewatering process separates the food and grease solids from the water.
- The condensed solids stay on our truck, where they take up very little room.
- The clear water goes to a separate part of the truck.
- We use the clear water to high-pressure jet the inside of the trap.
- We continue washing and pumping the grease, water and food onto our truck, where it is constantly separated into solids and water.
- When all the grease, food and water has been pumped and processed, we return the clear water to the interceptor and haul away just the solids.
For a more details on the process, please see our page on Portable Sludge Dewatering.
How do we get your interceptor cleaner?
- Others must stop when their truck is full. We can keep pumping until your trap is clean. For really large interceptors, we use additional roll-off dewatering containers.
- We have a high-pressure jetter right on our pump truck, which is not common. We will power-wash the interior walls and fittings to remove sticky grease build-up.
- We keep ahead of inflow because we pump continuously - we do not have to pull off the job and return later for additional loads.
What are the benefits for you?
- Better value- With Clearwater you will get what you‘re paying for - a complete pumping of your interceptor. We don’t leave solids on the bottom, and we don’t promote useless additives.
- Full capacity restored- Your interceptor will have more room for trapping grease and food in the coming months.
- Better maintenance- Because we jet-clean the interior of your interceptor, we can see if there are any missing baffles, tees or fittings that could allow grease to enter your sewer line.
- Fewer sewer back-ups- A well-maintained interceptor with all the fittings and adequate capacity (not more than 1/3 solids) will greatly reduce grease build-up in your sewer lines. Grease is the worst stuff for your pipes because it acts like glue, grabbing food and other debris to clog your lines. If your lines become clogged, dirty sewage water will back out of your interceptor and other drains, possibly closing down your kitchen.
- Less corrosion- If your interceptor is inadequately cleaned, a layer of hard grease will cling to the interior. Old grease becomes very acidic and can actually eat away at your interceptor. Replacing a rotten interceptor is a major disruption and very expensive.
- Save money and protect your reputation- High-quality preventative maintenance, such as Clearwater provides, will save you money in the long run. You can avoid costly back-ups and the unsanitary, unsafe kitchen flooding that can bring Public Health officials to your door step.
Your can rely on Clearwater for all your interceptor and sewer line maintenance.
Clearwater crews are certified for safe entry into interceptors. From the inside, we can handle your difficult cleaning and repair work, such as:
- Deep Cleaning- Interceptors that have been inadequately cleaned in the past have very hard, old grease coating the interior and clogging the cross-over piping. A Clearwater entry crew can remove every bit of this corrosive coating using hand-scraping, high-pressure jetting and vacuum pumping. Your interceptor will get a fresh start at full capacity.
- High-pressure jetting of facility sewer lines from within the interceptor - We also provide line cleaning done from the surface, but sometimes a section of pipe can only be cleaned using the interceptor as access.
- Repairs- If you have missing or broken tees, pipes or baffles, Clearwater can handle all stages of the replacement process: pumping, cleaning, diagnosis, entry into the trap, and repair or replacement of the components.
Clearwater Cleanup Company can help with maintenance all around your facility:
- Pipe and Drain Service- High-pressure cleaning of your sewer lines and drains. This important preventative maintenance will keep your facility running smoothly, avoiding the expense and mess of sewer back-ups.
- Camera & Locating - If you are experiencing a recurring problem with a sewer line, Clearwater can inspect the line using a sewer video camera. The cause of the problem can be determined and resolved once and for all. By tracing the location of the pipe and pinpointing the exact spot where repairs are needed, we can minimize disruption to walls and flooring.
- Lift Stations & Pump Service- Clearwater can pump, clean and repair your lift stations, even those in low-clearance parking garages or several floors underground.
- Sand Trap Service- Disposal of sand trap waste is affected by many disposal regulations. We will take care of sampling, lab-testing and manifesting your sand trap waste. We clean trough drains too.
Clearwater uses composting to recycle your grease trap waste. Almost all of the waste grease that we pump in the central mountain area is taken to Summit County’s High Country Composting facility. Clearwater is able to do this because we dewater the grease and food solids. To learn more about the composting process, please visit our Environmental Protection page.
Is it OK to return water to the interceptor?
Absolutely! The whole purpose of pumping an interceptor is to remove the food at the bottom and the grease floating on top. The water in the interceptor does not cause any problems. In fact, it is good to have a lot of water. Interceptors should be at least two thirds full of water to work correctly.
Is dewatering like “skimming”?
No, what we do is the opposite of skimming. Skimming is taking just a layer of grease off the top and leaving the greasy water and food behind. Clearwater Cleanup pumps all the food, grease and water from your interceptor. The water that is returned to the interceptor afterwards is completely clear of grease and food.
Is it safe to return the water to the interceptor?
Definitely! The water we return to your interceptor is cleaner than the water we took out. That being said, it is still wastewater, and therefore we return it to the interceptor, which is a wastewater fixture.
Is water returned even to tiny traps?
No. We pump out all the water, food and grease as usual, but we do not return any water to indoor traps. The entire contents will be taken away and dewatered later, so that the grease and food solids can be composted.
Why does my grease interceptor always look full?
A grease interceptors will re-fill with water right away (no matter what method is used to pump it) because it is designed to be full of water. Water coming down your sink drains is held in your interceptor like a lake is held by a dam.
The thick layer of water slows down the grease and cools it off so it can coagulate and float to the top. As long as there is enough water, the layer of grease is held up above the outlet tee. Food solids sink to the bottom of the trap. When there is not enough water, the food and grease solids escape into the outlet line and begin to clog your sewer lines.
If my interceptor backs up, does that mean it is full?
Interceptors are always full (see answer to previous question) but they should allow water to flow through to the outlet sewer line. If an interceptor backs up, it is usually because the sewer line downstream is clogged. The water will back up into the interceptor and other drains.
However, a severely neglected interceptor can become packed so solid with grease that water cannot even enter it. The water will back up in the inlet line and come up in the sink.
For more resources and information about grease interceptors, please visit our Education page.