When you run a food service business such as a hotel, restaurant or even a small food cafe – you at some point will find yourself seeking an answer to the question – “how often should grease traps be cleaned?”.


Getting a grease trap cleaned is one of those necessary evils in life – but like getting your car serviced on a regular basis – it will save you money and hassle in the long run – and ensure no disruption to your business activities.


What happens when a grease trap is cleaned?


You will of course know that a grease trap is basically a box of water – that filters and collects grease, food particles and oils etc from food production when they go down the sink.


This is important because – in a busy restaurant – the high amounts of oils and fats that go down the sink in liquid form could harden and cause a blockage either in your plumbing – or in the municipal piping system.


A regular clean will see the oils, fats etc be sucked out and the trap will function normally.


About Waster


Waster.com.au provides all waste and recycling services required by small and medium Aussie companies such as grease trap cleaning (liquid waste services), general waste bins or any recycling services.


We provide all services on flexible 30 day, month to month agreements – so you do not need to worry about being locked into a long term contract.


To arrange grease trap cleaning for your business – you can simply check pricing etc online and book here:


How often should grease traps be cleaned?


Fundamentally – the answer to how often should grease traps be cleaned is however often the local water authority tells you!


In each metro region of Australia – the local water authority will set a frequency based on a number of factors that we will cover below. Depending on where your business is located – you will need to keep records and evidence that the grease interceptor has been pumped out / cleaned in accordance with this schedule.


For example – in metro Sydney, Sydney Water is the authority who sets the trap cleaning schedule.


If you do not comply with this schedule you will be fined.


What factors determine how often should grease traps be cleaned?


The factors that determine the required schedule include:


Type of business – the water authority will take into account what sort of business you operate i.e., what kind of food you serve and how large your business is.


What size of trap you have installed – grease traps can range in size from really small under sink units of c.60 litres up to 5000 litres or larger. Basically – the larger the trap, the longer it will take to get filled up.


For example – a small cafe with a 5000 litre trap may only require service every six months – but a large restaurant with a 1000 litre grease trap may need cleaning every month.


Many cafes and pizza shops for example – have a standard 1000 litre grease trap and have services every 3 months.


Can I change the frequency if I think it is to often?


If you think the water authority has mandated a cleaning schedule that is too frequent – you can contact them and explain why you think it should be changed.


How often should grease traps be cleaned Australia


This could save you significant amounts of money.


Is there anything else I should know?


If you are thinking of installing a grease trap in your new business – you should carefully consider the size.


Going for too small a trap will mean that you need to get it serviced every few weeks – and this can be a real nuisance – i.e. especially if the trap is inside.


Also – getting too large a trap could cost you money – as most water authorities will have a cleaning at least once every six months.


As a grease trap cleaning company like Waster will charge based on litres – this could work out more expensive.




The number one rule as regards “how often should grease traps be cleaned” is just to comply with the schedule set by your local water authority.


Trying to self monitor or guess when it needs to be cleaned is not really possible – as a trap will always be full of liquid and could be blocked inside.


Check out a video below of a clean up after a grease trap over-spill: