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What kind of grease interceptor do I need?

What kind of grease interceptor do I need?

December 18, 2023

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You’re tasked with getting a new grease interceptor, but there’s one problem: You don’t know where to start. There are many considerations, like size, material, and type. It may seem like you have more questions than answers. If this is you, keep reading!

Grease Interceptor Sizing

The first question you should solve is what size grease interceptor you need. This will help you determine other important aspects of your new grease interceptor, like where it will be installed and how often it should be cleaned out. You should conduct a right sizing calculation whether you are installing a brand new unit or replacing an old one. 

Many plumbing codes focus on either flow rate or liquid volume to size a grease interceptor, which can lead to undersizing or oversizing. Schier uses both criteria to determine the capacity of the interceptor and its recommended pump-out frequency. A correctly sized grease interceptor reduces maintenance costs for restaurants as well as the chance of a messy and costly clog/backup. Learn more about right sizing

Grease Monkey™

Schier’s free grease interceptor sizing application can help you find the right unit with just a few key details about your facility. Get started HERE. 

Types and Materials of Grease Interceptors

There are several different types of grease interceptors on the market today. Some options come with a lower price tag because they are made of cheaper and corrosive materials like steel or concrete. These units will ultimately fail and will need to be replaced. This can impose major unplanned costs to the restaurant owner in the forms of municipal fines for health and pretreatment ordinance violations, line-jetting, increased pump-outs, significant tearout and replacement costs, and restaurant downtime. In extreme cases, a failed grease interceptor can put a restaurant out of business!

Animal fats, dairy, sugars, salts and all other food waste decay overtime in a grease interceptor, creating hydrogen sulfide gas that eats away at steel and concrete grease interceptors from the inside out. For decades, large concrete tanks have been the most common grease interceptor in the industry. These units are guaranteed to fail and offer zero performance ratings. The average lifespan of a concrete grease interceptor is 10 years. Steel grease interceptors are often used for smaller, indoor applications and have an average lifespan of five years.

Why Choose a Schier Grease Interceptor?

All Schier grease interceptors are made out of corrosion resistant polyethylene and carry a lifetime warranty. Polyethylene is a rugged material that is heavy duty enough to withstand weather and traffic, while remaining lightweight for ease of mobility. Our tanks and covers are molded in the Midwest with American-made resins from our trusted suppliers, a testament to the quality of the products.

Furthermore, Schier’s Great Basin™ line of hydromechanical grease interceptors are tested and certified to the ASME A112.14.3-2018 standard, which lays out a uniform method of testing to determine maximum grease capacity at a certified flow rate in gallons per minute (GPM).

Hydromechanical grease interceptors vs. gravity grease interceptors

What’s the difference?

Traditionally, hydromechanical grease interceptors are performance rated and can range in size from small, under-counter units to larger indoor/outdoor units. Gravity grease interceptors are not performance rated and range in size from 500 gallons to 3,000 gallons. 

Key differences between hydromechanical and gravity grease interceptors:

Schier’s GB-1000 and GB-1500 are dual certified as both hydromechanical and gravity grease interceptors - the first and only dual-certified 1,000-gallon and 1,500-gallon units in the industry. Learn more.

Common Questions

When do I need a solids interceptor?

Solids interceptors are recommended when required by jurisdictional code, or in situations where an unusually high amount of solid kitchen waste is anticipated. Schier Great Basin™ indoor/outdoor models (GB-50 and larger) have a built-in solids capacity of up to 25%, which should sufficiently capture any solids that go down the kitchen drain lines. However, if additional capacity is needed or a solids interceptor is required, Schier offers a line of Billy Goat solids interceptors

Schier Billy Goat Solids InterceptorsShould I install my grease interceptor inside or outside?

The answer goes back to right sizing. When a grease interceptor is sized correctly, you can determine the appropriate space in which your unit should be installed. If an outdoor installation is not feasible, as is often the case with historic buildings or installations in dense urban areas, then a smaller unit with a more frequent pump-out service may be considered. 

How do I choose which cover I need?

The pedestrian-rated composite cover is recommended for indoor or above grade installations. The cast iron cover is recommended for outdoor, buried installations. Learn more.

What accessories do I need?

An interceptor can be installed indoors or outdoors, above ground or buried below ground, suspended (supported by trapeze) or on the floor, and other unique installation scenarios. The list goes on and on, and different accessories are required for different situations. The Schier website goes beyond offering interceptor-to-accessory compatibility. Our online shopping experience helps you find the right accessories (and the right number of accessories) to go with your unique installation situation.

You’re ready to find your grease interceptor!

A few reminders: 

  • Streamline your grease interceptor search by starting with the Grease Monkey™ sizing app to find the right fit for your situation.

  • Always use a licensed plumber for any installation or maintenance needs and, as best practice, check with your jurisdiction about unique code requirements.

  • If you have any questions along the way, our team is happy to assist you. Contact us at or (913) 951-3399.

What kind of grease interceptor do I need?

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