Food trucks have been a growing trend in the most recent years, with many small independent entrepreneurs and cooks trying out this lower-cost niche instead of a traditional restaurant. A food truck isn’t just somewhere you cook food: it’s a kitchen. As such it contains all the things you need in a sanitary kitchen – including the kitchen sink. In a normal restaurant kitchen, that water would need to be filtered before it hits the sewer through a grease trap or grease interceptor. But do you need a grease trap for your food truck?
Understanding the Grey Water Tank
A food truck and an RV share a lot in common: they have both have running water, and they both produce waste water. This waste water is stored in a large tank in the undercarriage of the vehicle known as the “gray water tank.” Just like the waste water from any restaurant kitchen, this water is a combination of FOGS (Fats, Oils, Grease, and Solids), water, usually chlorine or some other sanitation fluid, and whatever that fluid couldn’t kill. This is not just water you can pour down the storm drain: as part of running your restaurant, you have to properly treat this water.
Emptying Out the Grey Water Tank
This water needs to be treated before it’s introduced into the sewer. If you were to simply empty this out, say at the storm drain next to your home, it would start to clog those pipes. If you’re caught, or the clog is tracked to you, you’re looking at stiff fines and a revoked license for your truck. Depending on your area, you usually have several options:
- Installing a Grease Trap: Installing a trap between the drain and the gray water tank can significantly cut down on clogs, and make it easier to drain.
- Grey Water Haulers: Depending on your area, you may be able to get a truck to come by to drain into.
- Commissary or Food Truck Center: In cities where food trucks are more popular, here are commissaries available to park and maintain trucks after work. Likewise, you can rent a stationary spot with hookups for draining into a grease interceptor.
WVO: Recycling Fryer Oil
Another thing to think about is if you use a deep dryer in your truck, you should also not be dumping that oil. Dumping your fryer oil isn’t only illegal, it’s also very damaging on the waste water infrastructure of your city (we’ve got the stories to prove it). Instead, think about selling it to a recycler. This Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO) can be used in many things, from soaps to biodiesel. Learn more about how to sell WVO here.
At Food Grease Trappers, we help keep restaurants moving, regardless of if they have wheels. From pumping to troubleshooting, we can help kitchens better dispose of their grease and produce less of it to start. We also have a green WVO program. Contact us today.