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Understanding your plumbing inspector's view

Beakers of clean and dirty waterDon’t accuse a plumbing inspector (PI) of blindly following a bloated set of bureaucratic rules for no good reason. Yes, a plumbing inspector’s job is to enforce the plumbing code. Yes, a plumbing inspector will likely be suspicious of anything that deviates from that code.

But plumbing inspectors have good reasons for following the plumbing code (and so do you). In fact, good plumbing inspectors can help you, your business and your community by preventing long-term problems. Here's how they approach the job.

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Big Dipper digital control optimized for rotisserie ovens

Rotisserie chickenCommercial rotisserie ovens, which are popping up in more grocery stores as well as some restaurants and institutional settings, bring with them some unusual challenges when it comes to managing grease. Seasonal fluctuations in demand for rotisserie-cooked poultry pose some unusual challenges for grease removal, which a new Big Dipper feature resolves. 

(Photo courtesy of Steve Parker / Creative Commons on Flickr)

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New Big Dipper Digital Control Increases Life, Improves User Experience

Big Dipper Push Button InterfaceIn the three decades since Thermaco developed the innovative Big Dipper grease interceptor, more than 33,000 units have been installed in commercial kitchens around the world. 

Thermaco is also focused on continuing to innovate, and we’re proud to announce the new and improved 40000 Series Big Dipper with digital control. We know a food service establisment's priorities for a grease interceptor are simple: efficient operation, minimal maintenance, and compliance.

The 40000 Series Big Dipper with a new digital control unit is designed to help accomplish all those goals.

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Six ways your commercial kitchen might be out of compliance

Chef and Waiter discussing menu

You always score a solid "A" during health department inspections.

You make sure your fire extinguishers and other safety gear is regularly inspected.

And if something goes wrong with a piece of equipment, you immediately call a service technician and get it fixed.

While you may think you’re doing everything you could, and everything you should, to keep your commercial kitchen in compliance with government regulations, there are still a few surprises that could trip you up.

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How to size a grease trap for a commercial kitchen

Kitchen Drain CloseupWhether it’s a small, neighborhood pizza place or a large, institutional cafeteria that runs 24/7, installing the correctly sized grease trap is critical.

Install a unit that’s too small, and you risk overflows and messy back-ups in the kitchen. Install a unit (or units) that are too large, though, and you’ll end up with a different kind of waste – money flushed down the drain.

However, the methods used in many plumbing codes to estimate grease trap size requirements tend to overestimate peak flow, and therefore can overestimate the unit capacity needed. 

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Welcome to the New Thermaco Website

Image of New Thermaco HomepageWhy we redesigned the Thermaco website

We built Thermaco on innovation — the idea that we could figure out a way to manage fats, oil and grease from commercial kitchens better than the industry had before. 

So when we decided this year that it was time to give our website a facelift, we took the same innovation-first approach. Though we wanted to update the look and feel of the site, we also wanted the site to be a better resource for customers and others seeking information.

To that end, the new site has several changes:

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How to Calculate the Total Cost of Ownership of a Grease Trap

Messy Grease TrapIf you’re about to purchase a new grease trap you need to consider more than just the initial cost of the unit.

Like any piece of industrial equipment, grease traps have costs that go far beyond the initial capital cost. In fact, over a period of many years, capital costs are likely to make up just a small percentage of the total cost of ownership for a grease interceptor.

Grease trap and grease interceptor costs fall into three categories:

Initial purchase cost

Initial purchase costs will depend on several factors, including how large a unit you need, whether you need multiple units and the type you choose.

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Trapzilla, A Thermaco Technology, making a difference in worldwide effort to deliver clean water

Mexico CityASHEBORO, N.C. — Water runs from our taps, and we store it in bottles, coolers and refrigerators.
 
Clean, cool and crisp. We take it for granted.
 
Much of the world isn’t so fortunate.
 
While the world population has tripled in the 20th century, the use of renewable water resources has grown six-fold according to water.org, which works to promote clean water sources throughout the world.
 
Thermaco, a leader in the highly specialized field of oil and grease extraction from wastewater, considers this to be an important part of its mission.
 
“Thermaco strives to make relevant products for water pretreatment that enable food service providers to be better stewards of the sewer collection systems of which they are a part,” says Yaralitza A. Erives, Director of Customer Service and Sales at Thermaco.

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Alpha Biofuels - Offering a Clean Solution to Growth in Singapore

Alpha BioFuelsSingapore –- the East Asian city-state –- is known worldwide as a leader in urban cleanliness and environmental stewardship. Visitors to Singapore discover a bustling multicultural metropolis where towering skyscrapers soar above charming British colonial architectural, and where an abundance of tourist sites, glamorous shopping centers, and food courts buzz with activity seven days a week. As one of the world’s most densely populated metropolitan areas, both the government and citizens of Singapore are proud of the nation’s leadership in urban efficiency, quality of life, and environmentalism.

 

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Suggestions for Reducing Detergent/Lipid Emulsions:

Commercial Kitchen DishwasherKeep Soapy flows from Contacting Downstream Fats and Oils (Lipids)

A commercial dishwasher’s output is hot, soapy water and is ALWAYS running richer than needed in terms of detergent chemicals. Why?  Because it is a far lesser evil to send unused detergent (high in BOD) with sanitizers (chlorides) and water softening agents (a variety of mineral grabbing stuff so as to leave no spots on the washed ware) THAN to have a potential sanitary hazard imposed on the community’s dining customers, i.e. dirty dishes.  Sending a commercial dishwasher’s output through the kitchen’s drainage plumbing emulsifies any and all fats or oils in its route, including the retained grease and oils in a conventional downstream grease separator.  Notice the wording “conventional”.  Anytime a warm (usually no longer hot by that time) soapy flow enters a conventional (think traditional inlet and outlet configuration), it rises “lava lamp” style and displaces the cold water already in the separator.  As the cold water layer falls, it tugs on the underside of the trapped grease mat, adding some gentle mixing action.

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