Plumbing issues can cause headaches and major hits to the wallet for restaurant owners. The key plumbing problems in restaurants are caused by the clogging of pipes, which makes the plumbing back up, overflow and not drain properly. The main cause of this issue is staff members putting leftover food and other materials down the drains instead of disposing of it in the correct place. As a professional plumber working with restaurants for over 20 years, here are a few of the areas I think you should focus on to keep your plumbing system running properly.
Maintaining Your Dishwashing Station
The dishwashing station is where most restaurant plumbing issues occur. Often the servers do not properly clean the plates of leftover food, straws, and napkins before handing them to the dishwasher. The dishwasher then sprays the plates off into the sink and all of the food and other material slips down the drain causing it to backup.
Training the servers to dispose of leftover items into the garbage properly is the first step needed to stop plumbing issues from happening. As a backup, a simple way to keep this from happening is by using wire mesh. Cut a small piece of wire mesh, the same used in window or door screens, and placing it over the drain will stop a majority of materials from being flushed down the drain. The mesh can be easily removed and cleaned. Using this simple and inexpensive piece of mesh can save restaurant owners a lot of money in plumbing bills over time.
Keep Bar Drains Clean
More often than not the pipes behind the bar will become clogged. Bartenders push leftover lime wedges, cherry stems, orange peels, and other cocktail-making materials down the drain instead of throwing them away in the trash can. When rinsing out the bar drain, the materials slip down the holes and cause the backup of the plumbing system.
Managers need to train bartenders and bar backs to properly dispose of materials into the trash can to keep the bar system’s plumbing from backing up. Wire mesh can also be used here as a simple solution.
Properly Clean Your Fryers
The final area that needs attention are the fryers used in kitchens. These need to be pulled out, drained, and cleaned on a daily basis. Many times, when the employees pull these fryers out from the wall, the gas lines attached to them can begin to loosen. This can become a dangerous situation if the gas lines become unattached and begin to leak gas into the air. With all the fire and sparks that happen in the kitchen, this is a problem you want to avoid.
The employees responsible for cleaning the fryers need to be taught the proper way to handle the machines. They also need to be aware of the dangers associated with the gas lines becoming loose.
Training the staff to dispose of food correctly will help stop a majority of plumbing issues. Also, teaching the employees responsible for the fryers how to clean the machines will ease many headaches for bar owners and also save a lot of money in the long run.