Choosing a grease collector is like choosing a food purveyor. A bad choice can negatively impact the quality and financial performance of your restaurant. A good choice of used cooking oil collector can help your kitchen run smooth and safely.
So, what are the questions you need to ask to make a good choice when you select a grease collector? After all, there are industry giants with global reach and fly by nighters who jump into the business when oil prices are high. Here’s what to ask your potential used restaurant oil collection company.
The answer to look for is how long they have been in business. You’re making sure they’re not going to stop showing up as soon as oil prices change. You want a partner who has been in business for at least 5 years. Ask for local references and call them. Check their reviews on Google. Check out comments on Facebook. Are you seeing customer complaints? Are they known for timeliness? Do they use software which predicts the fill rate of your tank so they know in advance when they should be there or will it be your job to call them every time you might need a pickup?
The answer here should be that they have a variety of outdoor tanks made with sturdy steel locking mechanisms to prevent theft. If you have an enclosed locked outdoor area you can go with a less secure tank.
Secondly, you want to be sure they have the ability to provide top-notch indoor automation. You may not need it today but you will probably want it in the future. Can they install indoor tanks and attach them to your fryers? Do they have options for transferring oil like direct plumbing, wand and oil caddies? If you need an interim solution or have a tight space, can they provide Eco-tubs for storing and moving used cooking oil? Ask them to talk to clients who have indoor systems.
Thirdly, let them see your kitchen and see if they suggest different options. Are they listening to your needs?
You want to be sure they have 24/7 emergency service and a guaranteed response time. More importantly, who are you asked to call in an emergency? Do you call the customer care center? A telephone bank or your local sales rep? When you have an emergency you need a fast response. Make sure you can call the CEO or COO and that you have their cell phone numbers. If they won’t provide those then you probably can’t count on their emergency response.
This is an important question. You want a provider with at least $1MM in liability insurance. Speak to their insurance agent.
A single point of contact for all your kitchen grease disposal needs is a great benefit. One call to handle a backed up grease trap or an UCO collection makes life a lot easier.
Take your time and speak to several collectors. They are your partners in your business.