Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

  1. Is Advantage Waste a member of the BBB?

    Yes. And we invite you to check us out with them.

  2. Can Advantage Waste supply vacuum truck service in under ground parking garages?
    Yes. Down to a height of 6’2″ or 1.88 meters
  3. How long has Advantage Waste been in business?
    Advantage Waste was incorporated in 1990.
  4. What insurance does Advantage Waste carry?
    Both comprehensive general liability and environmental impairment coverage as well as the normal ICBC for vehicles and worker compensation.
  5. Is it necessary to have environmental impairment coverage?
    Yes. If one handles and transports materials hazardous to the environment.
  6. How many vacuum trucks does Advantage Waste operate in it’s fleet?
    Seven vacuum trucks in all. (Two also operate as roll / off trucks c/w bins)

Storage Tank Questions

  1. What is a “UST”?
    An “Underground Storage Tank” is used primarily for furnace oil, home heating fuel, motor fuels, or heavy fuel oil. AKA “Bunker Fuel” size for private res. 1,589 and 2724LT. Being most common industrial tanks get up to 50,000LT.
  2. What is an “AST”?
    An “Above ground Storage Tank” is used primarily for storage of home heating oil and private residences and for storing various lube waste oils in industry. Size (200 – 300 imp. gallons) cap. 900 – 1362 litres cap.
  3. How do I know if I have a “UST”?
    The two most common clues are:
    A). A filler pipe in the lawn or driveway usually 2″ diameter c/w metal cap.
    B). A vent stack or pipe, usually 1 1/2″ Diam. attached to the home or other building. Commonly has a vented cap on top and is approx. 8′ long.
  4. I have a UST on my property, what are the risks involved?
    The UST should be removed or decommissioned if removal is not possible. (IE. located under the homes foundation etc.) The biggest risk is unknown leakage into the environment (soil & water contamination). Clean up is costly. At the least, action should be taken to remove the oil inside to eliminate the potential of leakage and contamination of the earth.
  5. Do I have to be concerned about my AST causing contamination?
    Yes, some of Advantage Waste’s largest resident jobs were caused by the slow leakage from AST’s that escape notice.
  6. I’m concerned that I may have a UST but have no clues as to its presence, what should I do?
    Advantage Waste provides a tank location service. Having this done will reduced the risk of accidental leakage and subsequent remediation of soil ** NOTE WHEN A UST OR AST IS FOUND TO CONTAIN EVEN A SMALL AMOUNT OF OIL, IT SHOULD BE REMOVED TO ELIMINATE THE POSSIBILITY OF THE REMAINING OIL TO LEAK INTO THE EARTH. Advantage Waste can provide these services when needed.
  7. Does Advantage Waste remove UST’s and AST’s?
    Yes, Advantage Waste has been pumping out and decommissioning these tanks safely for more than 20 years (since 1990). Call for a no charge quotation.
  8. Will my property be damaged by the removal process?
    No, Advantage Waste uses its many years of experience to cause a minimum amount of disruption to the property and will return it to the original condition by carefully returning and replacing all the aspects of the job fences, earth, sidewalks and lawns, and decks etc.Advantage Waste will even drive it’s excavation equiptment on plywood to prevent damage usually caused by driving on soft lawns.
  9. How long does it take to remove a UST?
    The duration on a uncontaminated site would be 2-3 days total. Contaminated site job durations depends on the size of the job and the challenges involved and would usually take more time. These jobs rarely take more than a week or two.

Grease Trap Questions

  1. Why does my grease trap over flow?
    Grease traps typically overflow from the trap itself. It typically occurs by a blocked outlet caused by grease and food waste making its way into the pipe and blocking the outflow. If the trap gasket/seal leaks, it will leak out of the trap; if it is sound, it will cause a backup in the sinks attached to the grease trap.
  2. Why do my floor drains overflow?
    Floor drains can cause water to back up to the surface of the floor by two ways. One being that water from the surface cannot pass through the drain due to excessive dirt or grit in the catchment area. Or a downstream drain or pipe is blocked causing water to rise up through upstream drains when flows are high. Servicing of the drains regularly can help to prevent backups and line jetting can clear blocked pipes to remove blockages to get the system flowing again.
  3. Why is there a grease trap odour in my kitchen?
    A restriction present in the kitchen drain system, either in the grease trap or further down the line in the outflow piping.
    Remedy: have an Advantage Waste operator service the grease trap and clear the pipes with one of our fully equipped service / vacuum trucks c/w HI / pressure water system.
    ** One of the common causes of this type of blockage is the bad habit of emptying mop buckets into the kitchen sink or tub.
  4. How do I know that it’s time to pump out my grease trap?
    If it has been more than 6 months, have it pumped out and cleaned. Only after servicing can a determination be made regarding frequency of servicing. There are many variables, this is a rough guide. It depends on size, amount of usage, etc.
    Regular size 2’x3’16″= 50 gallon, approx 3-6 months.
    Small size 20 gallons, approx 3 months max.
    Large size 3’x6’x3′ = 300 gallons, 1year
    Grease Trap Relocate service at appropriate intervals helps prevent back ups and down time for your restaurant. Initial servicing and cleaning of pipes / lines will help in providing trouble free operation. Proper timing of subsequent servicing will be fine tuned by appraising how full it is, and appropriate service interval can be decided upon and scheduled.

Septic Questions

  1. Why does my basement toilet bubble when I flush the upstairs toilets and sometimes the tub / shower backs up?
    A). Sewer pipe blocked between house and septic tank. (Solution: Clear the pipe with line jet)
    B). Septic tank is so full of solid material that it restricts the flow of effluent water. (Solution: Pump out solids with an Advantage Waste vacuum truck)
    C). Filter is blocked (Solution: Open up septic tank access and clean the filter (part of a regular septic tank pump out service call))
    D). Pipe is blocked between septic tank and drainage field (Solution: Use one of Advantage Waste’s line jet equipped vacuum trucks to clear and remove blockage and waste material)
    E). Septic drainage field is plugged or past it’s normal functioning life span. (Solution: Check for blockage (IE: Roots etc.) or it may be necessary to replace the drainage field completely with a new system.
  2. Is it normal to have several cubic feet of solid waste material left in the septic tank after servicing?
    No, large amount of solids should not be remaining. Although a small amount of residue is acceptable and normal. (Note water is acceptable as the septic tank will fill with water in one to three days, this is also normal.)
  3. How do I know that it’s time to pump out my septic tank?
    As a general guide line, 3 years. But there are many factors to be considered such as size of home and tank and the number of occupants. Call Advantage Waste for more info.
    Remember if you wait for signs of trouble, it could cost a lot more than a routine pump out. At the time of regular service, the timing for the next service can be determined.
  4. How do I know the septic tank is full and can the home owner determine this?
    It is difficult to determine, better left to a professional. Because there are 2 states of solid waste collecting in your septic tank.: One that floats and one that sinks. The over accumulation of either or both is detrimental to the life of the drainage field if allowed to over accumulate by waiting to long to do a pump out service. Septic fields are very expensive to replace, timely servicing is strongly recommended. Pump outs are a fraction of this cost.
  5. Why is there a wet soft spot in my back yard?
    If this area is near the home, it may indicate that the septic tank needs to be emptied or that there is a blocked/restricted effluent filter. If this spot is farther from the house, it may indicate septic field problems.
  6. Do I need to use septic enzymes?
    Enzymes will prolong the life of the septic field and help in the breaking down of solids in the septic tank. Enzymes are not effective at clearing a blocked septic field but can be used as a maintenance measure.
  7. How can I find my septic tank?
    Usually septic tanks are buried behind the bathrooms backing onto the backyard. Sometimes the grass may grow differently in the area above the tank. Septic tank sizes can vary, however, they are most commonly 4’x8’, with large ones being 6’x10’. The tank top may be flush with the surface or covered by as much as several feet of dirt. It is best to have a professional locate the tank. This can be done by probing through the surface carefully with a piece of steel rod; care must be taken to not break any attached or surrounding plumbing or utilities. The preferred method is using electrical locating equipment, as there could be buried electrical or gas utilities that would be hazardous if damaged. Advantage Waste can use either of these methods to locate your tank.

Drainage Questions

  1. My parking lot has standing water when it rains heavily, what is the cause and what can be done?
    Parking lots have drainage systems which include grated catch basins (C/B’s). These catch basins are designed to intercept sand, rocks and debris. They require regular servicing to prevent over filling which if allowed to occur will stop or slow the free flow of water and cause flooding.
    Solution: Advantage Waste can provide a vacuum truck and operator to remove the debris in these C/B’s and clear the drainage pipes and get the water flowing again. Get a quote for regular service today.
  2. Why does my basement flood when it rains heavily, can anything be done?
    Yes. Buildings below ground grade have perimeter drainage systems, comprised of pipes set around the foundation. These sumps provide easier access for repairs, access to the pipes that carry water to the city storm sewers, and catch debris. All their parts must be in operational condition. The system must be checked and action taken to remove silt from the partner drain pipes, sumps and out fall pipes.
    Solution: Advantage Waste can provide these services. Call today for a quotation.
  3. Where does this debris and sand come from?
    A). Drain tiles and sumps are blocked with sand that can infiltrate from around the pipe in the earth and by leaves and such from eves troughs, which decomposes and builds up in the pipes, plugging them up. Roots can also be involved.
    B). Sump: Same as above in (A) plus sand and grit from automobiles and sanding in winter.
    C). Out flow pipes can be blocked for two reasons roots infiltration and sand and debris.
    D). Pipe breakage can also occur, stopping normal flow.
    Solution: Call Advantage Waste for quote and service.
  4. What could be the cause of a parking lot flooding either above or under ground?
    The main cause of above and underground parkade flooding is high solids levels in catch basins. Also the pipes leaving the catch basins may be impacted with debris. Proper service intervals that match your needs will help to prevent flooding, as well pipes and drains can be cleared using high pressure line jetting.