Foam Buster

Immediate Breakdown of Fat, Oil, and Grease

  • Digests short chain fatty acids and the by-products of grease degradation
  • Provides key nutrients and stimulants
  • Safe and easy to use


Foam Buster is a blend of specialized proteins, free amino acids, and micronutrients which stimulate the floc-forming bacteria to degrade grease, emulsions, and helps them to outcompete the filaments which cause foaming. Chlorinating can only provide short term relief, and often only fragments the filaments, leading to worse foaming issues down the road. Foam Buster addresses the underlying cause of foaming.

Foaming filaments like Nocardia-like organisms and Microthrix parvicella use fatty acids to produce a buoyant cell wall. Foam Buster programs your wastewaters plant’s naturally occurring bacteria to consume these fatty acids. Foam Buster’s vitamins enable certain cellular functions to accomplish this task. Once the degradation of FOG and fatty acids improves, these troublesome filaments cannot survive on the dwindling food supply.

Foam Buster is effective in the oxidation ditches, activated sludge plants, SBRs, extended aeration wastewater treatment plants, and aerobic digesters. All these areas can be infiltrated by foam-causing, F.O.G.-hungry filaments like Microthrix parvicella, Nocardia, and Type 1863. Foam Buster also works well on the bulking filament Type 0092.

Most bacteria in wastewater plants are unmotivated and listless. Part of Foam Buster’s micronutrient blend is formulated to give the filament-degrading bacteria extra boosts of energy that allow them to degrade the filaments faster than they can reproduce thus getting rid of foam. As the graph shows, Foam Buster allows wastewater bacteria to degrade filaments while contributing a much lower amount of their own energy.

Foam Buster supports filament degradation in more ways than energy. Its formula also contains nutrients specifically needed by the bacteria to create certain foam-busting biocatalysts. A bacon grease molecule is different from a butter molecule is different from a filament molecule, and Foam Buster provides the right array of micronutrient ingredients to allow the bacteria to produce the specialized recipes for biocatalysts to attack these different molecules.

A lot of time when a wastewater plant gets foam they will use a chemical defoamer or an anti-foam to knock it down. Chemical defoamers work by covering up the problem for a period of time. In addition, chemical defoamers can cause sludge bulking issues, nitrifier toxicity, and are limited in that they do not control Nocardia or surfactant foams. Silica anti-foamers break down into siloxanes which corrode combustion engines. Neither type of product truly addresses the root cause of the problem.

Dose Rate

Nocardia or Microthrix Treatment

Flow Rate (Liters per day) Initial Dose (once per day, first 30 days) Maintenance dose (once per day)
378,541 LPD 907 grams 454 grams
1, 89 MgLPD 1.8 Kg 907 grams
3.78 MgLPD 3.62 Kg 1.8 Kg

Product Pairings

For especially tough issues, pair with Qwik-Zyme L to get the grease under control while Foam Buster alters the bacteria populations so the foam will not return.

Applications and Benefits

  • Oxidation ditches
  • Sequencing batch reactors (SBRs)
  • Extended aeration wastewater treatment plants
  • Aerobic digesters
  • Reduces and eliminates foam
  • Reduces sludge and scum production
  • Eliminates negative impacts from incoming fat, oil, and grease
  • Improves settling
  • Increases good bacterial populations

Case Studies

Nocardia Foam



A wastewater treatment plant on the south side of Chicago had an extensive foaming issue caused by the Nocardia filament. All the aeration basins were completely covered and the foam even found its way into the center walls of the clarifier.

1.1 MGD activated sludge municipal treatment plant incoming BOD: 140-160 ppm incoming ammonia: 15-20 ppm.

In addition to the foaming, the plant received exceptionally high spikes of ammonia during the weekends. These spikes would reach up to 60 ppm.


The operators began applying Foam Buster and Qwik-Zyme L to improve the cold weather degradation of surfactants, grease, and long-chain fatty acids, all which are nutrients for Nocardia.


By the 30th day of the application, 5% of the foam cleared up to 75%. The operators continued a maintenance application to fully clear the plant. By fully degrading the grease and fatty acids, more ammonia and nitrogen was consumed, thus stabilizing the weekend ammonia spikes.

Another piece to the puzzle: This plant’s operator got a tip from a nearby neighbor about suspicious activity. After putting two and two together the operator notified the authorities. It turns out, in this nice community, a resident was producing methamphetamine. As soon as this meth lab was shut down, the wastewater plant stop receiving ammonia spikes. Aquafix was able to help out with the spikes, but the production of methamphetamine will send very high amounts of ammonia and other chemicals to your plant. It is unfortunate, but highly important to keep a watchful eye.

Oxidation Ditch


A wastewater plant in Western Pennsylvania has a flow rate of 3 million gallons per day. During the winter months they routinely encounter problems with foam.


March 1, 2011 they began adding 20 lb. of Foam Buster per day.


3 weeks later: The foam was gone and the temperature of the aeration basins was 75°F.

Product Resources

PDF Downloads: Product info, SDS, and white papers

Foam Buster Info Sheet
Foam Buster SDS


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