A restaurant is a good business especially when your business location is quite good. People love to try and explore different dishes. You may serve different kinds of cuisine depending on the interests of your target market. You can have lots of potential customers because the food is a necessity.
However, owning a food business like a restaurant is also a big responsibility. Being a restaurant owner, you are held to the highest degree of sanitation required. One particular sanitation requirement that you have to comply is kitchen exhaust cleaning.
Kitchen exhaust cleaning
Kitchen exhaust cleaning is the process of removing greases that have accumulated inside the exhaust systems of commercial kitchens. A proper cleaning of the entire kitchen exhaust system includes the hoods, filters, fans, and all associated horizontal and vertical ductworks. It is important to monitor this because when left unclean, these exhaust systems can accumulate grease over time which is extremely prone to fire hazards.
Cooking is the greatest contributor of grease in your kitchen. Since your kitchen hoods are doing a great job in pulling away smoke, odors and unwanted particles, they are prone to grease accumulation. Grease when ignited, can cause a fire. It is better to have your whole kitchen exhaust system inspected and cleaned at regular intervals to avoid the risk of a restaurant fire.
Existing governing standard
The actual commercial kitchen exhaust system cleaning guidelines are outlined in the National Fire Protection Association Standard 96 otherwise known as the Standard for Ventilation Control and Fire Protection of Commercial Cooking Operations (NFPA-96 Standard). This regulation provides the minimum fire safety standards related to the design, installation, operation, inspection, and maintenance of all public and private cooking operations. All commercial kitchen operators and kitchen exhaust hood cleaners must observe strict compliance with this regulation.
This standard also states the frequency of the cleaning of your kitchen exhaust systems. Your kitchen exhaust systems are cleaned depending on your usage and the size of your kitchen hoods. A 24-hour restaurant that uses charbroiling needs frequent cleaning than a simple house who just cooks normal food three times a day. The standard requires monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, and annual cleaning. You can refer to your kitchen exhaust cleaning operators for the best cleaning needed for your restaurant.
Benefits of a clean kitchen exhaust system
- Reducing fire hazard
Primarily, this can be the main reason behind the cleaning process. As stated earlier, grease accumulation can cause a restaurant fire. Grease can easily ignite in solid, liquid or vapor form. Having a regular clean-up of your kitchen exhaust system can help reduce the risk of a fire hazard.
- Maintain proper airflow inside the kitchen
Having an improved airflow inside the kitchen creates a cooler working environment for you and your kitchen staff. It helps in reducing odors and excess smoke caused by grease and oils. Excessive cooking can cause the high presence of carbon monoxide in your kitchen which can cause poisoning.
- Extends the life of the kitchen exhaust fans
Regular inspection and cleaning of your kitchen exhaust system will make your exhaust fans last longer. It will also help the fans to maximize their performance in terms of exhausting odors and other smoke inside the kitchen.
- Compliance with NFPA-96 Standard
Inspectors usually ask for certificates issued by professional cleaning experts as proof of your compliance with the existing standard. Failure to comply with the standard can be bad for your business standing.
- Compliance with state and local health codes and regulations
Aside from the fire safety standard stated in NFPA-96, you also have to comply with your local health codes and regulations. Clean air is important inside your whole kitchen for the benefit of your employees.
These are just some of the wonderful benefits of a clean kitchen exhaust system. Exhaust hood cleaning protects your investment in facilities and people. A dirty exhaust hood is the enemy of profits for any commercial kitchen operator. It is important to hire professionals when cleaning your exhaust systems to ensure proper and thorough cleaning of the whole kitchen exhaust systems. You cannot compromise the safety of your employees and customers to any subpar cleaning operators. They are the life of your food business after all.