What to Expect During a Restaurant Kitchen Hood Cleaning
Restaurant kitchen exhaust cleanings prevent restaurant fires by cleaning grease and other debris from the hood, filters, exhaust fan, and ductwork. The risk of a grease fire increases if you allow grease to accumulate. It also makes it harder for a kitchen hood cleaning company to clean down to the bare metal.
Most restaurant kitchens are required to have hoods cleaned twice a year to stay code-compliant. The entire kitchen hood cleaning usually takes 3 to 6 hours. While contractors should always strive to clean down to the bare metal, your kitchen exhaust system may need several cleanings if you have been neglecting cleanings. A commercial kitchen hood cleaning involves scraping grease buildup by hand, using cleaning chemicals, and pressure washing. Restaurant fire safety starts with scheduling regular kitchen exhaust cleanings.
Before we do anything, we have to protect your kitchen appliances and floors from being splattered with grease. Cleaning kitchen exhaust systems is a messy process, which is why the fire protection company you hire should take every precaution to keep the rest of your kitchen clean.
For safety reasons, we shut off the pilot lights and gas valves on appliances before covering them with tarps. The tarps protect appliances from being splattered with grease or cleaning chemicals. Since your kitchen exhaust system will be sprayed with chemicals and hot water, we wrap the hood in poly plastic in such a way as to create a funnel container that catches greasy water.
Clean Grease Baffle Filters
Once the kitchen has been prepared, we remove the kitchen baffle filters and soak them in cleaning chemicals for a couple of hours. The solution loosens grease buildup before we pressure wash them to blast away hardened grease.
Remove Hardened Grease from Ductwork
A kitchen hood cleaning contractor will manually scrape grease buildup from the insides of ducts. After hardened grease has been removed, a chemical mixture will be sprayed and allowed to sit for 30 minutes to an hour.
Clean Exhaust Fan
The kitchen exhaust fan is removed so we are able to spray both the top and bottom of the fan with cleaning chemicals. During this time, we also change the fan belt before cleaning down to the bare metal through pressure washing.
Pressure Wash Kitchen Hood
The hardened grease buildup inside the hood is scraped by hand. Chemicals are then sprayed into the hood and allowed to sit until grease loosens. Hot pressure washing is used to remove the loosened grease.
Pressure Wash Entire System
Once the cleaning chemicals have done their job and loosened hardened grease, the contractor will blast out any remaining grease with a pressure washer. Since the contractor sprays from top to bottom, the greasy water runs down and collects in the plastic funnel made earlier.
Replace Filters and Polish Hood
Once the kitchen hood filters have been properly cleaned, they are ready to be placed back in the hood. To help your kitchen hood look professional, the contractor should wipe down the exterior of the hood with a special polish.
Inspect Kitchen Exhaust System
During the inspection, the fire protection contractor will test the exhaust fan to ensure the system is working properly and is ready to be used.
Apply Certification Sticker
Once your kitchen hood system passes inspection, the contractor will put a certification sticker on each hood. The sticker is required by law because it proves that the kitchen hood was cleaned on a certain date to the health department, fire inspectors, and insurance agents.
Clean up Kitchen
Any reputable kitchen exhaust cleaning company will clean up so your kitchen looks better than when they arrived. This means turning on the pilot lights and gas and mopping floors if there was any grease splatter.
After we are done cleaning up, your kitchen hood and exhaust system will be set for another 6 months, depending on your volume of cooking operations. The National Fire Protection Association has a set of guidelines for how often commercial kitchens should clean kitchen exhaust systems. If you are unsure how this affects you, we recommend consulting with a licensed fire protection contractor.
The kitchen hood cleaning contractors at Fire Pros work hard to ensure restaurant kitchens are safe and ready for business. If you are interested in learning more about our kitchen hood cleaning services, give us a call at 800-968-2871.
and a Fire Pros representative
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