Nashville Hood Cleaning Pros Explains Hood Cleaning December 8, 2020
Restaurant hood cleaning is one of those jobs most people do not even know exists. It is the process of removing the grease and grime that is sucked into the exhaust system that is above the grill and fryers in most restaurants and other commercial kitchens. It is important to have these systems cleaned on a regular basis by a professional. Relying on employees to remove all of the grease from the system is not a good idea as they may miss some important areas.
Grease is flammable and if not removed from top to bottom, the commercial kitchen could experience a grease fire from even the smallest spark. If a commercial kitchen does not have a professional hood cleaning done on a regular basis, the insurance company may not cover the damage and that could cause the restaurant to permanently close their doors. It is also important to keep employees safe in the workplace.
The process of hood cleaning is not complicated but it is one of the dirtiest jobs out there. Our technicians wear jump suites to protect their clothing because the grease has a way of going everywhere. In order to protect the equipment below the exhaust system, they install plastic sheeting with magnets and direct them into large trash cans.
They pull the filters and spray them with an environmentally friendly degreaser then set them aside to soak. Then the duct is sprayed with the degreaser that starts to dissolve the grease. The turbine is the next step as it is better to work top to bottom. The turbine is usually on the roof, so our technicians set the pressure washer as the base of the ladder to gain access to the roof. Degreaser is applied to the turbine and left to sit as well.
Once the grease is mostly dissolved, they will spray the turbine with extremely hot water and let it run down the duct. The water is directed into the trash cans as it runs down the plastic. Once the turbine is cleaned, the pressure washer is then moved to the kitchen to clean the filters and get any residue left in the duct. Once that is done, the exhaust system is dried then polished to give it that “like new” appearance.
As this process is taking place, the technicians will take before and after photos for the commercial kitchens’ records. This is important because if they get a surprise visit from the health inspector or fire marshal, they can prove they are doing their due diligence in having their hood professionally cleaned. They also place a sticker on the hood indicating the date of the hood cleaning and the next recommended date it should be done.
Once they pack up their gear, they double check to be sure they cleaned up any mess they may have made. Mostly the restaurant owner/manager leaves them instructions on how to set the alarm and lock the door because hood cleaning is usually done after the restaurant closes unless they have a day they are closed.
We have had to come in after some other hood cleaning company came in because they were not very good at their job. One place has so much grease accumulated on the roof, we had to shovel it to get it off the roof. Grease can be very damaging to a roof as not only does it create a fire hazard; it can also cause damage to the material the roof is made out of. A build-up of grease can be heavy and eventually cause the roof to cave in.
In addition to the damage is may cause it could run down the side of the building causing more damage. Lastly, grease accumulation on the roof can be an environmental problem as well. If there is a storm, the grease will flow down the gutters to the street and dump into the storm drain. The fines for this are hefty and the clean-up is costly as well.
How often a professional hood cleaning should be performed is designated by the National Fire Protection Association Code 96. The recommendations are as follows:
- If a commercial kitchen uses wood or charcoal burning stove or is a twenty-four hour restaurant or cooks fast foods like hamburgers, it should be performed monthly.
- For commercial kitchens that see a high volume of cooking it is recommend they have their kitchen exhaust system cleaned professionally every three months.
- For places that have an average volume of sit-down cooking or a pizza place, the recommendation is every six months.
- If the system is used over non-grease appliances or the kitchen is used seasonally and don’t product a large volume of food – for example a church – they should get it cleaned once a year.
Keep in mind there should be some cleaning in-between professional cleanings. Our technicians can give you some tips on keeping it cleaned as well as make suggestions on repairs that may need to be done.
At Nashville Hood Cleaning Pros, we make sure all our technicians are thoroughly trained to the National Fire Protection standards. All technicians are bonded and insured.