ventilation systems | Exhaust System Cleaning | APS-HOODS | Denver Colorado

Exhaust System Cleaning for Restaurants (A Quick Guide)

Restaurants use kitchen exhaust systems for the safety of their staff and guests. The kitchen ventilation system keeps the cooking space free from heat, stuffy air, smoke, stale smells etc. Today, we have highly effective exhaust systems that perform their responsibilities quite well.    However, it is crucial to pay serious attention to the cleaning of the hood exhaust system – right from the hood, ductwork and the exhaust fan to the roof of the hood. By performing thorough and proper hood cleaning, you can keep the kitchen protected against fire hazards and make the entire restaurant environment pleasing and comfortable for visitors.   Key benefits of kitchen exhaust cleaning include:   Prevention from fire hazards Uninterrupted airflow Improved air quality Increased lifespan of kitchen equipment Save money in the long term  

If you get kitchen hood cleaning done on a regular basis, you don’t just reduce the risks of hazards but you also save money.

 

Call APS-Hoods for a free estimate on your Commercial Kitchen Hood Cleaning & Kitchen Exhaust Cleaning needs.

NFPA Standards for Kitchen Exhaust Cleaning

  The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has multiple codes and standards to minimize the risks of fire hazards. As a restaurant owner, you are required to abide by their guidelines and make sure you give your kitchen exhaust system a routine professional cleaning.   As per the NFPA standards, you should get the kitchen exhaust cleaning done by trained and qualified professionals. Today’s kitchen hood systems use such advanced technologies that restaurant owners don’t understand how the system actually functions and how exactly it needs to be cleaned. Commercial kitchen cleaning is an expert’s job. It’s the job of someone who is quite well-versed with the inner workings of modern hood systems. If you get the cleaning done by someone who isn’t trained and certified, you’ll be only putting the life of the kitchen staff at risk. In the occurrence of a fire, you may have to face potential litigation.   Therefore, always ensure that you hire a professional hood cleaning company. Qualified and experienced professionals understand the exhaust system of a kitchen like the back of their hand. They use a variety of techniques to clean the different components of the hood system in an effective manner.   

Methods for Cleaning Kitchen Exhaust

  Broadly speaking, there are two fundamental methods that hood cleaning companies use – scraping and pressure washing. Pressure washing is also termed as steam cleaning. Both the cleaning methods are known for their effectiveness in different cleaning situations. Depending on the specific needs of a commercial restaurant, the cleaning company can either use scraping or pressure washing or both. Provided it is done well, scraping will give remarkable results. At the same time, scraping of duct systems is a low-cost cleaning method.   On the other hand, pressure washing or steam cleaning takes a lot of time and it is an expensive method. Since this is an elaborate cleaning method, cleaning companies need to do some advance planning and preparation for the same. Moreover, this cleaning method involves the use of some expensive equipment and tools. The biggest plus point or benefit of this method is that it can clean the hood exhaust system of the kitchen to bare metal.   In most cases, cleaners use a combination of both scraping and steam cleaning to do an excellent job of exhaust cleaning. In this way, the kitchen hood system is cleaned thoroughly and the overall environment gets enhanced protection from different kinds of fire and safety hazards.  

Step-by-Step Cleaning of the Hood System

  The kitchen exhaust system consists of multiple parts, which work together to pull out grease, smoke, heat and fumes from the kitchen. The hood cleaning process involves paying adequate attention to each comprising part of the kitchen exhaust so that proper and thorough cleaning can be done.  

Disconnect Movable Elements:

A kitchen exhaust system has some parts which are portable. This means you can detach them from the main unit while leaving only the static components. Next, hood cleaners remove the grease filters and use the plastic sheeting to create the shape of the chute along the outer edge of the exhaust system for the cleaning process to begin. Exhaust Rooftop Cleaning: Usually, most professionals begin cleaning from the roof of the hood system. The exhaust fan housing is a potential area which collects a lot of grease over time. Hood cleaners will either remove the grease from this element or replace the grease pads with new ones. This component needs more attention from hood cleaners. Wherever there is grease buildup, the cleaning company will clean all the pads and filters.  

Exhaust Fan Cleaning:

The cleaning of exhaust fans is a task in itself. Kitchen exhaust cleaning professionals inspect this area and start cleaning as per what is required. They will clean the fan blades. They’ll review the motor and find out if it is in good condition and working properly. They will inspect the bearings. If the fan belt is loose, the cleaner will fix it as well.  

Ductwork Cleaning:

Cleaning the ducts is one of the most essential parts of the overall exhaust system cleaning. Professionals use the method of steam washing to clean the ductwork of the exhaust. For cleaning convenience, the NFPA recommends restaurant owners use large access panels. If your ductwork has large access panels, it will be easy for the staff to perform the cleaning task. If the access panels are not wide enough, the cleaning company will ask you to replace them and use wider access panels. Cleaning contractors can also use scrapping as part of ductwork cleaning for thorough and proper cleaning.  

Hood Cleaning:

The plenum and the inside of the kitchen hood have grease buildup that isn’t always easy to clean. If the buildup is stubborn, the cleaning professional will use the scraping method for cleaning. Otherwise, they will clean these areas through the pressure washer system. Pressure washing is often needed for cleaning the hoods of the exhaust system.    After the cleaning of the hood system is complete, the contractor will dispose of all the grease and wastewater from the kitchen. They’ll efficiently reconnect all the detachable elements of the kitchen exhaust. Then, an inspection of the exhaust will follow to make sure all components are well-connected and the entire system is working properly. If there are leakage issues with the ductwork, they will fix it and finally submit a report of the completed cleaning assignment.  

How Often Exhaust Cleaning Should be Done

  The frequency of exhaust cleaning varies from one kitchen to another. It depends on the volume of cooking in the kitchen. Another important factor is whether the stove used is wood-burning or gas. If you use a wood stove or charcoal stove, exhaust hood cleaning will be required more frequently. In fact, you’ll need hood cleaning service at the interval of every two weeks.   There are different cleaning frequencies for 24 hours restaurants, cafeteria, hamburger restaurants, snack bars etc.    Regardless of what type of restaurant you operate, you should get in touch with a reputed, commercial kitchen cleaning company and have a consultation about your specific cleaning needs. Kitchen exhaust cleaning can never be ignored by any food establishment or restaurant. Routine exhaust cleaning helps you abide by the NFPA and local fire codes as well as enhance the safety of the cooking staff and the guests that come to your restaurant. Regular cleaning also increases the lifespan of kitchen equipment. If you are looking for a kitchen hood cleaning service, feel free to give APS-Hoods a quick call or shoot them an email. They operate in areas like Colorado, Lakewood, Aurora etc.  

Call APS-Hoods for a free estimate on your pressure washing, ventilation, sanitizing, or vent/duct/hood needs.

 

How to Choose a Commercial Kitchen Cleaning Service

  Kitchen exhaust cleaning is a job which comes with a lot of responsibility. If you end up working with a fly-by-night cleaning company, you can get yourself in serious trouble. Worse still, you may have to completely shut down your restaurant business. Therefore, always make sure the cleaning company you work with is well-known, reputed, qualified and trained for doing the job.   Before you hire a company that provides hood cleaning, you shouldn’t hesitate to ask them a couple of questions in regard to:  
  • Certification, affiliation
  • Overall experience
  • Areas of expertise
  • References
  • Training program for employees
  These are some of the key criteria on the basis of which you can vet the commercial kitchen cleaning contractor. When you are entrusting a crucial task such as kitchen hood cleaning, you should work only with the best. A good cleaning company offers you quality and value for money.   APS-Hoods, operating throughout Colorado, is a kitchen hood cleaning company which carries 20 years of experience. They have worked with a wide range of small and big restaurant businesses and have successfully conducted the cleaning tasks. APS-Hoods has affiliations with the National Fire Protection Agency. The company is also fully insured and bonded. When working with APS-Hoods, you can feel confident that your kitchen exhaust system will get a proper and thorough cleaning, which is in full compliance with the state and local codes.

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Exhaust System Cleaning | APS-HOODS | Denver Colorado

How Does a Commercial Hood System Work?

A commercial kitchen needs powerful equipment to vent smoke, heat, grease, and food particles away from food and personnel so that they are out of harm’s way. Too much smoke can make the air unbreathable and can lead to poor food quality. Your customers also won’t want to stick around if there is too much soot in the air. Likewise, too much grease and oil can lead to a breakout of fire. This makes a ventilation hood a wise investment for commercial kitchen owners.

Not only is a commercial hood system necessary for safety and health, but you need the proper ventilation equipment to comply with National Fire Protection Association Standard #96, otherwise known as NFPA #96). That’s because commercial vent hood systems are one of your first lines of defense against deadly fire.  

Here is all you have to know about how commercial hood systems work so you can remain up-to-code and protected from fire and poor air quality.

Ventilation Hoods Balance the Air

The primary use of a commercial kitchen vent hood is to remove the foul air and replace it with good, breathable air. The hood itself is located above the cooking appliance. As the appliance does its thing cooking the food, powerful fans will waft all that smoke and debris up through the hood and into the shaft. That is where the magic happens.

From Hood to Fan and Back Again

Every commercial hood system has a powerful exhaust fan that helps to remove the bad air and effluent, which is a fancy word for smoke, grease, heat, and cooking by-products.

The type of fan you have will depend on the appliance you are using, the type of food you cook, and the position of your cooking appliance. Most hoods are positioned overhead, but they can also be wall-mounted.  Ask your ventilation system installation team for details on the type of hood system that is ideal for your commercial kitchen layout.

When the exhaust fan removes the air away from the building, a return air fan will be used to supply make-up air. This is the air that replaces all the cooking effluent so that the air stays breathable, balanced, and safe for customers and staff alike.

As you can imagine, the fans you use have to be powerful enough to remove and replace the air at the proper volumes. Not only that, but your commercial hood system, fans, and ducts help your HVAC system work more easily. After all, can you imagine how much power would be required to force your heating and air conditioning system to fight against grease and smoke to keep your restaurant cool or warm?

All these fans and ducts and your commercial vent hood must work together to keep grease and harmful vapors at bay. As you can imagine, these systems can become soiled and overloaded with grease over time. Most hoods contain grease traps on either side of the hood, and these filters must be cleaned regularly.

You must also ensure that your commercial hood and the vents connected to your hoods and fans are cleaned regularly. Not cleaning your commercial vent hood components can lead to buildup and, eventually, malfunction.

Do you leave the cleaning up to your commercial kitchen staff and possibly your wait staff, as well? You can and many restaurant owners do. However, it is recommended that you combine your staff’s cleaning with professional commercial hood cleaning services. Only then can you be assured that the proper degreasing solutions and equipment will be used to keep your equipment clean and working as it should for years to come.

The Necessity of Commercial Hood Cleaning

You will know that your commercial vent hood system is backed up or not functioning normally when you see more smoke in the air than normal. You may smell foul odors from outside the building, and your HVAC system may seem to be on the fritz.

If you are keeping your restaurant’s grease trap clean, that can help against backups. But make sure you are also keeping your vent hood traps clean. Clean all fan components and use a powerful degreaser on the equipment and in all the interconnecting ducts.

If the front door of your vent hood opens easily without a suction feeling, that is an indication that your commercial hood system is clogged with grease or other debris. Or that your fans aren’t working properly. Either way, it may be time to contact a commercial kitchen vent hood service, who can repair your components and provide you with a full cleaning job, whichever you prefer.

Benefits of Professional Vent Hood Cleaning

Not only will cleaning your commercial hood system keep your kitchen safe and air breathable-clean, but you will save money. An efficient vent hood system uses less energy than one that is clogged and forced to work overtime.

Therefore, to save time, money, and future frustration, contact APS-Hoods, now serving commercial kitchen owners throughout Denver, Colorado. Using the proper equipment and years of experience, we can keep your vent hood system working optimally and cleaned professionally.

Your customers will thank you and you will remain health code and fire code compliant. When your air is pure, the food is untainted and tastes terrific, and you are able to show code inspectors that you have been keeping up with all the necessary ventilation protocols, you’ll be doing yourself a great service for your restaurant’s success.

Are you ready to keep your kitchen safe and the health inspector at bay? Contact us today to receive a free quote in Denver.

commercial kitchen cleaning | APS-HOODS | Denver Colorado

7 Energy Cost “Busters” for Today’s Busy Commercial Kitchens

Image Source Denver-CO | Busy Commercial Kitchens- The cost of food, equipment, and overhead is enough to cripple many food establishments unless precautions are taken. Restaurant managers should prioritize the lowering of energy costs if the business hopes to remain solvent long into the future. Here are the steps to follow when you want to minimize your energy bills to maximize the success of your commercial kitchen.
  1. Operational Changes:

    Keep track of business day-to-day and look for any lulls where you can turn off equipment, such as keeping one oven operational as opposed to all three, for example. The smallest actions can lead to major savings when it comes time to receive the energy bill.
  2. Low-Cost Retrofits:

    Vent hood professionals can examine your ventilation system to determine if any parts can be retrofitted for major savings. Going off-brand or refurbished can produce the same efficiency as a brand-new name-brand but get a professional’s opinion before any parts are switched out. This isn’t something you want to “wing,” after all.
  3. HVAC Maintenance:

    Your HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) system accounts for nearly 30% of your overall energy expenses. For that reason, you will want to ensure that all of your system’s components are operating as they should. Regular ventilation cleaning and maintenance can keep your energy costs down and the risk of fire at bay.
  4. Short Pre-Heats:

    Many kitchen managers feel that it’s better to pre-heat early, but this can lead to exorbitant natural gas expenditures. Steam tables, grills, and broilers shouldn’t need to be pre-heated much or at all, and ovens should only need 15 minutes tops, depending on the appliance make, model, and age.
  5. Newer Equipment:

    While the thought of purchasing all new equipment can fill frugal restaurant managers with dread, those appliances will soon pay for themselves. When you consider that most major commercial food equipment is designed to be Energy Star rated, you can save loads by giving those energy-hog components the old heave-ho. The ventilation and commercial kitchen professionals can help you choose the ideal components for the lowest energy fees possible.
  6. Precook Foods:

    Potatoes, chicken, for example, can be cooked in a steamer before they are fried. Steamers are more efficient than fryers, and soon you’ll see the difference on your electric bill.
  7. Proper commercial Kitchen Layout:

    Believe it or not, the way you arrange your kitchen can lead to more significant energy costs. If your ovens are places directly next to your refrigerators, your fridges may have to work twice as hard. For best results and lower energy fees, place all your cooking equipment under a single vent hood and away from all cooling equipment.

Regular commercial kitchen Maintenance Can Keep Costs Low

There is one more point that must be made. A clean kitchen in a more efficient and cheaper kitchen. When you consider that grease buildup and grime can jam up your vent hood fans and other ventilation system components, you could be paying more than you should to keep your commercial kitchen operational. Regular cleaning by the ventilation and commercial kitchen system experts can keep your energy costs as low as you need to ensure your commercial kitchen – and overall business – succeeds. To learn more about reducing energy costs for commercial kitchens, contact Aps-Hoods, the commercial kitchen and food truck expert in Orange County, CA and Denver, CO. Get a free quote today! © 2018 Millionairium and Farazandeh. Authorization to post is granted, with the stipulation that Millionairium and Farazandeh are credited as sole source. Linking to other sites from this document is strictly prohibited, with the exception of herein imbedded links.

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