It’s your job to remove smoke, grease, and grime from your kitchen hood and cooking area. You need to clean it regularly so splatters and grease don’t accumulate on the hood itself or in its ductwork, creating a potential fire hazard.
Your kitchen hood should be cleaned at least every three months, or once a month if you cook more often than occasionally or use high levels of grease or animal fat.. Commercial kitchens follow the same regime; however, if you run a busy or greasy kitchen, you may need to increase your cleaning frequency.
The following steps outline how to clean your kitchen hood the right way, followed by a few extra steps for commercial kitchen owners:
1. Gather your cleaning supplies.
You can use a degreasing product to clean your kitchen hood, or you can mix one part vinegar with one part water as an effective and cheap alternative!
2. Cut the electricity to your kitchen hood.
Unplug your hood or cut the breaker that supplies power to it. You’ll be getting some of its parts wet, so this will keep you safe from being electrocuted.
3. Wipe down the outside of the hood.
Douse the outside of your hood with your chosen cleaning solution and thoroughly wipe down the area using a microfiber cloth, paper towels, or a clean rag.
4. Clean the underside.
The underside of your hood can become quite dirty and may require some scrubbing. Use a scrubbing brush that’s designed for delicate surfaces, apply your solution, and scrub away! If this area has tough stains that aren’t coming out, make a thin paste out of warm water and baking soda and apply it to the underside, leaving it to do its work for about 30 minutes.
5. Remove and clean the filter.
The next step is to carefully remove your hood’s filter. Soak it in a sink filled with a mixture of hot water, dish soap, and baking soda. Once all the grime is loosened, go ahead and scrub until all dirt has been removed. Be careful not to scrub so vigorously that you damage the filter! When the filter is clean, rinse it and let it air-dry before putting it back in the hood.
6. Check the vent or ductwork.
Kitchen hoods are equipped with ductwork or a vent that enters the house. Grease can build up in these areas and cause a potential fire. Ductwork or vent areas are hard to get to without proper tools, so if you’ve encountered lots of grease while cleaning the other parts of your kitchen hood, it would be wise to pause here and hire a professional to get the buildup in the vent or ductwork out.
Add the following steps to your kitchen hood cleaning if you have a commercial kitchen:
7. Clean the grease trap screens.
Remove the grease traps from your kitchen hood and remove as much grease as possible. Use your scrubbing brush to get rid of any remaining grease, then fill your sink with one of your cleaning solutions, let the traps soak for 5 to 10 minutes, and let them air-dry completely before putting them back into place.
8. Remove and clean the fan blades.
Commercial kitchen hoods each have at least two fans. In order to clean them, you’ll need to detach and remove them from the hood. Use a drill to detach the fan blade cover so you can access the blades. Remove each blade, making sure to keep track of where each goes in your hood, and soak them in warm, soapy water. Dry the blades and reattach them into the unit.
How Fire Suppression Systems WorkKitchen fires can be quick to spread, so having a suppression system along with a consistent cleaning regimen is of the utmost importance. Kitchen hood suppression systems are a required additional fire safety measure for commercial kitchens. They are typically installed above individual appliances and cooking stations. They are activated when they sense smoke or excessive heat and can be manually activated as needed.
Once activated, suppression systems discharge their chemical agents through nozzles to suffocate the fire. These systems also cut off the gas control valve and power to appliances to decrease the chance of the fire spreading. Fans in the hood then work to remove smoke from the kitchen.
If you need help cleaning, installing, or checking code compliance of your kitchen hood or kitchen hood suppression system, give Brothers Fire & Security a call! We’ll make sure you have the right system to keep you and your kitchen safe.