Our Advice on “Certified Cleaning”
When hiring a professional consultant or contractor it is important to hire a company with qualified and certified staff that follows
industry standards and guidelines to ensure a job done right.
Most importantly, one must have clear understanding of the scope of work being provided under any agreement.
Often, firms believe they purchase a cleaning of the entire system only to discover later that they have received a “Hood Washing”.
Trained and Certified Professionals
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the majority of restaurant fires originate on the kitchen cooking appliances and flare into the kitchen exhaust system.
Regular maintenance of a restaurant’s kitchen exhaust system is one of the primary defenses against fire hazards. By keeping these systems working at their best, they will evacuate the smoke
and grease out of the building and produce a cleaner, cooler kitchen and better working environment for staff.
Not All Exhaust Cleaning Services are “Complete”
When contracting for cleaning services, it is important to ensure you get a complete cleaning of your entire system. Some contractors offer a “hood cleaning service” which does not include the duct work or rooftop fan. While such services may keep the interior of the kitchen looking sharp, they do little to secure fire safety and reduce health threats.
Only a complete cleaning of the system from the hood in the kitchen to the fan on the roof – will reduce the risk of kitchen fires and ensure compliance with fire regulations.
Many companies are available today to clean kitchen exhausts.
However, most companies do not clean to any standards, or just clean to bare minimums. With 40% of all restaurant fires starting in the kitchen, it is more important than ever to make sure you hire a qualified professional that cleans to the highest standards.
The good news is that there is an easy way to make sure that you hire qualified companies to deal with your cleaning needs. The International Kitchen Exhaust Cleaning Association is the largest organization dealing with Exhaust Cleaning and Industry Certification.
Since 1979 we have been the industry leader in setting the highest standards for kitchen exhaust cleaners in Missouri and Illinois.
When you are choosing a service provider, consider the following:
The “Complete” Job
Being familiar with the routing of the exhaust duct-work, which is above the ceiling, and checking the completed operation after the cleaning process remains instrumental in eliminating surprises.
Request a written QUICK Quote and GET in writing what the cleaning contract proposes and how the work will be done.
Access to the Interior of the “System”
Building codes state that the interior of the system shall be “reasonably accessible for inspection and cleaning”.
As a general rule,
if the duct-work interior cannot be inspected, it cannot be cleaned properly.
When additional access panels are required to be installed onto exhaust ductwork to facilitate cleaning and inspection, it remains important to specify methods and material which align with applicable codes. Access panels should never be installed onto the bottom of the duct, and material used should be of the same thickness and type of the exhaust duct-work. Use of listed grease duct access door assemblies help insure that the construction of the panel complies with most model codes.
Accessing the Fan
All kitchen exhaust systems are equipped with blowers,
which must be included within the scope of cleaning.
Regardless of the type of fan employed, always inquire
with the cleaning contractor as to how your unit will be
cleaned. Also recommended would be to know who will
be responsible for regular mechanical maintenance for
belts and lubrication of rotating parts since this could
help eliminate system downtime.
Frequency of Cleaning
Kitchen exhaust systems generally require cleaning
from monthly to annually depending on many factors.
The greatest factor governing required cleaning frequency
is the volume of cooking. Configuration of the exhaust system may also dictate increased frequency.
The cleaning frequency of the exhaust system should be specified to keep the system free of fuel load sufficient to support fire and operating at maximum efficiency.
Request a Day and Time for your Hood Cleaning here
Certificate of Performance
Professional cleaning contractors will supply a certificate of performance, which is posted at or near the hood as proof of service. At a minimum, this certificate should indicate the date of inspection or cleaning, the name of the servicing company, areas not cleaned and next service due date.
Submitting a system service report at the conclusion of cleaning kitchen exhaust systems will allow much more information to be shared between the contractor and the facility being serviced. Documenting of mechanical, accessibility, and safety concerns raises the level of awareness of the customer regarding one of the most important systems at their facility. Kitchen Exhaust Professionals Should Be Able To Provide You With:
- Company qualifications, including certifications
- Start and completion dates for the project
- Certificates of insurance and applicable licenses