The Importance of Regular Kitchen Grease Hood Cleaning

Kitchen Hood cover before it was cleaned by PROAC.

When it comes to industrial cleaning, one of the most passed over appliances is the commercial kitchen hood and exhaust system. Many jurisdictions have adopted the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standard 96, “Standard for Ventilation Control and Fire Protection of Commercial Cooking Operations” and require compliance to it. Left uncleaned, commercial kitchen exhaust systems eventually accumulate sufficient grease to become a serious fire hazard. According to the NFPA, commercial kitchen cooking operations should be inspected regularly, at intervals consistent with usage, and cleaned when the inspection reveals an accumulation of grease.

Steps to Properly Clean a Kitchen Grease Hood 

Cleaning is completed using a degreaser and a hot water pressure washer. Cleaning includes the hood, exhaust ducts and exhaust fans.

The first step is to protect non-affected kitchen appliances and surfaces. Typically, this is done by covering the non-affected areas with painter’s plastic.

The hood is then wrapped with plastic to collect, wash and rinse water. This water is funneled to a drum or other collection type vessel.

The exhaust fan is then cleaned with degreaser and pressure washer.

Degreaser is entered into the exhaust duct and a spinner ball is dropped down the exhaust duct for cleaning.

The intake plenum is then cleaned with degreaser and pressure washer.

The hoods are cleaned with a degreaser and polished.

A certification sticker is attached to the hood to enable the authority having jurisdiction and other inspectors to check for compliance.

Plastic is removed, and the area is returned to its original condition.

A report, including photographs of the area before and after cleaning is issued.

Regular Cleaning is Important

Many commercial cooking operations have adopted a regular cleaning schedule, either annually or every six months, as part of their regular maintenance schedule. Regular cleaning decreases the potential for a fire and increases the overall cleanliness of the kitchen cooking area.