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The Importance of Commercial Hood Cleaning & Maintenance

Posted on October 13, 2021
by Vinay Panday

Here’s how hoods should be cleaned and maintained, and why certified experts are necessary for the cleaning procedures.

From restaurants to casinos to stadiums, everywhere there’s a commercial kitchen, there’s a commercial kitchen hood; and that hood is doing the good work of keeping the kitchen clean, comfortable, and efficient. Yet, despite the hard work it does every day for kitchens, hoods are often ignored in the regular cleaning and maintenance of a commercial kitchen, much to the detriment of the owners and workers.

Keeping the commercial kitchen hood clean on a day-to-day basis
Maintenance and most cleanings of commercial kitchen hoods need to be handled by professional and trained experts. That isn’t to say that your kitchen team should ignore the hood entirely. In fact, giving it a regular wipe down is a good idea. This can be done daily after the kitchen is closed. The hood should be off when this cleaning takes place.

Ensure you have the right filters fitted inside and consult the manual as to how frequently they should be replaced. Filters can also be cleaned easily. Many franchises and restaurants clean the filters by hand with hot soapy water. Others remove them and place them into the dishwasher or soak them overnight and replace them in the morning. In general, this should be part of your regular cleaning routine as well.

How often your kitchen staff clean the hood is dependent on the size and style of your restaurant. If you are grilling burgers and deep-frying food all day and most of the night, this will need to be a daily task for your team. If you’re a small sandwich shop that sells salads and grilled panini, then weekly or even biweekly will suffice.

Why clean a kitchen hood?
If you pride yourself on a clean and efficient kitchen, then you need to get your hood cleaned and maintained regularly. There are three major reasons for keeping a well-maintained and clean hood: cleanliness, cost, and safety.

A clean kitchen hood is an essential part of taking airborne grease away from your kitchen and safely outside. When your hood is unclean and poorly maintained, this grease gets trapped and stays in the kitchen, clogging up the hood and filtering back into the workspace. This leads to kitchen grease settling everywhere, making regular cleaning of workstations extra difficult and time-consuming. It also makes the space warmer.

These last two points, extra cleaning and increased temperature in the kitchen, increase costs – and this is before the hood itself has potentially broken down from neglect. By making the kitchen even more difficult to clean, you are paying more for labor costs just to do something for longer than it should take. Next, there’s the heat, which will inevitably lead to increased cooling costs to keep the kitchen within a reasonable temperature.

Besides these costs, the real expenditure that comes with an unclean and poorly-maintained commercial kitchen hood is the cost of repairs and replacement. Hoods are incredibly simple to maintain, but when they break down or need to be replaced, costs increase. It’s much easier to have a professional come for regular cleaning and maintenance than it is to fix a broken hood or replace it entirely.

Finally, there’s the safety issue. Kitchen hoods that get a lot of greases trapped inside are at a greater risk of causing fires. When this happens, your entire business could literally go up in flames and be a danger to people inside. Instead of risking safety, choose instead to connect with a trained kitchen hood expert who can help keep your kitchen clean, safe and efficient.

What franchises are doing for their kitchen hoods
While many restaurants are leaving most of their maintenance and cleaning to their staff with occasional check-ins from professionals, many franchises are recommending owners connect with a certified kitchen exhaust cleaning company for regular hood service. This is because franchises require their kitchens to meet certain universal standards including kitchen hood cleanliness and maintenance.

When you connect with a regular hood and kitchen exhaust cleaner, you are getting more than a cleaner, safer kitchen. You are getting peace of mind and confidence that your hood will be looked after and fixed before issues become too big and require major repairs.

IKECA – setting the standard for kitchen exhaust cleaning
The International Kitchen Exhaust Cleaning Association is a worldwide organization dedicated to certifying and standardizing kitchen hood cleaning. Its members not only represent the best cleaners on the planet, but they are also part of making best practices and procedures the standard and providing the highest level of cleaning to all of their clients.

As proud members of IKECA, we are dedicated to not just following the rules, but improving them and setting new standards. We are certified through their programs, meaning you can be confident that you are receiving the best service set by a globally-recognized group.

Kitchen hoods are an essential part of any business, something that needs regular attention and care in order to work perfectly. While your kitchen team should be cleaning the hood daily, much of the work that needs to be completed should be handled by a professional commercial hood cleaner. Only the trained professionals can handle the deep cleans and maintenance needed to ensure your hood is safe, clean and keeping your kitchen running as efficiently as possible.

If you own a kitchen and need a regular hood cleaning and maintenance service, Air Tek can help. Our team of IKECA certified cleaners and professionals will perform routine maintenance and cleaning to ensure your commercial hood can do the important work of keeping your kitchen efficient and comfortable.

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