Cleaning and maintenance are vital for improving the lifespan of your kitchen equipment while ensuring cleanliness and hygiene. A commercial range hood is an essential piece of kitchen equipment that requires some special care and attention to ensure it’s working properly and staying clean and healthy.
Why you should clean your range hood
Range hoods are air extraction and filtration systems. They are designed to remove smoke, heat, grease, moisture, odors, vapor and steam from kitchens and food preparation areas. A good range hood will clarify and purify the air, help stabilise the ambient temperature and create a more comfortable working environment.
To ensure the optimal working conditions, a commercial range hood should be regularly cleaned. This will help to:
- Prevent expensive repairs
During the process of cleaning the range hood you can carry out general inspections to identify potential problems and maintenance to repair any issues before they become more significant and expensive problems.
- Improve its longevity
Cleaning the range hood will help to remove operational stress from the system, enabling it to work more efficiently and extending its working life.
- Ensure optimal air quality
A dirty range hood will not only work less efficiently, but it can also end up making the air quality worse. If the air and grease filters aren’t regularly cleaned, contaminants and bacteria can start to build up in the system and these pollutants can end up being circulated by the fans throughout the kitchen.
- Improve kitchen hygiene
A clean and hygienic commercial kitchen is essential for any business. Poor hygiene standards can lead to health violations, costly fines and damage to your business image and reputation. A clean and fully functional range hood is an essential part of maintaining professional kitchen cleanliness and hygiene.
Cleaning a range hood
Having shown you why you should clean your commercial hoods, let’s highlight the steps for cleaning the equipment.
- Choose the right cleaners
The first step to cleaning your commercial hood is selecting the right tools for the job. Generally, the right tools for your range hood depend on the materials of the equipment. Therefore, you should first take the time to identify the materials of your hood.
If your range hood is made with vinyl or plastic, you should clean it with an all-purpose cleaner. Alternatively, you can go for warm soapy water. Copper hoods should only be cleaned with specially formulated copper cleaner. Warm soapy water is recommended for stainless steel range hoods.
You will also need a commercial-grade kitchen degreasing cleaner to clean the grease traps and air filters.
- Clean the grease traps
First, remove the grease traps from the range hood. Most hoods have two traps on each side. Use a cloth, soft-bristle brush, or scrubbing pad to remove excess grease from the traps.
Next, you should prepare the cleaning mixture. Put liquid degreaser and warm water inside a large tub or sink. Confirm that you are using the appropriate ratio of the liquid degreaser. Place the traps inside the mixture and let them soak for about 10 minutes.
Finally, remove the traps and let them dry before replacing them in the hood.
- Clean the filters
Locate all air filters on the range hood and remove them. As you did for grease traps, fill a large tub or sink with an appropriate mixture of liquid degreaser and warm water. Place all the filters inside the mixture and let them soak for 2 to 3 hours.
After soaking, remove the filters and gently scrub them with a soft cloth before rinsing them under running water. This will get rid of the remaining residue on the filters.
Allow the filters to dry before replacing them.
- Clean the interior and exterior of the hood
Mix an appropriate mixture of degreaser and warm water inside a bucket. With the aid of a cloth, soft-bristle brush, or non-abrasive scrub pad, gently scrub the interior part of the equipment. Use a damp towel to get rid of the soapy residues on the fan, interior, and other parts of the hood. Dry off the components with another towel.
For the exterior of the hood, clean down using the same cleaning mixture before drying.
And you’re done! Your sparkling clean and fully functional range hood is now ready to go.