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KITCHEN EXHAUST INSPECTIONS & CLEANING

1 in 3 restaurant fires are caused by grease

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As per code, kitchen exhaust cleaning is required for every commercial cooking establishment in Canada.
Restaurants, hospitals, hotels, cafeterias and other food service locations have a hood and ductwork over the stove to exhaust smoke, steam, and fumes out of the building.

These exhaust gases leave a residue on the inside of the ductwork.

Heavy grease buildup, whether in a restaurant or home, creates a fire hazard.

HOW GREASE FIRES OCCUR
A common scenario of how a kitchen exhaust fire starts is this:

  1. A flame flares up on the stove.

  2. The fire contacts the filters above the stove on the kitchen hood. The filters ignite.

  3. Since the exhaust fan is on, drawing air into the hood, through the filters, and up the duct, the flame on the filters is pulled into the duct.

  4. If significant grease residue exists on the duct interior, this can act as an accelerant and the fire spreads up the duct, perhaps all the way into the fan. We have seen fire climb up a ten-story duct to the fan on the roof and burn up the fan.

FREQUENCY OF CLEANING
Recommended cleaning frequency depends on the type of cooking establishment:

  • 30 days: Wood-burning or charcoal-burning stoves, charbroilers, 24-hour restaurants and some hamburger places

  • 60 days: Many hamburger restaurants and fast-food locations

  • 90 days: Average restaurant, employee cafeteria, hotel or hospital kitchen

  • 180 days: Pizza places, convalescent hospitals or snack bars

  • 1 year: Hoods over non-grease-creating appliances, such as steam kettles, dishwashers or soup vats

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NFPA 96

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