With numerous cooking-related activities in the kitchen daily, it’s part of its nature to be dirty and greasy sometimes. However, these specks of dirt—from the smoke or heat used to cook the dish or simply from the raw food ingredients utilized—are harmful to have around your house or commercial establishment.
Neglected grease build-up in your ducts can lead to many serious problems and tragic circumstances, such as fire breakouts or poor air quality, that can eventually affect the health of individuals often working in the kitchen area. Hence, house or commercial space owners must regularly clean their kitchen ducts.
However, access to these facilities can be a bit challenging as their location is typically in hard-to-reach areas, and this is where the importance of grease duct access panels lies. To learn more about its benefits to your kitchens, continue reading this blog post.
Five vital benefits of grease duct access panels
Allows easy duct access
The kitchen vent and duct hood’s location is troublesome for cleaning, repair, and maintenance specialists to work on. Hence, owners should consider installing grease duct doors as it grants professionals a convenient entry point to enter in and do the necessary tasks.
Without this special panel type, the simple repair, maintenance, and cleaning works can take much longer to finish, which can immensely affect your labor cost expense causing it to increase a lot. Moreover, overlooking the efficient access worries of the specialists can result in poor performance, with some debris fragments left unattended.
Maintain good ventilation
With grease ducts and an access panel companion, you can ensure that your kitchen is well-ventilated inside the kitchen and the entire establishment. It can guarantee good ventilation even when the kitchen is bustling with cooking dishes as the emitted smoke straightly goes toward the duct.
Disregarding these essential facilities can harm the overall business of restaurant owners. Too much smoke in the kitchen can potentially suffocate the employees, affecting day-to-day productivity. Diner entrepreneurs should consider these utilities a long-term investment to save them from dangers and accidents.
Prevent food odors
Improperly addressed or ignored grease issues can firmly hold to your freshly cooked meals, destroying their fresh quality and smell. This situation is a major no-no, particularly for restaurants, as it can affect their image, discouraging customers from dining regularly or attracting new patronizes.
It’s why it’s critical to clean these stinky grease and grime issues building up on your from time to time, so the unpleasant smell will never stick to the food you’re about to serve. Thanks to the quick access point, the grease duct doors will help you effectively keep the cleanliness, empowering professionals to address the issue immediately and prevent further business damage or interruption.
Avoid the development of fire-hazard elements
The build-up of grease combined with the high temperature inside can naturally ignite fire over time, so you’ll never really know when it’ll break out. Thus, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) mandates the installation of grease ducts in every commercial building. It can directly lead the oil, grease, smoke, dust, fumes, and odor-vulnerable air outside the establishment, prohibiting further development of different fire hazard elements.
You should develop a good habit of routinely checking your kitchen ducts for maintenance and cleaning to prevent the unknowingly starting of a fire. Along with the grease duct, the grease duct access door will aid you in instantly scanning if your kitchen ducts and vents call for immediate cleaning.
Guarantee the safety of food, customers, and employees
Overall, installing grease ducts and a specific grease duct panel type secures the safety of your kitchen and your entire house or restaurant business. It’s a cost-efficient investment that keeps the fresh ambiance of your kitchen, maintains the quality of the food you’re serving, and ensures your property’s lasting value. Furthermore, it’s also a way for business owners to tend to their employees by providing a safe and healthy work environment.
Grease duct panel guidelines
When installing grease duct access doors, you must adhere to specific rules and directives by the NFPA. Here are some NFPA-96 codes you can refer to:
- NFPA-96 4.1.8: This regulation requires that all parts of an exhaust system have access panels or doors to clean the system fully.
- NFPA-96 5.1.2: All areas that channel grease and exhaust vapors must be watertight. There must be a continuation of this external weld down to the lower part of the outermost perimeter of the hood.
- NFPA-96 7.3.1: Access panels must be located on the sides or tops of ducts – depending on which area is more accessible.
- NFPA-96 220.127.116.11: Human access to horizontal ducts requires an opening of 20″ by 20″.
- NFPA-96 7. 4.1.2: The opening must be large enough to allow cleaning if the duct size does not allow for a 20″ by 20″ opening.
- NFPA-96 18.104.22.168: Horizontal systems must be accessible by a 10-foot stepladder or dedicated work platform.
- NFPA-96 22.214.171.124: If entry isn’t possible, creating suitable access for cleaning is essential.
- NFPA-96 126.96.36.199: All seams, joints, connections, and penetrations must have a watertight continuous external weld.
Make sure to find and consult a local expert who can share more reliable hood safety tips and best cleaning practices to help safe-keep your kitchen exhaust system. In line with this, many hood professionals reiterated using only appropriate hood-cleaning chemicals that safely and effectively remove dirt in blades, fans, filters, floors, grills, and other kitchen duct parts. For restaurant entrepreneurs, you should assign an employee to collect the chemicals, water, and grease utilized in cleaning, as dumping those into the city’s drains can pollute the water supply in the area. For more intricate regulations, you should visit your local jurisdiction so your diner business won’t fail on the inspection.
Grease duct access panel: The best partner for grease ducts
The kitchen is integral to a property, whether in a household or commercial business. Keeping the area clean on every corner is crucial as it can affect the health and safety of various individuals you value. The grease duct access panel serves as your gateway to keep the overall function of your kitchen neatly up and running, far from any risk hazards.