If you own a restaurant, you know how important it is to keep your industrial exhaust fans in good working order. Most eateries clean their fans at least every one to three months. There are rules set down by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) that govern how restaurants maintain their exhaust and blower systems. The issue is that exhaust systems attract a tremendous amount of grease, debris, dirt and a wide array of other contaminants. These can cause terrible clogs in the system and lead to even more issues even fires.
Poorly maintained and improperly cleaned systems will run much less efficiently leading to higher energy costs and more changes of blockages. The time between cleanings varies from restaurant to restaurant. There are a number of factors that come into play. They key is to find a good schedule for your establishment and then stick to it. The regularity of your maintenance is what matters, not the adherence to a set schedule.
Daily build up should be kept to a minimum by using a strong degreaser with a power washer. You have to take care when doing this. You need to strictly follow methods of cleaning your equipment that comply with the environmental regulations in your area. Neither the grease nor the chemicals used to remove it should be allowed to drain into the general area. If you do not take care to recapture and properly get rid of everything involved in the process, it can get out and contaminate the area water supply and soil. This will lead to very costly fines and other problems.
Maintenance Tips for Restaurant Exhaust Fans:
Poorly maintained and serviced fans are the most likely to fail. You can use a blower in the interim or you can take care to have a check list that you follow for its proper maintenance. This is much easier and cheaper.
- Always disconnect power source to the fan before you attempt any maintenance on the unit. It is not enough to just turn the unit off, you need to unplug it to be totally safe.
- The ventilator vents and dan discharge need to be kept clean, clear and obstruction free at all times.
- Check the bearings from time to time. For the most part, fan motors are always lubricated but that does not mean the bearings should be ignored. Lubricate the bearings at least every two months, unless you find they need this more often. Make sure you use the correct kind of grease for this.
- Check with the manufacturer if you are not sure. Also, be careful about how much you add. Too much is not a good thing as it will clog up the system but too little will be just as bad as it will not provide the right lubrication.
- Check the tightness of all of your fasteners every time you run though your maintenance check list. Do this before you get the unit started back up.
- Clean your fans often. Clean air causes no real problems but blowers and exhaust fans in restaurants do not typically deal with clean air. Dirt, grease and other debris will cause an imbalance. Inspect the wheel, inlet and anything else that moves in the fan. Clean everything as often as warranted. This will keep it running safely and smoothly.
Keeping air moving properly in restaurants and other businesses is very important. Hospitals, for example, use a laminar fan. This kind of fan will circulate the air in a room 300 times an hour. That is what is needed in that setting. Bathrooms with tall ceilings (about eight feet), need more ventilation than others. Restaurant exhaust fans and blowers keep the air in the building grease and dirt free. What kinds of systems your business needs will depend on what kind of work you do but having the right equipment and keeping it maintained is essential.
You have a lot of options for what fans and blowers and other air movers you can get for your business. Just make sure what you buy is the right size for the work you do and the size building and rooms you need to do it in. Keep it all properly cleaned and maintained and it will serve you well.