As a restaurant grows, so does the problem of improper grease management. From Myerstown Borough of Lebanon County, Pennsylvania to the City of Killeen, Texas, municipalities everywhere are tightening up on regulations concerning restaurant grease in response to increasing environmental concerns and high sewer maintenance costs.
Some city governments, including San Francisco, are even offering financial incentives to restaurants that install approved restaurant grease containment equipment.
San Francisco Public Utilities Commission Assistant General Manager Tommy Moala says the city spends between three and four million dollars each year removing grease-related sewer clogs. “I’ve seen grease balls as large as Volkswagens inside the sewer,” said Moala.
The City of Austin, Texas closely reviewed its FOG (Fats, Oils, & Grease) standards in 2013 after six incidents in one month alone cost the city $25,000. Violators of Austin’s grease trap maintenance codes are now subject to fines of up to $2,000 per violation per day.
Another day, another grease fire.
A simple Google search for “restaurant + fire” quickly reveals news articles on more than 60 restaurant fires in the U.S. during the past month alone. Take a closer look and you’ll see a definite pattern emerge regarding the cause of those fires — grease buildup. In fact, according to a recent report by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), one in five fires at eating and drinking establishments had “failure to clean” listed as a contributing factor.
The NFPA study showed an average of nearly 8,000 reported fires and $246 million in property damage, with grease related fires costing restaurant owners an average of more than $50 million per year. With statistics like these, it’s easy to see why grease vapor accumulation in hood systems and ductwork is one of the biggest hazards facing commercial kitchens today.
Costly repairs, loss of revenue, and the possibility of temporarily – or permanently – closing your establishment gives even the smallest fire the potential to be a business-ending catastrophe.
Hood Filter Buying Guide
Omaha, NE— January 14, 2014 - HoodFilters.com is a leading supplier of commercial kitchen exhaust products including hood filters, parts, accessories, rooftop grease containment systems, and hood cleaning supplies.
Originating in a restaurant kitchen in 2005, food service operators and restaurant service providers throughout North America now turn to HoodFilters.com for kitchen exhaust needs.
After years of experience in commercial hood filters—including exhaust hood filters—HoodFilters.com has amassed a pool of insider product information, and has compiled an extensive Hood Filter Buying Guide centered around their core product line.
The Hood Filter Buying Guide is the most comprehensive resource available to learn anything and everything about commercial kitchen hood filters.
Connect with HoodFilters.com Social Media
Omaha, NE– December 10, 2013 – Since their beginnings in an Omaha, Nebraska, restaurant kitchen in2005, HoodFilters.com now provides over 1300 commercial kitchen exhaust products including filters, parts, accessories, rooftop grease containment systems, and hood cleaning supplies to food service operations and service providers around the world.
Although HoodFilters.com provides hundreds of kitchen exhaust products, what sets them apart is their focus. They’ve built a business perfecting a small niche of commercial kitchen products and devising specialized solutions. And, after years of designing, testing, and refining their products—they’ve turned themselves into expert product specialists—and want to share that knowledge with you through their social media networks.
When you think of a restaurant kitchen, a loud and chaotic environment full of activity comes to mind. Appetizers cooking in the fryer, wait staff hustling through to pick up their orders, cooks feverishly working over the grill. It’s an exciting place to work…and it’s also a fire danger zone.
It’s estimated that 5,900 restaurant fires occur every year in the United States, resulting in over $172 million in property loss and many personal injuries.
Where do the majority of those fires start? Continue reading
Hood Filters New HVAC Filter Selections
Omaha, NE – October 31, 2013 – Hoodfilters.com, a leading supplier of commercial hood filters and kitchen exhaust products, now sells HVAC filters designed to remove up to 91% of airborne particles in commercial kitchens, including dust, dust mites, pet dander, mold spores, pollen, and smog.
“We are extremely pleased with our first category extension outside of kitchen exhaust products,” said Monty Lockyear, CEO of HoodFilters.com. “It is a product line our customers and resellers have been asking for and a natural complement to our extensive line of hood filters. Now customers can conveniently get their replacement hood filters and air filters in the same order.”
Regular cleaning of your kitchen exhaust system is a vital part of maintaining a safe and efficient cooking operation. Keeping the duct system and hood filters free from excess grease buildup is also required by law, as outlined in NFPA Standard 96.
Simply cleaning the hood filters will not adequately remove grease build up from ductwork or fans, and NFPA Standards require that cleaning is done by qualified professionals, who are properly trained.
So, what should restaurants look for in a hood cleaning service?
It’s no surprise that restaurants have a greater risk of fire than most other types of businesses. Although it might seem like common knowledge, many restaurant owners aren’t fully aware of the severity of these risks, or just how significant fire damage can be.
By examining some of the data presented in FEMA’s 2011 report on Restaurant Building Fires, restaurant owners can get a better understanding of common causes, as well as the potential effects of neglecting to implement a formal fire safety plan.
Did you know that restaurants use about 5 to 7 times more energy per square foot than other types of commercial buildings? This isn’t a big surprise, considering the amount of heating, cooling, cleaning, and energy intensive equipment that goes into a commercial kitchen.
Even though energy consumption is an inevitable part of commercial cooking operation, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t ways to reduce the environmental impact of your kitchen (and save some money on utility bills in the process)!
These are just five of the many steps you can take to make your kitchen more energy-efficient:
For most foodservice operators, what happens on the roof, is a distant concern to the daily challenges happening on ground level. It’s understandable considering all the issues there are to deal with – staffing, food prep, customers, maintenance, purchasing, food cost control…the list goes on and on.
And as the hustle and chaos goes on in the kitchen, there is often a quiet and costly hazard being overlooked on the roof: grease discharge from the upblast exhaust fan.