Halo worker polishing the inside of a vent hood in a commercial kitchen

Was My Kitchen Exhaust System Properly Cleaned?

Inspections to Perform After a Kitchen Exhaust System Cleaning

Your kitchen exhaust system is one of the most important and expensive pieces of equipment that you use, so it is very important to make sure that it’s getting the best care. Cleaning the system is a big, complicated and detailed job, so many restaurants hire hood cleaning companies to fix up their system. This is a great way to ensure your equipment is getting great care, as well as letting you focus on the other areas of your restaurant instead of cleaning all the time.

The first few times you use a new hood cleaning company, go over the work they have done and inspect your kitchen to make sure it was cleaned thoroughly. This lets you know if you should rehire that hood cleaning company, as well as making sure that the cleanliness of your kitchen is up to snuff.

Here are a few key areas you should inspect post-cleaning:

1. Look for a polished hood.

Are there streaks or fingerprints? Can you still see splashes of grease? If this is the case, call the hood cleaning company and request that they return for a follow up. You’ll want to also confirm that the inside of the hood is grease-free.

2. Check your kitchen equipment for any new damage, potentially caused by the cleaners.

A reputable cleaning company should notify you immediately of any damage, or after confirmation that damage was caused by their cleaners, will want to make it right.

3. Inspect the floors for leftover grease/film from the cleaning.

This is a safety hazard for your kitchen staff and will need to be cleaned up immediately. A responsible hood cleaning company will mop the kitchen floors surrounding the vent hoods after a cleaning.

4. Check the baffle filter and ducts.

Take off the filter and shine a flashlight into the ducts to check if they were they cleaned to bare metal. If you see any grease or dirt accumulation, have the hood cleaning company to return for a re-clean.

5. If rooftop access or access to the exhaust fans is available, check to make sure that the fan itself was cleaned to bare metal as well. (If the fan is still on, be careful.)

Grease residue should be cleaned up immediately to avoid damaging the fan and its components. While you’re up on the roof, check to see if it has been tidied after cleaning and left undamaged.

6. Check that all grease was collected appropriately.

If any grease has spilled, it needs to be cleaned up immediately to avoid further damaging the roof or the environment.

7. Check all vents (rooftop, hood vents, etc.) for grease, leftover food particles and dirt.

All vents should be thoroughly cleaned and undamaged to ensure your kitchen operation functions safely and properly.

A Complete Kitchen Exhaust Cleaning Inspection

By inspecting these key areas of your kitchen exhaust system after a hired cleaning, you get a better sense on the company you hired and if your kitchen was treated respectfully. Remember, from the beginning, always hire a certified hood cleaning expert you trust.

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