Restaurant Risky Business: Critical Safety & Maintenance Item Often Overlooked

Restaurant Risky Business:  Critical Safety & Maintenance Item Often OverlookedRestaurants need to maintain a certain level of cleanliness just to stay in business. However, all too often there’s one part of the restaurant–one of the most important facets of the business–that gets overlooked: the kitchen exhaust duct. In restaurant kitchens, food is usually cooked underneath an air exhaust duct but, in many cases, owners are totally unaware of the importance of cleaning of these exhaust ducts on a regular basis.

Duct cleaning in restaurants is very important for many reasons with fire prevention at the top of the list. Many flammable contaminants, including oil, grease and dust, find their way into the exhaust ducts.  Even a small spark, flame, or just heat buildup could be enough to start a catastrophic fire.

Another reason for the necessity of restaurant duct cleaning is the food itself. Clogged ducts can affect temperatures of the cooking surfaces, making them irregular and causing some foods to be undercooked. Heat could also build up in the kitchen, bringing chilled food ingredients up to dangerous temperatures where they could be susceptible to mold, fungus, and bacteria.

Regularly power washing with an industrial duct cleaner will remove all of the contaminates that can lead to a clogged kitchen exhaust channel. This should be part of a restaurant’s regular cleaning schedule, so that it is not overlooked. Generally, duct cleaning in a restaurant every three months is often enough, but optimally it should be done monthly in restaurants that cook high volumes of food, such as those in the fast food category.

Even beyond keeping exhaust ducts clear, it’s also important to keep a restaurant facility neat, inviting and aptly valued. But, it can be tough to keep up with certain aspects of cleaning maintenance and upkeep. Some structural areas and features are also more challenging to clean than others—particularly on the exterior where the elements, insects, animals and even mold can wreak havoc. Over time, even cobwebs, dirt, leaves and pollen make a property look old, worn, dingy and less than it’s actually worth.

Here’s a quick list of other ways a portable power washer can greatly benefit a restaurant facility:

  • Unclog drains: Many do not realize that instead of calling a plumber and paying handsomely to have a drain line cleared, a pressure washer can accomplish the same task. A special “sewer jetter” nozzle attachment will safely and efficiently unclog and clean a drain.
  • Restaurant Risky Business:  Critical Safety & Maintenance Item Often OverlookedDe-grime grout and tile: A power washer with a rotary brush attachment can be very effective for safely cleaning floor tile and grout without damage.  Use hot water to clean areas where grease and oil stains need to be cleared out, such as a food space or where cars are commonly parked.
  • Clean windows: Nothing diminishes a facility more than drab, dirty windows. Window squeegee attachments make the cleaning effort quick and easy. You can use them with soap and water or glass cleaner; either way you will be able to have a sparkling clean window in half the time it would take with a cloth.
  • Clean central air ducts: Hiring a professional to clean your central air conditioning ducts, or purchasing an air duct cleaning system, can be expensive…and unnecessary since a pressure washer outfitted with a special attachment can get the job done. These cost savings will allow you to breathe easy.
  • Clear gutters: Keeping gutters unclogged and functional is imperative to prevent water overflow that can cause them to detach and, worse, promote rot and rust to the surrounding structure. A standard garden hose just won’t get the job done. A pressure washer with a special gutter nozzle will aptly clear the dirt, leaves and debris in short order…and a ladder need not apply!

·         Wash walkways:  To de-stain and generally clean flat surfaces like driveways, sidewalks and garage floors, a water broom nozzle allows you to evenly wash the surface…and without causing back ache since you can stand up straight and use it.

  • Remove water and muck: Particularly useful in regions where rain and snow create a buildup of water and muck, or when pooled water needs to be drained indoors perhaps from an overfilled planter, flood or plumbing repair, a special “muck scupper” attachment provides for high volume water removal. This rapid response is key to thwart what can be costly moisture-related damage.
  • Quick dry: After you’ve pressure cleaned or removed moisture and muck from an area, or to better prepare a surface for foot traffic so that it’s pristine and also safe from slips and falls, an air blower attachment will help you quickly dry out the space.

A pressure washer is an extremely versatile and easy-to-use tool that can make restaurant safety, cleaning and maintenance a breeze.

Victor Popovics is the CEO of Ultimate Washer, Inc., which offers a wide selection of residential, commercial and industrial heavy duty pressure washer equipment for homeowners, automotive contractors, commercial and industrial users, and pressure washing businesses. Reach Victor online at <> .

The author and/or publisher of this information is in no way responsible for any damage caused to you, your pressure washer, anyone else, your property, or anyone else’s property by trying to implement or by successfully implementing the above-mentioned performance and services.