Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Duct Cleaning: Advice from Commercial Kitchen Cleaners Ingot

Duct Cleaning: A guide to fire safety in restaurants and catering premises from commercial kitchen cleaners Ingot Services 

Taking Steps to Ensure Fire Safety in Commercial Kitchens

Fires are a risk which people operating commercial kitchens must constantly guard against. There are various regulations which need to be borne in mind, covering everything from alarms to duct cleaning.

Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, it's a legal requirement for business owners, including those running catering establishments, to carry out a fire safety risk assessment. This involves identifying any potential hazards and planning escape routes in the event of a fire. These routes must then be kept clear of obstructions, and fire doors must not be wedged open. Fuel and combustible items must be safely stored, well away from any potential sources of heat.

Staff also need to be trained in how to react if fire does break out. If five or more people work in the premises or the restaurant is licensed, then records have to be kept of the fire risk assessment, which is also good practice in any case.

Fire Alarms: Having working fire alarms is a legal obligation and restaurant owners have been fined for failing to do this. There have been cases of people in restaurant kitchens turning off alarms to avoid them being set off during cooking, but this is a dangerous practice, as well as being illegal. It is possible to install specialist alarm systems which won't be set off by ordinary cooking, and to site them in a way which will also avoid this. 

Fire Extinguishers: It is essential that all restaurants have fire extinguishers installed, which must be suitable for the size of premises and the type of cooking carried out. You will need at least one wet chemical extinguisher and a fire blanket. Increasingly, restaurants are choosing to install specialist fire suppression systems, which can both detect a fire in a commercial kitchen and immediately act to extinguish it. These systems are especially advisable if you use deep fat fryers. 

Safe Use of Equipment: All equipment in commercial kitchens needs to be installed in line with manufacturers' instructions, but that is just the start. The equipment must also be well-maintained. Gas Safe registered engineers are needed to service gas cookers, while an automatic shut-off at high temperatures is a valuable precaution for fryers. Keeping cooking equipment clean and avoiding grease and fat build-up is also essential, not only from a hygiene point of view, but to avoid fire risks. This is one of the many reasons why industrial oven cleaning and regularly-scheduled deep kitchen cleaning are both musts.

Kitchen Extract Systems: Extract duct systems in restaurant kitchens must be properly installed, with the correct clearance from ceilings. Kitchen ductwork also needs to be kept clean and free of dirt and grease build-up, which poses both health and fire hazards. As experts in duct cleaning, Ingot can advise you on the best cleaning schedule for your kitchen extracts. We issue certificates and keep full records for your peace of mind so you can prove that your extraction system is being kept properly clean. 

Ingot's industrial and commercial cleaning service is available to businesses across the UK, including those in Ipswich, Suffolk, Norwich, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire, Essex and London. Get in touch now to find out more about our duct cleaning service.

Commercial Kitchen Cleaners: Keeping Restaurant Equipment Clean with Ingot

Commercial Kitchen Cleaners: Ingot's guide to choosing top items of equipment for a restaurant and arranging deep kitchen cleaning

5 Top Items of Equipment for a Restaurant Kitchen

Whether you are opening up a new catering establishment or updating an existing kitchen, it is important to make sure you have equipment which will do the job. Commercial kitchen cleaners Ingot have drawn up a list of some of the items which will help to keep you ahead of the field.

  1. Industrial Ovens. The type of oven you choose will depend on the types of food you want to prepare – and also on the space you have available. Convection ovens not only cook more quickly than conventional ones, but also spread the heat more evenly, so you save time and get better results too. Induction hobs are similarly effective. Combination ovens are highly versatile pieces of equipment for a restaurant kitchen, while specialist pizza ovens can be used not just for pizzas, but also for other large dishes.
  2. Deep Fat Fryers. While fried food admittedly isn't the healthiest option on the menu, it is still popular, and most restaurant kitchens will need commercial fryers. These items can be difficult to keep clean, so you need to choose a quality model which can easily be dismantled when necessary for kitchen deep cleaning.
  3.  Commercial Dishwashers. Some smaller restaurants have a designated team of staff who wash up all the dishes by hand, but this is very time-consuming. Specialist commercial machines can wash at much higher temperatures and get through large volumes of crockery. It's possible to buy smaller commercial dishwashers if space is at a premium. Choose an energy-efficient machine which is also high on performance as dirty dishes and cutlery can damage the reputation of your restaurant.
  4. Fridges, Freezers and Ice-Making Machines. In a commercial kitchen, refrigerators and freezers are needed which can maintain a steady temperature. This will guard against any danger of food becoming too warm when the machines have to be opened and closed regularly. A supply of ice is another kitchen essential, especially in summer, with many uses ranging from food storage and preparation to popping cubes in a drink. Various different types are available to choose from, including cube and flake ice machines.
  5. Stainless Steel Sinks. These will be in constant use, with sinks needed not just for washing dishes but also for hand-washing and food preparation. It is essential that you plan your kitchen with enough sinks, conveniently placed, at the right distance from food prep areas, and that they can easily be kept clean. 

Installing all these essential items, and others in your kitchen, is just the start. To perform properly and to give a lasting service, they need to be kept in good condition. This means drawing up a regular cleaning and maintenance schedule, as well as calling in a kitchen deep cleaning company at regular intervals.

As commercial kitchen cleaners with many years of experience, Ingot can advise you on the best kitchen deep cleaning schedule for your premises. We offer a full range of kitchen equipment cleaning services including industrial oven cleaning, arranged at a time to suit you, and we provide full certification. Our service covers all of the UK, including Bristol, Newcastle, Cambridgeshire, Essex and London.

Commercial Kitchen Cleaners – Contact Ingot Services now to find out about our specialist equipment cleaning service