Hood filters are an important part of the commercial kitchen. As they work to remove grease vapors from the air, they get clogged with grease, and if they aren’t cleaned on a regular basis, they can cause grease fires, that’s why it’s important to know when to clean your hood filters and when to replace them. This month we’re working with Component Hardware Group (CHG) and Flame Guard to bring you cleaning and replacement tips for your hood filters. Let’s start with cleaning hood filters.
Cleaning Hood Filters
In a commercial kitchen, hood filters should be cleaned regularly to ensure they work efficiently. Before removing the hood filter, make sure to cover equipment below the hood with a cloth to try to minimize mess. If the hood filters are cleaned on a regular basis, cleaning could be as easy as passing the filters through a high-temp dishwasher. However, if the filters are galvanized or aluminum, passing them through the dishwasher isn’t a good option, because there is risk of corrosion and color change (the golden patina). Instead, soak the filters in a tub of hot water with the recommended amount of commercial degreaser. Soak time will depend on how bad the build-up is, but at a minimum you should be soaking them for at least 30 minutes and up to overnight for harsher grease build-up.
For those filters that won’t come clean with the above methods, it’s time to use a bit more elbow grease. You’ll want to scrub with a reliable scrub brush until the metal color comes back and the grease patina is gone. Once you’re done scrubbing, simply rinse the degreaser away, soak the filters in water and dish detergent for about 20 minutes, then rinse everything away until the water runs clean again. When the hood filters air dry, go ahead and replace them.
Note: Before you stick your hands in degreaser solution, make sure to wear gloves to protect your skin.
When to Replace Hood Filters
If scrubbing the hood filters is no longer working to remove the patina or you start to see signs of wear and tear, like corrosion or dents, its likely time to replace the hood filter(s). Before you choose to replace your hood filters, you should take a look at our hood filters buying and maintenance guide and our video on how to measure for replacements.Shop Flame Guard Hood Filters