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Should I have my range hood inspected yearly?

Although several of the kitchen hood inspection requirements change based on the type as well as the frequency of cooking in commercial kitchens, there are some requirements that are common to each kitchen hood.

All hoods should be cleaned and scrubbed, with no grease or oil or any other contamination left on the vents or hoods. Furthermore, kitchen hoods can’t be covered in any way, as this will prevent them from trapping grease more efficiently.

Ultimately, all commercial kitchen hood inspections must be carried out by a licensed fire protection company on an annual basis or 6-month basis. If the kitchen has high grease accumulation, then it will need more inspections and cleanings.

Why Do I Need an Inspection?

Preventing kitchen fires is something that should be prioritized in a kitchen and one way to do that is by doing regular inspections, testing, service of the hood. Regular inspections of the system will:

beautiful kitchen with a new range hood
  • Make sure the suppression system is ready to go in a fire’s case
  • Prevent unwanted discharge
  • Make you calm that your kitchen is protected
  • Make sure compliance with fire code and insurance requirements
  • Prevent fines because of noncompliance with code

How often Should You Have Range Hoods System Inspections?

NFPA 96 says that you should complete hood inspections every 6 months by a licensed company. Therefore, twice a year, certified fire safety professionals must make sure if there’s a fire in a commercial kitchen, your system will activate, put the fire out, and shut off the gas line or electricity running to the tool.

Inspect & Service Hood Systems Often

When your kitchen vent hood, deep fryer, range hood, grill hood exhaust system is dirty/greasy, it can’t do its job, and also the kitchen suppression system inspection can be rendered useless when you will need it most. To make sure that your hood is operating at the best levels, you should get the services of a reputable commercial company for inspections or the kitchen hood cleaning service.

Professional inspections should be done at least semi-annually or on a yearly basis

Kitchen hoods should be inspected by a trained/certified technician on a yearly basis or 6-months basis. It does not only make sure that the system is in the best operating condition, but a certified professional will also provide genuine replacement parts and up-to-date manuals. The professionals will conduct an in-depth inspection as well as testing of all the components of the range hood system in the kitchen, including:

  • Appliance, plenum nozzles, duct, nozzle blow-off caps
  • Link line and detectors
  • Functionality and accessibility of actuators, control components
  • Functionality of remote pull station
  • Condition of pressurized as well as non-pressurized tanks
  • Verification of test dates for cylinders/regulator
  • Tightness of piping
  • Functionality of all electrical interlocks

The range hood in the kitchen must be examined on a six months basis or yearly basis to inspect for any defects. You should inspect your hoods if you want that your range hood systems work in the best possible way.

Conduct your own in-house inspection monthly

Although it’s needed that a trained and certified technician check your system every 6 months, the owner needs to perform a basic visual inspection each month.

  • Inspect that all nozzles are pointed directly at the right appliance
  • Inspect buildup of grease/dirt within the hood and duct
  • Make sure the system gauges are in the green and inoperable range
  • Ensure the tamper indicator is intact
  • Make sure the pull station is easily accessible and not blocked
  • Look at the tag/verify the date of the last professional inspection

Semi-Annual Inspections

The NFPA needs that kitchen hood systems are checked every six months by a certified professional. Few things performed during a usual kitchen hood inspection include:

  • Inspect nozzle & conduit locations
  • Ensure piping is tight & secure
  • Clean nozzles
  • Inspect pressurized cylinder gauges and hydrostatic test dates
  • Test the manual pull station
  • Cut a terminal test link to make sure a functional automatic actuation cycle
  • Inspect for the cutoff of electricity and gas when the system activates
  • Replace any components required like center link housings, fusible links, system cartridges
  • Functionality of electrical interlocks
  • Report deficiencies that are found while the inspection is being done

After the semi-annual inspection is performed by a professional, documentation needs to be provided to make sure that your system is compliant. This involves tagging, notes of any repairs, and an inspection report.

Monthly Inspections

Although semi-annual inspections need to be performed by trained professionals only, the building owner is responsible for monthly visual inspections of the system. These inspections involve a visual inspection of gauges, nozzles, tamper indicator. The owner should look for grease residue in the hood/duct and also make sure that the pull station isn’t blocked.

Having your kitchen hood system inspected

Setting up your annual inspection can be on the back burner of your list of things to do for a restaurant, but you need to make sure that it’s checked by a certified company at a frequency that has been set by industry standards depending on your kitchen.

As a reminder, here are the frequencies to have your kitchen hood checked, as set by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) for all Houston-based kitchens:

Businesses that work all day and night or cook more often should have the kitchen hood inspections performed on a quarterly basis.

Businesses like sit-down restaurants that make food at moderate levels need to have kitchen hood inspections performed twice a year.

Organizations like churches that operate occasionally require hood inspections performed once a year.

The inspection company will make sure that your kitchen hoods are being scrubbed as well as cleaned down to the bare metal, with no grease/oil contamination left on the hoods. The aim of kitchen hoods is to collect and trap grease efficiently preventing any breakout fires in the restaurant. But the vent hoods require to be cleaned and checked regularly so they do not become a fire hazard. Accumulated grease can catch fire and lead to the devastating loss of life and property.

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