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Commercial Hoods

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15 replies to this topic

#1 gfron1

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Posted 10 December 2007 - 09:26 AM

I'm in the final steps to certifying my store's kitchen for non-grease cooking. So my Fire Marshall said I can get by with a Type II hood. I took this to mean cheaper than other suppression hoods. But I have two factors that will play into my decision.

First is cost. We're a low use kitchen that is strapped right now, so a fancy shmancy hood is not necessary.

Second is output. Our Fire Marshall suggested we just knock out a window and vent out the window. This is great since we won't need to put holes in our ceiling and roof. But does such a vent exist - meaning a vertical instead of horizontal hood?

So, any guidance out there from someone who knows what all of this means - I'm very lost and not knowing how to proceed.

Chef, Curious Kumquat, Silver City, NM

#2 andiesenji

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Posted 10 December 2007 - 11:17 AM

I can only suggest that you should not be "penny-wise and pound-foolish" and settle for less that you actually need, in spite of what your local fire expert says.

You need to exhaust the heat from the kitchen - you are in a area where this is going to be critical in the summer (a very long summer) months.
Without adequate heat evacuation your airconditioning costs will skyrocket and you will end up paying far more that you can possibly save by a less than adequate installation.

Get the advice of a pro who will be able to estimate the kitchen heat output and recommend something appropriate. Your fire department guy probably means well but I doubt he has spent enough time in a working kitchen to know the long-term costs of pinching pennies.

There are through-the-wall exhaust systems made for installation in multi-story commercial buildings and they do not require huge holes. But the machinery to move the heat has to be a certain capacity or you will have significant problems in the future. If you can't work in a kitchen because of excess heat, you will be very unhappy.

I live in a desert area with summer temps that are often in triple digits and I opted for a heavy-duty system because I have had experience with less than optimum systems.
"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett
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#3 tsquare

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Posted 10 December 2007 - 11:18 AM

There are hoods that vent out side walls. You need a mechanical contractor. I would try to get in writing that you don't need a Type I hood. Amazing how they change their minds at inspection.

Much less expensive. If you aren't using a deep fryer, more than a certain amount of equipment (probably depends on jurisdiction), etc, should be okay. Make sure the window you think you are venting out of is appropriate - there may be restrictions on how close to a property line or another structure or other openings.

Good luck!

#4 kbjesq

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Posted 10 December 2007 - 02:41 PM

When I was last confounded by venting issues, I called the "Select Appliance" help desk for assistance. I have to say that the person I spoke with - I believe his name was Tim - was extremely knowledgeable and helpful. We had several conversations regarding venting. And while I eventually ordered a vent hood from him, I have to say that he did also recommend brands that he does not sell. So I didn't get the impression that he was just trying to "sell" me on his products, but rather, he seemed genuinely interested in helping.

You will note that this company sells both commercial and residential appliances. The website is here.

I would definitely call Select Appliance and run it by them for input. Here is the contact info:

(888) 235-0431 (help desk hours: 9:00AM - 5:00PM Pacific time, Monday - Friday)
Phone: (650) 588-9100
Fax: (650) 588-9108

All postal correspondance should be sent to:
Select Appliance Customer Care
159 W Harris Ave.
South San Francisco, CA 94080-6008

#5 gfron1

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Posted 10 December 2007 - 09:43 PM

Thanks for these tips. Yes, I'm a cheapskate at hearts, so I hear your words of caution loud and clear andiesenji. Its tempting to go cheap now and fix up later - but we all know that means, go cheap now and forget to fix it up later. I'll dig a bit deeper and see where this goes.

And tsquare - we're doing no grease work at all - and have assured our fire inspector and food inspector, so they're totally going off of my word. And I've talked to my potential chef and she is on board with that because she doesn't want to deal with grease either...that's why they're letting us off easy.

Chef, Curious Kumquat, Silver City, NM

#6 Tony Boulton

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 10:00 PM

I own a retail kitchen store and I am about to move to a new location. One of the things that is going to be important for our future success is a kitchen area for classes. Now we are not talking huge here, the whole store is only 1,500 sq. ft. I just need a stove top and an oven for cooking and baking. But from experience of previous discussions with health department folks, they tend to try and insist that you equip it for serving 100 tables every morning noon and night, rather than several classes a month for a dozen or so people. My research tells me that there are different types of hoods, "dry" hoods of a modest size up to hoods that sing and dance and have a team of elves resident inside them to automatically wash the insides during the night. My perception of what is needed is something that would exist in a restaurant of the type where they cook in front of you at the table (such as Benihanas). Can anyone out there in restaurant land offer me some advice? Do we need a grease trap or just a dry hood? What size? Do I try to Google for suppliers? How expensive are they to install?

#7 Tony Boulton

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 02:29 PM

Now that this message has been merged with a previous topic, there are a couple of things I should clarify.

It will be an island location, so it will be ducted through the roof.

And we won't be doing any deep frying, just frying meat, fish, etc. in a skillet and some pressure cooking.

As we are talking cooking demonstrations/classes, the period of time we shall be cooking will be limited.

Any tips or advice would be most welcome.

#8 Edward J

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 09:13 PM

The others have given you some very good advice. Regarding the venting, I have only one question:

Who are your neighbors? That is to say, who is in the vicinity of the exhaust fan?

No matter how elaborate or expensive a well designed venting system is, if the wind is blowing the wrong way, your neighbors will smell whatever it is you're cooking. If your neighbors are residential, your life will be "Bleep", if they are commercial, they may be more forgiving.

The funny thing is, the most greasiest spoon can have the worst venting system, and a new condo tower can go up and complain all they want about smells, but the greasy spoon was there first, so the complaints won't go very far. A new, well designed system will get complaints as well, and becasue the neighbors were there first, the complaints get listened too......

#9 Tony Boulton

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Posted 14 November 2009 - 07:45 PM

Thanks Edward, but we are sufficiently far away from the (rather exclusive) local residential property for it not be a worry to anyone. And we have a restaurant 2 doors away.

#10 howsmatt

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 07:38 PM

I'm in the process of buying my first restaurant (a 1100 sq. ft. lunch focused place). I was recently told I may need a commercial hood if I plan on serving more than 9 people, even if I only use a residential stove and nothing else. The place has an exhaust pipe from a coffee roaster. Can I hook up my commercial hood to this? It seems like it was prepared for that purpose but I don't know how thick or strong the steel is or has to be. Anyone know? If anyone can direct me to someone helpful or knowledgeable in Montreal, that would be great too as I am having a hard time getting a straight answer from kitchen supply people and government people. Thanks.

coffee small.jpg
small pipe.jpg

Edited by howsmatt, 01 August 2011 - 07:41 PM.

#11 qrn

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 09:03 PM

Just looking at it I would doubt it..the vent pipe for a commericial hood would have to be much,much larger in diameter(guessing at least6 inches)....

#12 Norm Matthews

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 09:31 PM

Commercial hoods vent all the way out the roof. Most domestic hoods just vent to in between the walls. Having one installed is not cheap.

#13 jmolinari

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 06:35 AM

I doubt it. My vent hood is a home 30" unit ducted for up to 1200CFM and it's a massive 10" duct. That duct looks tiny.

#14 Edward J

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 09:35 AM

You're forgettin a few important aspects.

1) You need to have a mechanical engineer's drawing to submit to city hall/municipal office. Period. End of discussion. Failure to comply and you will not get an occupancy or business license, and if the insurance co. or landord ever finds out that you're operating without the proper licenses in place, well then....

2) You need to have a fire supression system for the hood. The cavity behind the filters of the hood is called the plenum, and this needs a fire nozzle as well, some municipalities require a nozzle inside the shaft as well. For every piece of equipment you will need one dedicated nozzle as well

3) You need to have make-up air. The fan removes a certain amount of air, say 30 cu feet per minute. This has to be replaced, or you will all need scuba diving equipment. How is this air replaced? Some municipalities will allow an open window in the kitchen, some require a separate fan bringing "tempered air"--that is, air-condtioned/heated--air into the kitchen. Check with your municipality/city hall.

4) The shaft must be designed for the hood. The shaft is the "pipe" from the hood to the fan. It must have a certain fire rating and comply with fire codes. You will need a fan at the end of this shaft to draw out the air. Where will this fan be located, and does is it accesible for the mandated cleaning that it requires?

Your best bet?
Call in a mechanical engineer that does this type of work for a peek and a quote. It will be cheaper in the long run and save you from headaches an anguish fom the city boys, the fire boys, and the insurance boys.

#15 howsmatt

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 09:46 AM

Thats what I feared. I don't want to try to afford a commercial hood, especially given most of the cooking I will be doing could be done on a 4 burner, , even residential stove. The law only came into place in 2009 and I'm hoping to grandfather in on the previous owner who was allowed to have electric stove with no commercial hood. The govt person is supposed to call me back today to tell me if this Is ok.

In the end most of my items will be done in the turbochef. Thanks for all your help, this place is an amazing resource.

#16 dcarch

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Posted 02 August 2011 - 12:49 PM

Don't forget the grease trap.