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Get Answers to Some of the Most Commonly Asked Questions About Flue Cleaning

May 20, 2021

Get Answers to Some of the Most Commonly Asked Questions About Flue Cleaning Do you have questions about the process of flue cleaning? If so, you can read on to get answers. If you do not see your questions answered, or if you would like to invest in the best flue cleaning around, we welcome you to contact Flue Steam at 800-700-FLUE for help.

What is a Flue?

Let us start with the very basics: what is a flue? It is an essential part of a commercial kitchen that works to remove hot exhaust cases that are created. It is essential for both safety and comfort.

What is the Importance of Flue Cleaning?

When food is heated up during the cooking process, oils and other fats turn into vapor and are drawn into the exhaust system. As much as 70% of this grease, which is now airborne, is trapped in the grease filter. The amount that remains passes through the grease filter and can attach to the walls of your exhaust duct and exhaust fan.

The fatty deposits pull in more grease, which makes the problem worse. Your exhaust system will no longer be as efficient when grease builds up, which causes the exhaust temperatures to rise. This can cause grease deposits to liquefy again and cause a flash fire. Cleaning the flue regularly helps remove these grease deposits and can reduce the chance of a flash fire.

How Are Flues Cleaned?

There are two methods that can be used. The first is hand scraping, which is the most common and the simplest option. As the name implies, it involves someone scraping the grease by hand. It can be fairly effective, but it is not perfect – especially because most flues cannot be fully accessed in this way.

The other option is steam cleaning. It does take more work, but it also gets far superior results. It involves steam equipment and high-pressure water cleaners, but they reach every inch of the flue and can therefore provide a much better clean.

How Often Do Flues Need to Be Cleaned?

We generally recommend having it cleaned every three months. However, it depends on the volume of food you sell and the type of food you prepare. Kitchens that do a lot of charbroiling or frying might need to have their flue cleaned every month. A common combination is having the exhaust system scraped monthly and steamed every three months.

Call Today for More Help

If you have questions or need help determining the best way to move forward with flue cleaning, contact Flue Steam at 800-700-FLUE, and we can find the right services and schedule for you.

Do You Know About Your Grease Filter Exchange Service?

May 7, 2021

Do You Know About Your Grease Filter Exchange Service? We are always looking for ways to make our services as convenient for our clients as possible. One of the ways we do this is by offering a grease filter exchange service. Keep reading to learn more about it and then contact Flue Steam at 800-700-FLUE if you would like to get this service set up.

The Importance of a Clean Grease Filter

First of all, let us go over the importance of having a clean grease filter. When it is clean, you significantly reduce the amount of vaporized grease that can end up in your exhaust system ducts. When too much grease builds up, it can cause a flash fire – so removing that grease is very important.

When you have a clean grease filter, it can trap between 70-80% of all grease that passes through them. If a grease filter is already clogged with grease, then it cannot work properly and will not be nearly as effective. Making sure you have clean filters is an important part of fire mitigation.

We Have a Convenient Solution

The good news is that it is not easier – and more affordable – than ever for you to reduce the risk of fire caused by a clogged grease trap. We offer a quick, convenient, and, yes, affordable filter exchange program. It takes all the hassle and inconvenience out of having to keep up with maintenance and replacement for your grease filters.

Learn How the Program Works

We have made our program as simple as possible. You can get started by calling Flue Steam at 800-700-FLUE or emailing us at contact@fluesteam.com to get the service initiated and set up. We will create a regular schedule based on your needs. At that interval, one of our qualified technicians will deliver a fresh, clean filter right to your kitchen. They will take away the old, clogged filters to be cleaned and replace them with a new, clean filter.

We Sell New Grease Filters

If you need a new grease filter, you can purchase one from Flue Steam. We have most sizes of Flame Gard and Kason brand grease filters on hand. We buy filters in bulk, which means we get a lower cost per filter – and we are able to pass those savings on to you.

If you need help with grease filters, swamp cooler service, or flue cleaning, we welcome you to contact Flue Steam at 800-700-FLUE for help.

4 Crippling Problems With Your Kitchen Fire Prevention Defensive Plan

May 7, 2021
4 Crippling Problems With Your Kitchen Fire Prevention Defensive Plan

For over 40 years we have helped many restaurants avoid one of the most serious threats a business can face. You guessed it — fire. We’ve seen a thing or two over the years and can tell you that your kitchen exhaust system is perhaps the greatest asset of your establishment. It is a line of defense against devastating fires and structural damage, but all too often, a few common problems leave this defense mechanism ineffective.

  1. Poor Maintenance and Access Door Locations
    The ducts of the system need to be cleaned regularly, and a thorough cleaning means being able to get into the ducts. Access panels need to be every 12 feet in horizontal ductwork and large enough to support cleaning services. There should be panels installed within three feet of each side of an exhaust fan, and each panel must be grease-tight. Access panels that are poorly placed and poorly designed, and are not kept clean, are a serious fire hazard. Grease, oil and other flammable materials can build up all through the hood, ducts, gutters and filters.
  2. Poor Placement of the Ductwork
    You may not have been able to control the initial placement of the ductwork in the kitchen, but it is definitely something you need to be concerned about now. If there is not enough separation between the ductwork and flammable material, you have an accident waiting to happen. There must be fire-resistant materials (fire insulation) between the ductwork and the combustible materials in the immediate surroundings. Hoods or ducts that are close by to workstations should never be used as storage opportunities. This is another simple fix that leaves devastating consequences when unaddressed.
  3. Poor Expansion Plans With Ductwork
    If your operations have grown and you have added new areas to the kitchen or reconfigured the space, your kitchen exhaust system should have expanded with the rest of the kitchen. This isn’t a problem unless you connected multiple heat sources to the same ductwork. Separate kitchen compartments need to have their own ducts, fans and fire-isolated shafts. Charcoal and wood-fired ovens need to have independent ventilation systems because of the extreme ignition risk.
  4. Poor Understanding of Fire Prevention Measures
    The most common causes of restaurant fires are flammable kitchen materials coming into contact with the cooking flames. This may seem containable, but when the fire gets into the exhaust system and ductwork of the kitchen, as well as the fans and the vents (which are often full of grease buildup), total destruction can be just minutes away. Improper cleaning is just a part of the problem. Failing to have an automatic fire suppression system is another epic safety fail.

Get Back on a Fire Prevention Offensive

You may be thinking that you inherited this kitchen with these problems, and the lack of safety precautions isn’t your fault. While you may not be responsible for the installation problems, it is certainly your responsibility to address these safety concerns now. Fortunately for you, one of the best ways to minimize the risk of fire in the kitchen is through a partnership with Flue Steam. Call us at 800-700-FLUE to find out about our cleaning, repair and inspection services for kitchen exhausts and fire suppression systems.

Warmer Weather Calls for Restaurant Kitchen Swamp Cooler Service in Sherman Oaks CA

March 21, 2021
Warmer Weather Calls for Restaurant Kitchen Swamp Cooler Service in Sherman Oaks CA

Here in California, we already pretty much have pre-summer weather. It’s not super hot just yet, but soon enough (but hopefully not too soon), we’ll be sweating bullets. Maybe you and your restaurant staff already are. Consistently moving around in a kitchen with ovens, stovetops, grills, and other appliances turned on while the weather outside is already pretty toasty can make one’s skin dewy in no time (and not the good type of dewy either).

Before your staff kill over of heat exhaustion, or you get slapped with a hefty fine or lawsuit, let us ask you this: do you have a working and recently serviced swamp cooler in your California commercial kitchen? If you said, “No,” you’re definitely going to want to get that done shortly to avoid the latter consequences.

A Working Kitchen Swamp Cooler Plays a Prominent Role

It might seem like an unimportant additional to your commercial kitchen. However, your kitchen’s swamp cooler offers many benefits.

One of the things your kitchen’s swap cooler can do is help cool down your overheated kitchen when cooking is in full swing. And as contaminants are entering the air in your kitchen mid-cooking, your swamp cooler helps replenish the atmosphere with fresh air that’s safer for your employees to breathe.

This device isn’t just beneficial for your employees but can also benefit anyone dining inside your California restaurant. The last thing you need is a bad review on Yelp for having a stuffy, hot dining room. Your guests are much more likely to feel comfortable when the air in your commercial spot is fresh and cool.

Swamp Cooler Not Working Properly? Get it Serviced Now in Sherman Oaks CA

Say your swamp cooler isn’t working as anticipated. Or, maybe it’s even broken. Whatever the issue might be, know that it can be replaced sooner than you might think and for a great cost.

Flue Steam, Inc. takes delight in servicing swamp coolers and providing any repairs that they might need. With our help, we will leave your commercial kitchen better than ever. Imagine fresh, easy to breathe, less contaminated, and safer air that doesn’t leave you and your staff members feeling hot, sweaty, and dry. You and your hard-working team deserve it, especially now that the weather is warming up fast!

Contact Flue Steam, Inc. today for a service appointment in Sherman Oaks, CA. Our phone number is 800-700-FLUE.

The Best Way to Avoid a Kitchen Fire is to Install an Automatic Fire Suppression System in Glendale CA

March 7, 2021
The Best Way to Avoid a Kitchen Fire is to Install an Automatic Fire Suppression System in Glendale CA

The scariest aspect of owning your own business is witnessing it potentially fail. Especially during year-long-plus pandemic, many restaurant owners are afraid of this reality, but the fate is sadly not all that uncommon. Only the strongest few survive.

While nothing and no form of business insurance can protect your business from not being successful, one of the things that’s important for restaurant owners is ensuring their commercial spot has an automatic fire suppression system. This system can help significantly safeguard a restaurant from a flash fire if it ever were to occur.

Kitchen Fires are More Common Than You Think

Did you know that it’s not all that uncommon for a restaurant kitchen to catch up in flames? I mean, after all, there are so many pieces of cooking equipment in a restaurant that it should come as no surprise that a fire may erupt at any given moment. Not only might a fire occur while your restaurant is open, and cooking is full force, but it can also happen when none of your staff are on duty.

Whether someone is in your restaurant at the time or not, however, there’s always a possibility that a fire could start inside your restaurant. As everyone knows, fires are fast. They’re quick to start and just as fast to spread. Fires are so speedy that even a firefighter with proper ware could become engulfed in the flames and not make it out. This is why it’s critical to have a way to put out the flames quickly before humans have to intervene, like through an automatic fire suppression system.

The thing with automatic fire suppression systems is that it 1) automatically detects a fire before you and your staff might even notice, 2) it doesn’t require a human to be within proximity to work, and 3) it gets to work faster than a human. These systems can truly save your business or even lives.

Get Automatic Fire Suppression System Installation in Your Southern California Commercial Kitchen

Is your restaurant lacking an automatic fire suppression system? Now is the time to get one installed. Would if your restaurant went up in flames in the coming days or weeks? You’d hope to have extra protection and a better shot at having your restaurant survive, which an automatic fire suppression system can offer.

Get an automatic fire suppression system set up with Flue Steam, Inc. soon. Get an appointment by dialing 800-700-FLUE.