Grease extraction System

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Grease extraction System

Post by stephen1974 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:25 pm

Does anyone know if there is a specific legal requirement to have the extraction system over deep fat fryers inspected yearly by a competent person, or is just a general, falls under a broad catagory requirement? I'm thinking food hygiene and fire safety standards. Its been a long time since I dealt with this and 1. I cant remember what was said at the time and b, i never trusted the contractor saying it anyway.

It was something along the lines of inspecting it for a build up of grease which could catch fire and i'm all in aggreance with that as a concept but before I insist on it I need to get my facts right. I've looked at INDG408 and its a bit vague saying some LEV's need checking some dont (Although I dont know if these systems fall under LEV) I looked at cais10 and thats also vague with, look at manufacturers instructions, which at this time i dont have as it was a mate of a mate of a mate type of installation.

I have also read guidance from the fire service that says use TR/19 section 7 as a guidance on frequency but there is nothing i can find that says you must get a competent person in and im wondering if it falls in to that competent person grey area where all such things must be under taken by a competent person but not a specificly qualified one, in which case, you have to argue competence if you do it yourself.

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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by bernicarey » Mon Jan 07, 2019 7:52 pm

You're right about INDG408, that's all about LEV for protection of persons, whereas Kitchen Exhaust Systems are more about smells, steam etc. It's really a big variable dependant on the amount of use, but get it wrong and you can set fire to the building. Therefore the FRS will expect to see cleaning as part of the Fire Risk Assessment process.

I believe this Pub fire in 2013, not too far from where I live, was a Ducting Grease Fire; it's worth watching the last 40 seconds! :lol:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?reload=9&v=nTfnqjox6iE

I believe the ducting falls under the requirements of the RRFSO
Maintenance

17.—(1) Where necessary in order to safeguard the safety of relevant persons the responsible person must ensure that the premises and any facilities, equipment and devices provided in respect of the premises under this Order or, subject to paragraph (6), under any other enactment, including any enactment repealed or revoked by this Order, are subject to a suitable system of maintenance and are maintained in an efficient state, in efficient working order and in good repair.
While initial thoughts might be that this is only applicable to Fire Safety measures, I believe that "under any other enactment" would include the ducting that was put in to comply with Building Regs for ventilation, just as it wouild apply to the maintenance of the building electrics for fire safety.
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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by stephen1974 » Tue Jan 08, 2019 3:56 am

The ducting isn't an issue as its smack bang against an outside wall, so the width of a breeze block and some metal cladding.
Its more the build up of grease thats would be the concern. The main question is really, can we do it ourselves or do we need someone else.

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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by bernicarey » Tue Jan 08, 2019 8:21 am

I see no reason why you can't DIY it, so long as there are people with the competence and the materials/tools required.
You're the person 'on the ground', so how easy would it be?
What materials would be required, are filters cleanable or just replaceable, etc.

There's no specific training course for such cleaning jobs, because the variety of installations is so wide. For example, I've never seen a C&G Course in 'Kitchen Duct Cleaning' advertised.... ;)
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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by witsd » Tue Jan 08, 2019 8:36 am

I've always recommended in FRAs that cooking extraction ducting should be inspected, cleaned and then inspected regularly in order to determine an appropriate periodic cleaning regime.

Ideally the filters should be working properly (and being cleaned / replaced regularly) in the first place, making the need for cleaning a fairly rare occurrence.
We often think that when we have completed our study of one we know all about two, because 'two' is 'one and one.' We forget that we still have to make a study of 'and.'


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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by Andyblue » Tue Jan 08, 2019 10:47 am

I'd agree with Witsd (Above) about cleaning, inspecting etc regularly. Perhaps if there is no scheduled system in place, you could start off with an arbitry period, let's say 3 month, if its still clean / operating correctly then extend to 4 months and so forth with a caveat that the maximum period is not more than 1 year. Are the filters meant to be cleaned at specific times either of usage or overall time? Occasional use being quite different to intensive use every day.

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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by ssmith65 » Tue Jan 08, 2019 2:59 pm

It will depend on the environment and what is being cooked as well. I spent a number of years working at one of the popular fast food outlets and the amount of grease extracted from the AC system was unreal. In the old systems we had to have new doors cut into the ducting so we could ensure these areas were cleaned and inspected. You could fill buckets with with the grease that came out of the AC, there is then the other end of the scale were you might have a small kitchen area were you are mainly exhausting just steam and so the filters wont be very greasy at all so you might find that a six monthly or yearly clean could be sufficient but again this will all come down to your fire risk assessment.

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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by stephen1974 » Tue Jan 08, 2019 4:47 pm

Thanks all. I'll have a good look at them tomorrow and see what I can see. Then put a schedule in place for inspection and cleaning. Probably six months as the fryers are in use 5 days a week every week, though not all day.

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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by Mrs P » Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:24 am

If you contact your local food hygiene team in the environmental health department they'll be able to give you some advice. You're right, there are hygiene as well as fire safety aspects to this.

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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by witsd » Wed Jan 09, 2019 11:17 am

As long as you can show that there's a valid logic backing up the periodicity, then you ought to be fine.

If it's still nice and clean when the second PPM date rolls around, take a photo and then extend the next interval until it's actually worth doing, as Andyblue described.

Keep records though, just in case. ;)
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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by Messy » Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:21 pm

Article 17 of the Fire Safety Order does not directly apply as it relates broadly to firefighting infrastructure

Article 8 imposes a duty to take general fire precautions - any prosecution who involved this article I reckon

In relation to competency to clean ducting, Article 18 states the Rest Person must appoint people to help with the preventative and protective measures, and they must be competent.

It goes on to define competency as having "sufficient training and experience or knowledge and other qualities to enable him properly to assist in undertaking the preventive and protective measures".

For servicing a fire alarm system, of course formal qualifications are necessary to prove competence. For cleaning ducting (depending how complex it is of course) I am not sure how much competency is required. Some instruction, and a standard to be followed perhaps.

As for how often, I saw some guidance once which gave a estimated frequency period based on what was bing cooked. A Chinese restaurant operation 12 hours a day and 7 days a week would get more cleaning than a sushi restaurant open 5 days a week for 8 hours. I think it may have been in the Heating and ventilation association's TR/19 guide?

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Re: Grease extraction System

Post by stephen1974 » Wed Jan 09, 2019 10:11 pm

Opened it up today and whilst the filters and inside looked reasonable, the motor and fan cover for the fan were absolutely caked black with grease. I asked if that had ever been cleaned and I was told no as they couldn't access it (bolted in place). I don't know enough about these things to know if it was actually bad or if this is simply how things are, but it looked bad.

Ment to take a photo but other things cropped up and i didnt have my camera to hand.

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