The key to customer satisfaction and safety is a thorough cleaning process in the commercial kitchen at hotels and restaurants.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 50 percent of foodborne diseases are connected to unclean restaurants. That means, that a sanitary and regularly cleaned kitchen is the key to keeping the diseases at bay.
Beside the normal equipment maintenance in order to preserve the items in your kitchen and ensure a long life, there are other spaces in the kitchen that require a complete cleaning and disinfection on a monthly, weekly and daily basis. Need some advice on how to start and what to pay attention to? We got you covered with some easy tips and solutions for cleaning commercial kitchen equipment and stainless steel fabrications.
Cleaning Countertops and Hard Surfaces in a commercial kitchen
Countertops, working tables and hard surfaces are a hotspot for bacteria growth in the kitchen, as there are the places for food preparation, therefore they should be carefully cleaned a few times a day. First step is removing the items, boxes and storage bins off the surface and wipe the surfaces down with a soft cloth and disinfectant spray. The spray should be about 20-25cm away from the suface and the area should be left to air dry before placing any equipment, storage or food back on the countertop.
In some cases, work is getting a bit tougher! When removing stains, dried food or sauce spills, use a soft brush and warm water with soap to scrub the countertop. Also, when cleaning tile surfaces, use special tile-based disinfectants that can remove bacteria and grime off the grout.
Cleaning Commercial Appliances and Equipment
One of the most important part in kitchen equipment maintenance is the cleaning process. Carefully scrub (when needed) and wipe down all the major appliances as well putting enough attention to the small ones like coffee makers, toasters and microwaves, that also require regular and deep cleaning. You also should conduct deep cleanings every week and month to ensure your units stay in best working condition.
Those steps should be consistent and we recommend you to create a commercial kitchen cleaning checklist for the following equipment:
- Fryers – Boil out your fryer once or twice a week.
- Ovens and ranges – Wipe down the racks, walls and the door as part of your weekly oven maintenance.
- Burners, flattops and cooktops – Scrub down these parts and surfaces using a disinfectant spray or warm soapy water after every shift.
- Grills – Brush off ash and grime off your grates after use. In some cases, you may have to soak them in warm soapy water to break up grease. Also, empty out any drip trays or areas underneath your burner or grates. Those should never be left over night.
- Refrigeration units – Every few months, clean the condenser coils by using a stiff bristle brush and vacuum to remove dust and grime. To prevent sludge buildup, regularly empty and clean the drain pans and tubs.
Cleaning Exhaust Hood system and Vents
The grease and grime in the exhaust vents and hoods are fast building up in busy kitchens and they can restrict airflow in your kitchen space, as well as spreading back the bacterias lying around. Wash out the vent hoods every few months or sooner if you use a deep fryer on a daily basis. Filters should be regularly cleaned and other instructions found in your unit’s service manual, should be carefully followed and if you notice damage on the filters, such as rips and tears, replace them as soon as possible.
Cleaning Kitchen Floors, Walls and Ceiling
The grease, bacteria and other food leftovers can make their way deep into the floors, walls and even the ceiling over time. The kitchen floors should be cleaned daily at the end of the shift, while the walls and ceiling can be cleaned every 2 weeks or even monthly. Here are some tips on how to keep those areas cleaned and shiny.
- Floors – Is not only the grease and the food spills, but the foot stains that ads up to the dirt on the floor.When the day ends, give it a deep cleaning. Start by vacuuming or sweeping the floor to remove dust and hard dirt. Then, mop up your floor with a combination of warm water and either vinegar or a heavy-duty cleaning solution. While a machine helps cut down on time, a mop is still your best choice because it allows you to access hard-to-reach spaces easily. If you need to clean major grease spills, make sure to use a high-grade degreaser instead of a regular cleaning solution.
- Walls and ceiling – You should always wipe off the occasional splatters, but make sure to scrub the walls and ceiling down thoroughly on either a biweekly or monthly basis. Airborne steam and grease not only leave a blemish, but they also can become sources of bad smells. With the appropriate degreaser or cleaning solution, use a wash cloth or soft bristle brush to scrub off the spillage.
Cleaning a Stainless steel sink
The washing sinks and working station is used to clean dishes, utensils but also ingredients on a daily basis. This is vital they are kept spotless clean. After every shift, they should be sprayed with disinfectant and wiped down, including the back splashes on the walls. In order to protect from scale and lime build ups, you should delime the commercial kitchen sinks, sprayers and faucets on a weekly basis with specialised cleaning products.
Commercial kitchens uses a lot of grease, burnt fat and oil which can clog your pipes and drains over a period of time. You should use a special degreaser in order to clear the pipes every few months, which will help with waste reduction and improve downstream water quality.
Cleaning Storage Areas
Two times a year, you should do a deep cleaning to all your storage areas. That should cover all the shelvings, racks, pantries and storage cabinets. After removing all the stocks, you should clean off the dust, crumbs and other debris with a powerful vacuum cleaner and a microfiber cloth. After this first step, you should scrub down the grease, stains and spillages from the area, using a cloth and disinfectant or just warm water with vinegar or soap.
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