Commercial Kitchen Cooling Solutions
June 14th, 2023
Last updated: August 1st, 2023
A commercial kitchen can be one of the hardest environments to keep cool, but it is a welfare issue and it is so important to ensure that you manage to keep everybody comfortable. Commercial kitchens exist in a lot of different environments, we’re not just talking about restaurants and takeaways, a lot of large office blocks may have commercial kitchens, and schools and other environments may, too.
If you’re finding that the heat becomes unbearable in the commercial kitchen then these methods of cooling a commercial kitchen could be very helpful.
Commercial Kitchen Cooling Solutions
Maintaining a cool and comfortable temperature in a commercial kitchen is crucial for the well-being of the staff and the efficient operation of the kitchen. Here are some methods that can help in keeping the kitchen cool even while cooking.
Adequate ventilation is essential to remove heat and steam generated during cooking. Install powerful exhaust fans and hoods above cooking appliances to draw out hot air and capture cooking fumes. Make sure the ventilation system is regularly cleaned and maintained to ensure optimal performance. It can also be a fire hazard if you are not able to keep these well-maintained.
Installing an air conditioning system in the kitchen can significantly reduce the temperature and improve comfort. Commercial air conditioners can effectively cool the space and maintain a pleasant working environment.
It is not cheap to get an air conditioning system installed, nor is it always cheap to run, but there are a lot of different methods that people try to use for cooling their commercial kitchen, and none of them are quite as effective.
Opt for energy-efficient appliances that generate less heat during operation. Choose equipment with built-in cooling features, such as refrigerated prep tables or blast chillers, which can reduce the need for additional cooling methods. Additionally, using induction cooktops instead of traditional gas ranges can help reduce the amount of heat emitted into the kitchen.
People often think that insulation is all about keeping a room hot, but it can also be about keeping cool.
Ensure that the kitchen is properly insulated to prevent heat transfer from outside sources. Proper insulation can help maintain a stable temperature inside the kitchen, making it easier to cool. Insulate walls, windows, and doors to minimize heat infiltration and keep the cool air inside.
Control the Lighting
Natural sunlight can contribute to the heat in the kitchen. Consider installing window treatments like blinds or shades to reduce direct sunlight and the associated heat gain. Additionally, using energy-efficient LED lighting instead of traditional incandescent bulbs can reduce the amount of heat generated by the lighting fixtures.
Regularly inspect and maintain kitchen equipment to ensure efficient operation. Malfunctioning or poorly maintained equipment can generate excessive heat. Schedule routine maintenance checks and promptly address any issues to prevent equipment from overheating and causing unnecessary heat buildup in the kitchen.
Staff Training and Work Schedules
Proper staff training is crucial to maintaining a cool kitchen environment. Train employees on energy-saving practices, such as reducing the duration of equipment use or using lids on pots and pans to trap heat.
Additionally, consider implementing staggered work schedules to reduce the number of staff members working simultaneously, which can help reduce overall heat generated.
Personal Cooling Strategies
Give your employees the chance to cool off. After all, it is the people that really matter in this scenario. Overheating can be a health risk and even a fire risk.
Encourage kitchen staff to stay cool by providing them with personal cooling options. Distribute cooling towels, provide access to cold water or other drinks, and consider investing in portable fans to help employees cool down during breaks. The most important thing is to look after the people using the kitchen and to keep them comfortable.
Is There a Maximum Temperature?
There are often myths that say that buildings are automatically not compliant when they reach a certain temperature. Building compliance is crucial and your business must consider this but there is no single temperature. The government website explains:
During working hours the temperature in all indoor workplaces must be reasonable.
There’s no law for minimum or maximum working temperatures, E.G. when it’s too cold or too hot to work.
However, guidance suggests a minimum of 16ºC or 13ºC if employees are doing physical work.
There’s no guidance for a maximum temperature limit.
Employers must stick to health and safety at work law, including:
- keeping the temperature at a comfortable level
- providing clean and fresh air
Employees should talk to their employer if the workplace temperature isn’t comfortable.
Ventilation and air conditioning is an important investment for UK commercial businesses including those with commercial kitchens, providing benefits for employees, customers, and businesses.
Working across Yorkshire, we cover North Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, East Yorkshire and South Yorkshire and offer a fast, efficient response time to all commercial air conditioning breakdowns and repairs, as well as planned preventative maintenance schedules.