A properly designed kitchen exhaust hood system

A properly designed ventilation system is an important part of any kitchen.

It should give a smoke-free environment while maintaining a comfortable working temperature for kitchen staff. Choosing the right hood ventilation system is very important when it comes to operating a safe and efficient kitchen.

Style, size and exhaust rate are among the factors to consider when specifying the proper hood system for a facility.

Equipment Layout

The type of equipment that will be installed underneath the hood system and where the hood is located will affect both the exhaust rate and decide how much makeup air is required to keep up a balanced kitchen.

Providing a clear picture of the kitchen floor plan and the layout of the cooking equipment helps the design engineer understand what size hood is required as well as the exhaust air measure.

It also helps the engineer clarify where the exhaust duct should be and what will be required in a fire protection system. If equipment schedule and kitchen floor plans are not available, offer a list of cooking equipment with sizes from left to right and verify if walls are located around the hood.

In addition, specify whether the cooking equipment is gas or electric to find out if a gas valve is needed for the fire system Ceiling Specifications.

Provide the design engineer with the ceiling height to decide if a standard height ventilator will fit within the space or if enclosure panels will be required.

The joist height will also help find out what style of ventilator to use, whether the duct work can be above the hood and where the utility connections should be Current Ventilation Code.

Ventilation standards vary from state to state and even from county to county. There are variations of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning (ASHRAE) codes as well, so it is important to find each client’s ventilation code System Balance.

Managing the interaction between HVAC, makeup air and exhaust hoods is important, as the amount of makeup air produced can directly affect the efficiency of kitchen ventilation.

Essentially, if too much air is taken out and not enough air comes in to replace it, a contaminated working environment is created and efficiency is reduced.

The key to proper makeup air is site of discharge and the speed at which it is introduced into the space. It is important that the air is not forced toward the hood, but to allow the hood to draw what it needs when it needs it.

Identifying the proper exhaust rate depends upon three factors: the type and use of the cooking equipment under the hood, the style and geometry of the hood itself, and how the makeup air (conditioned or otherwise) is introduced into the kitchen.

No matter how hard a ventilation hood works, if it releases some captured air and grease back into the kitchen environment, then air quality in the kitchen is reduced.

Not only does sizing and installing the right hood reduce the overall ventilation exhaust rate, but it also ensures maximum capture of containment from cooking equipment.

When the right system is sized and selected, an operation can enjoy lower energy costs to heat or cool the kitchen as well as supply a more comfortable and productive environment for its employees.