Most people think of grease as a liquid, but grease can travel by vapors and smoke. If the exhaust effluent is properly filtered, a large percentage of the grease is
removed from the airstream greatly reducing the amount of grease that will stick to the inside of the kitchen exhaust system and reduce the risk of a grease duct fire.
Therefore, grease filters are considered one of the first lines of defense for restaurant safety, especially because grease is so highly flammable. Replacing and maintaining a restaurant’s grease filters is an important step in reducing the risk of kitchen grease fires.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Code 96 is the standard for ventilation control and fire protection of commercial cooking operations. Here are some of their fire safety codes described in NFPA Code 96, specifically for grease filters, or ‘Grease Removal Devices.’
NFPA 96 Fire Codes for Hood Grease Filters for Grease Removal Devices:
1 – Listed grease filters, listed baffles, or other listed grease removal devices for use with commercial cooking equipment shall be provided.
2 – Listed grease filters and grease removal devices that are removable but not an integral component of a specifically listed exhaust hood shall be listed in accordance with UL 1046.
3 – Mesh filters shall not be used unless evaluated as an integral part of a listed exhaust hood or listed in conjunction with a primary filter in accordance with UL 1046.
4 – Grease filters shall be listed and constructed of steel or listed equivalent material.
5 – Grease filters shall be of rigid construction that will not distort or crush under normal operation, handling, and cleaning conditions.
6 – Grease filters shall be arranged so that all exhaust air passes through the grease filters.
7 – Grease filters shall be easily accessible and removable for cleaning.
8 – Grease filters shall be installed at an angle not less than 45 degrees from the horizontal.
Invest in the safety of the restaurant and commercial kitchen equipment by scheduling regular cleaning by an IKECA Certified Professional. Keeping a restaurant in compliance of NFPA 96 codes regarding fire safety can help prevent unnecessary damage to equipment and avoid fire risks.