Not only is the proper care and maintenance of your commercial kitchen equipment as important as your guests’ dining experience, but the safety and health of your patrons are dependent on the cleanliness of your kitchen and the equipment you operate.
It is therefore essential to keep your equipment in good condition to ensure its optimal functionality, safety and durability so that your kitchen runs smoothly and your investment remains in tip-top shape.
The tips below will help safeguard against mishaps in the kitchen, ensure your equipment retains its quality, minimise replacement costs, and ultimately contribute to a healthier bottom-line.
1. Cleaning and Maintenance Schedule
Plan for regular cleaning and maintenance duties as well as inspections on a weekly schedule. Ensure that it is structured with specific days and responsible person. It is extremely important that this is verified by a manager to ensure that a high standard of compliance is maintained. Indicate the correct procedure and correct chemicals.
2. Clean as You Go
We know how busy a kitchen can get – especially during service. Spills occur frequently, and best practice is to immediately action. Use a multipurpose cleaner with the correct cleaning equipment. Leaving spills unattended can result in safety risk and damage to your new equipment.
3. Use Food Safe Approved Chemicals
To keep your commercial kitchen tools and equipment in top condition, use SABS Approved Food Safe Chemicals, commercial, non-abrasive, surface cleaning and sanitising products in your daily cleaning routine. Always follow the grain of the steel when wiping or polishing your appliances, and be sure to rinse any product residue completely off the surface, and buff dry to keep your high-quality stainless steel equipment smudge-free and shining.
4. Only Buy from Trusted Suppliers
Acquiring good quality equipment for your kitchen could be a fairly large initial investment. It is therefore essential that you buy your equipment from a trusted supplier to ensure it is installed properly, and that a warranty and effective after-sales service and maintenance program is provided.
Should your equipment become defective, or a part needs to be replaced, a trusted supplier is more likely to stock, or able to source the required spare faster than a less credible or known supplier. This added value is significant, as malfunctioning equipment causes downtime in the kitchen which leads to inconsistent output and profit margins being pressurised.
Whilst second-hand equipment is cheaper, it is of lesser quality, is generally not guaranteed, and offers no installation service or back-up technical support. Buying second-hand equipment might save you some money initially but could cost you far more in the long run. Buying brand new, superior quality kitchen equipment from a trusted supplier, is certainly one of the wisest business decisions you will make.
5. Take the Time to Inspect
No equipment stays new, especially when it is subjected to the rigours of commercial foodservice. But simple maintenance performed regularly, can prolong the operational life of your equipment.
- Dishwasher – Ensure the filter is clean, and replace it after every 20 cycles. Also, refill the tank after every 20 cycles to ensure dishes come out clean every time. Clean the interior tank with a manufacturer’s approved cleaning solution to help reduce bacteria for a deeper clean.
- Inspect for any gas leaks – this should be done every four to six weeks.
- Clean combustion fans – fans should be cleaned at least once a month.
- Boil out the fryer – boiling out the fryer every week can help prevent carbon deposits, fat build-up and protect food quality.
- Refrigerator – Check your refrigerators’ seals regularly, to ensure these are properly sealed to maintain the correct temperature. This will lower the risk of spoiled food.
- Griddle and Splashguard – Routinely inspect the burner area for cracks and seam separations, as these can limit the venting area and cause smothering of the burner flame.
- Stove and oven – Check for residue on oven fan blades, as this could reduce the air circulation.
Since there are so many maintenance and cleaning tasks to keep track of, follow the handy checklist below to stay on top of it all.
- Sweep and mop the kitchen floors
- Wipe down walls and sanitize work surfaces
- Clean those griddles, fryers, and grills using a SABS Approved Degreaser
- Microwaves to be wiped down and sanitized inside and out.
- Inspect Teflon Sheets on Toaster, clean and sanitize.
- Clean soda fountain dispenser heads
- Clean the sinks and let them dry overnight
- Clean uniforms and aprons to be worn daily
- Refill all needed consumables such as paper towel, chemical spray bottles and sanitizing liquid
- Ensure that all refuse bins are left clean and sanitized overnight.
- Deep Clean Ovens and stove using a degreaser and appropriate cleaning equipment.
- Sanitize walk-in fridges and freezer shelves
- Use a drain cleaner on the floor drains
- Remove canopy filters and drip trays, use a degreaser to clean
- Deep Clean equipment for built-up grime.
- Thoroughly wash walls
- All specialised cleaning to be scheduled for ceilings, vents, compressors and fridge coils.
Do You Need Industrial Kitchen Equipment?
Caterware Connection offers a variety of high-quality commercial catering equipment. We supply and install cooking equipment for restaurants, canteens, hostel accommodation, retirement homes, bakeries, remote sites, and many more.