Duct Access Doors 101: What You Need to Know?

Duct Access Doors 101: What You Need to Know?

Access Doors and Panels on 20th Apr 2022

Duct Access Doors 101: What You Need to Know?

If there's one thing that many businesses prioritize, it ensures their employees' and investment's safety. Duct access doors and panels are essential in commercial kitchens and restaurants since it helps the cleaners effectively and conveniently remove grease and dust build-up from ducts. While the kitchen presents a high probability of fire and burn-related incidents, you can mitigate this probability by regularly cleaning the kitchen ducts.

Kitchen exhaust duct access doors clean, maintain, and inspect exhaust systems and ducts easier and thoroughly. These grease duct access doors are critical to prevent explosive grease build-up in commercial kitchens.

The NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) mandates regular cleaning in exhaust systems. Depending on your location, other standard grease duct access door requirements may be required for inspection and cleaning.

The safety and cleanliness of commercial kitchens rely on many things, but duct access doors are unquestionably vital in ensuring both. But what exactly are duct access doors, and what benefits can you gain when installing them?

What are Duct Access Doors?

As a property owner, maintaining the quality of your HVAC system and restaurant hood ventilation should be of utmost importance. It would be best to make time for regular cleaning and inspections on your duct system, and while this area is often difficult to reach, duct access doors allow for a convenient passage.

To ensure that the cleaners can fit through the ducts, your building contractor must provide and perform the following for a successful installation:

  • Suitable size opening so that a grown person can crawl inside (at least 20" by 20")
  • Placed once every 12 feet of duct length
  • Made of the same kind of material and thickness as the ducts (16 or 18-gauge steel)
  • Installed 1 1/2 inches away from the edge of the duct

There are several custom grease access panels available from reliable suppliers, such as Flame Gard access doors and Ductmate access doors if you have your preference. The critical thing to accomplish is that the ducts must be easily reachable when it's time for cleaning or maintenance.

Benefits of Duct Access Doors

Despite the numerous benefits of duct access panels, many businesses still overlook their importance. Best Access Doors recognizes the significance of duct panels - thus, we will share the benefits that your business stands to gain should you install one.

1. Reduce Hazards

While safety procedures can mitigate potential risks, some hazards can be difficult to prevent since they are not within sight or are barely noticeable. For example, a facility with a neglected ductwork system can result in bacteria and mold build-up. On the other hand, a commercial kitchen with a run-down exhaust system can potentially put the staff at risk due to the build-up of combustible grease.

Grease deposits in stainless steel duct access doors are highly combustible, making them highly dangerous. Once ignited, a grease fire can move swiftly, resulting in fire system failure since it will not generate the adequate heat required in triggering the system.

Ventilation and ductwork cleaning and maintenance are critical in ensuring that your business will run smoothly. Unexpected incidents and repairs can substantially affect day-to-day operations and are expensive to fix.

2. Fulfill Local Regulations

Depending on your jurisdiction, there may be several fire and health regulations that you need to fulfill for your business. Proper cleaning is necessary for most commercial kitchens, especially in stores where the menu mainly involves deep-frying and food catering.

One of the many standards that businesses must meet is the NFPA-96 Standard which involves the design and capacity of the exhaust system and its location depending on the cooking equipment. Some of the relevant NFPA-96 regulations include:

  • NFPA-96 4.1.8: The regulation requires all exhaust system areas to have access doors to ensure proper cleaning.
  • NFPA-96 5.1.2: All areas that contain grease and exhaust vapors must have a watertight wield. The external wield must be secured until the lower and outermost extent of the ventilation hood.
  • NFPA-96 7.3.1: The regulation states that the access panels must be installed on the most accessible part of the duct system.
  • NFPA-96 7.4.1.1: You need to ensure a 20" by 20" opening in all horizontal ducts to allow a proper human entry point.
  • NFPA-96 7.4.1.3: The openings must be accessible by a 10-feet stepladder or work stage.
  • NFPA-96 7.4.2.2: A proper access for cleaning must be provided if human entry is not possible.

Depending on where your business is situated, grease duct access doors codes in commercial kitchens may vary. Hiring an expert in the local guidelines to advise on safety and best practices on cleaning can make this tedious task less challenging to handle.

Duct access doors and panels provide a convenient and reliable way for cleaners to clean and properly maintain exhaust and HVAC systems. It offers many benefits and helps your business achieve NFPA and local regulations.

Call Us!

Installing a grease duct access door to your commercial kitchen is necessary for maintenance, cleaning, and fire safety. Access Doors and Panels offer an extensive range of grease duct access panels to cater to your needs! Talk to our skilled product specialists or request a personalized quotation by calling (800)-609-2917 today!

20th Apr 2022 Access Doors and Panels