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Commercial Plumbing in Commercial Kitchens: Things You Need to Consider

06 March 2020

Many are not aware that commercial kitchens require special plumbing installations to meet the regulations required for commercial kitchens. However, it’s not just about following the rules. There are ways of fitting out a commercial kitchen that will improve productivity and workflow. A functional commercial plumbing will be able to help you with every process in your commercial kitchen without interruption. Below are some commercial plumbing considerations to keep in mind when setting up a commercial kitchen.

Hygiene and Safety

Hygiene and safety are top priorities for commercial plumbing in commercial kitchens. Wet floors are a real hazard – apart from ensuring your kitchen has appropriate non-slip surfacing, you may need floor drains to help water drain away. Commercial kitchens are required to have hand washing basins that are separate to food preparation and dishwashing sinks. The hot water for hand washing is tempered (i.e. temperature is reduced) for safety but water to the preparation areas will need to be delivered at a higher temperature. Make sure your commercial plumber is addressing these important concerns.

Grease Waste Disposal

If you cook or serve hot food in your commercial kitchen you must have a system in place to capture ‘trade waste’. Trade waste comes from high volumes of waste water which contain a lot more grease than domestic kitchens. Grease traps must be installed into your commercial plumbing system to capture these particles. Ideally, waste water is drained by gravity but in some buildings, a pump will also be needed as part of this trade waste system to push the waste water to the drain. Grease traps need to be emptied and cleaned regularly to avoid overflows and noxious odours. It’s important to note that grease traps are only for treating greasy water. Cooking fats and oils should never be disposed of directly down the drain.

Backflow Prevention

Commercial kitchens backflow prevention devices in to ensure contaminated water cannot flow back into the drinking water supply.  An example of this might be when a hose is accidentally left submerged in a grease trap. There is a theoretical risk that this dirty water may be syphoned back up the hose. Backflow testing and prevention devices eliminate this risk as water can only flow one way through them. Backflow testing devices need to be installed on hose taps, next to grease traps and on dishwashers.

Choosing Fixtures and Fittings

Commercial plumbing is made of more than just pipes. The particular tap ware chosen for commercial kitchens can make food preparation and cleaning easier. For example, spray guns on flexible hoses, pot filler taps, lever action taps and infrared sensor taps are all designed for ease of use in a commercial environment.  Tap ware that is suitable for commercial kitchens will be more expensive than the domestic variety but is designed for usability and durability.

Commercial sinks and preparation surfaces are usually made of stainless steel and are free of joins to make cleaning easier. Sinks must be big enough to submerge all types of equipment used in cooking processes.

Many commercial kitchens will use gas cooking appliances as they create instant and easily adjusted heat. Gas sources will vary depending on location and this may play a role in choosing the right appliance to suit your commercial plumbing system. Your commercial plumber can advise on this. All gas appliances must be installed by a qualified gas fitter who will organise appropriate certification for your installation.

Call LC Harding Plumbing for plumbing needs of your commercial kitchens. We are known to work with some of Melbourne’s largest companies as a licensed and registered Master Plumber for complete Commercial and Industrial Plumbing Services.