When purchasing an exhaust fan for your restaurant, it is important that you be knowledgeable about the model you choose, which features it offers, how the exhaust fan will affect your kitchen’s functionality, and how durable it will be.
Some exhaust fans may be ideal, while others will be lacking in certain areas. There are, however, many makes and models to choose from, each with its own benefits and drawbacks.
1. Direct drive upblast
A direct drive upblast fan allows for versatile installation, as it can be installed in either the roof or the wall. These exhaust fans generally run very quietly, and are made of aluminum which means they will not rust or become damaged from the weather by chipping. The unit is enclosed, so everything is protected from weather, dirt, and other particles or things that it would be otherwise exposed to. In addition, direct drive upblast exhaust systems are designed so that the air that is being pulled out of the kitchen is directed away from the building completely.
Additional accessories may also be required if you choose a direct drive upblast exhaust system for a restaurant kitchen. For example, a grease collection box and a grease pipe are two important accessories.
2. Inline blowers
This is another versatile exhaust option. Inline blowers are installed directly into the duct work of of a building. It is remotely installed, so it is not located in the kitchen proper, but rather in an attic or crawl space. This allows the inline blower to be another good option for people looking for a quiet solution to their restaurant exhaust needs. The fan makes noise but since it is in a remote location, it generally cannot be heard by anybody in the building, or if so, the sound is muted significantly.
The inline blower is an excellent choice if installing an exhaust system in the roof or wall would be difficult or impossible for one reason or another.
3. Horizontal exhaust
This type of exhaust unit means the ducts would run horizontally. Like other types of exhaust, the unit ensures that contaminated air is directed away from the building. As well, these systems have a reverse airflow lock that ensures that air cannot come back into the building. This feature not only ensures contaminated air stays outside, it also acts as a sort of insulator, ensuring that, depending on the climate, the cold or hot air cannot make its way inside.
4. Belt drive
The two types of fans available are belt drive and direct drive. Belt drive fans offer more versatility of fan speed. In a belt drive fan, the motor is not directly connected to the fan blades as it would be in a direct drive fan. Therefore, the blades, connected to the motor by one or more belts, move independently, and not necessarily at the same speed as the motor, whereas direct drive fan blades will always move at the same speed as the motor.
Generally, belt drive fans are less costly than direct drive, but may require additional maintenance due to the increased number of moving parts.
5. Centrifugal fans
These fans, also known as blowers, are efficient at not only blowing air, but speeding it up. Using blades, these fans draw air in a circular motion in order to remove contaminated air via air ducts. The other type of fan available is axial, but centrifugal fans tend to deliver a much stronger airflow than axial fans, which use blades to lift air up. Centrifugal fans are another quiet and vibration free option, and they are highly durable and resistant to corrosion – a perfect option for heavy-duty, industrial use.