Originally Posted by Dorse
I'm new to this forum, but have lurked for a few times. This is an interesting topic that prompts me to wonder how professional kitchens clean their high octane ranges. I work at a university with several dining halls and kitchens. Once a year we get the word that there will be a steam cleaning of facilities. Is this how it's done? Can you clean your grill grates (after being removed) with one of those small steam cleaners?
There is a big difference between the small steam cleaners and a proper 'Vapor' cleaner....which is what commercial kitchens use. The small steam cleaners use wet steam, which is usually not under any pressure - it's just like the steam you get from your kettle, but forced through a small hole so that it blasts out, because the steam is not under pressure it doesn't get much above boiling temperature, and it produces very wet steam that condenses easily and drenches the surface you are cleaning. Vapor cleaners on the other hand use steam under pressure (about 5 bars), which superheats the steam to germ-killing temperatures and produces 'dry' steam - i.e. it will not condense and soak surfaces with water very much. You can get quality residential vapor cleaners for around $400 upwards, which are very good. Commercial vapor cleaners are more expensive.
In Europe, residential vapor cleaners are a popular method of cleaning your house - you get germ-killing power without the use of harmful chemicals. I used a 'Polti' vapor cleaner for many years back in England, and now have a continuous fill commercial model over here. I use it for deep cleaning carpets, cabinets, floors, bathrooms, windows, my oven, grill, electrical items that you can't wash easily, killing dust-mites in the furniture, bedding & carpets and anything else that could do with a good deep clean and sanitizing. For more info - look up 'vapor cleaners' on the internet :)