MAR 6 & 7 2024

Miami Beach Convention Center

UL300 or UL300A for Commercial Cooking Areas?

We all know UL300 is the national standard for Fire Extinguishing Systems for the protection of Commercial Cooking Areas. But what about UL300A? How important is that “A”? To Denlar, and any non-commercial cooking space it is VERY important, and could save thousands of $$$ and hundreds of lives.

AT A GLANCE

  • UL300A can be looked at as a subset of UL300
  • UL300A fire suppression systems maintain the theory and intent of a UL300 system
  • UL300A is intended for residential-grade appliances that are NOT used for profit
  • UL300A has a more accessible price point than a full UL300

According to the NFPA, cooking fires are the leading cause of home fires and home injuries! 

Unfortunately, the risk of cooking fires doesn’t just apply to homes, but anywhere that cooking activity occurs. This could be your child’s Life Skills Home Studies classroom, your parents’ elder care facility, a campus setting, or even a communal hall with cooking facilities.

How do you protect a residential-grade appliance that is used in a commercial or otherwise public space – but isn’t really part of a “true” commercial cooking operation, without overspending on a UL300 or under-specifying with a residential hood?

Keep reading to learn more about the UL300A Standard. 

OR click here to learn why Denlar is the ONLY mechanically actuated (fail-safe) UL300A hood on the market today.

WHAT IT IS

Following a tragic fire at the Bridgeport Housing Authority in 2012, Connecticut-based Denlar™ increased its efforts to help champion the UL300A product category. This standard was developed by Underwriters Laboratories (UL), - an independent testing laboratory in the United States – to address protecting a residential range from the number one cause of a fire – a cooking fire.

While UL300 is intended for application in full commercial cooking facilities, UL300A regulates fire suppression systems that are designed for use over residential-style cooking surfaces. This includes both gas and electric cooktops and ranges. Size limits are determined by the manufacturer.

HOW DOES COOKING IN A COMMERCIAL BUILDING RELATE TO UL300A?

This is a tricky question that is quite easily answered.

UL300A units are approved for use in commercial facilities, provided the cooktops protected by the UL300A products are not used for commercial sales. This means facilities such as nursing homes and daycares, where cooking is simply an ancillary service, would be able to implement a UL300A system. Similarly, houses of worship, churches, mosques, or community halls that use kitchens for charitable social events would also be able to utilize the UL300A system. A student kitchen in a university residential hall and a breakroom in a commercial office building or hospital are also UL300A uses.

However, if any of the cooking is sold for a profit, the facility will require a full commercial UL300 system.

UL300A fire suppression systems maintain the theory and intent of a UL300 system while being tailored to protection of a residential grade range. (Usually 30” or 36”). UL300A is recognized widely across the United States by various regulatory bodies, including the NFPA and the International Code Council (ICC).

WHY IT'S GREAT

UL300A offers a cost-effective option for facilities that don’t truly need a full UL300 commercial fire suppression system while still providing commercial style fire protection.

Prior to UL300A, cooktops and ranges used in a commercial facility would often be considered commercial simply by virtue of their location, regardless of the intended use of the cooking surface (commercial sales vs ancillary, education, etc).

This resulted in a common residential grade cooking appliance needing a commercial range hood and fire suppression system that can have a price tag of $15k or more! This type of code interpretation often forced many facilities to forgo food preparation or close completely.

Since the introduction of Denlar’s UL300A listed systems – a highly effective and economically priced option, facilities have a better way to mitigate cost without sacrificing safety!

* Requirements and use of fire suppression systems is up the purview of the local AHJ