Restaurant Installs Propane Grills at No Cost

The best propane grill is designed to help you improve productivity and energy savings. Last February, proprietor Paul Fretz added an Energy Saver electronic gas control system from Custom Electronics Inc and Pa.

The attitude of most cooks, and surprisingly, a lot of restaurant owners out there, is that gas is cheap. The cooks turn their equipment on in the morning and let it roar all day and night. The Energy Saver system is installed in the propane grill gas supply line. It consists of a standalone controller, an electronic main solenoid valve, a bypass valve, and a remote activation button.

When the Energy Saver and the propane grill are turned on in the morning, the controller opens the main solenoid valve, admitting gas to the grill until it reaches normal operating temperature. The device is equipped with a preset, timed shutdown cycle that maintains full gas flow for six minutes. Then a potentiometer-operated timer located in the controller closes the main gas valve and diverts the flow through a mechanical ball valve that is set manually and restricts flow to 20 percent--just enough to keep the burners warm. When the propane grill is needed, the cook hits a button that interrupts the timer sequence and restores full gas flow. Timer cycles vary with the type of propane grill and food cooked, but the user can program the timer from two to 10 minutes. Once the full flow sequence is initiated, it takes approximately 20-30 seconds for grill to reach full cooking capacity. This warm-up time also varies. Indicator lights on the controller inform the cook what mode the system is in. In addition to gas bill savings, the retrofit has other benefits. By firing the propane grill based on demand.

The retrofit also mitigated a safety problem. At full fuel the propane grill can reach temperatures of up to 800 degrees F. Access to the propane grill surface is gained through a large louver-type drawer that is raised and lowered by the cook. Prior to the retrofit, the drawer's handle would get very hot and inexperienced cooks sometimes burned themselves. The retrofit has eliminated this problem and also significantly cut down on food waste from scorching. During a run, a cook can walk away from a steak for a couple of minutes. The unit will automatically shut itself down and we don't have to throw the steak away.

Conclusion: He installed an Energy Saver electronic gas control system to the restaurant's upright, the propane grill. The restaurant's yearly fuel consumption is expected to decrease by 36.1 million Btu, corresponding to utility bill savings amounting to $2,640. The gas control sytem caused a decrease in the kitchen's heat and protected cooks from getting burn