Demonstration of High-Efficiency Commercial Cooking Equipment and Kitchen Ventilation System

High Efficiency Commercial Cooking Equipment


Fisher-Nickel, Inc.


San Ramon, CA

Recipient Location


Senate District


Assembly District



Amount Spent



Project Status

Projects Updates/The Results

Monitored sites experienced cookline gas usage reduction after the energy efficient appliance replacements, ranging from 19% to 68%. Average gas savings were about 35% for the entire cookline. NOx emissions were evaluated on five appliance types: fryers, broilers, griddles, ovens, and ranges. NOx concentration ranged from 10 to 110 ppm (corrected to 0% oxygen) across these appliance categories. Various high efficiency cookline equipment is now used by a large catering company, a university hospital, a hotel, a restaurant & bar, a grocery store, and a full-service restaurant. The results have been communicated to the food service industry, engineers, designers and other key decision makers through the Food Service Technology Center website and case studies:

The Issue

Food service facilities consume up to five times more energy per square foot than any other type of commercial building. They are commonplace and include cafeterias in commercial buildings, schools, healthcare facilities, and restaurants. With an estimated 93,300 commercial food service facilities operating in California, the total gas load of these establishments approaches 40% of the overall commercial gas consumption in the state. Across all California's foodservice establishments, there are roughly 560,000 major commercial gas-fired cooking appliances, accounting for 475 million therms consumed annually, producing approximately 2.5 million metric tons of CO2e.

Project Innovation

This project demonstrates natural gas savings potential resulting from installation of innovative energy-efficient commercial food service technologies in a holistic approach to kitchen cook line design. The demonstration of natural gas and cost savings, and other benefits accelerates the adoption of the advanced energy-efficient cooking equipment within the food service industry. The project includes a kitchen exhaust ventilation optimization process and incorporates best practices from the Commercial Kitchen Ventilation Design Guides and includes a demand control ventilation system for selected sites.

Project Benefits

This project evaluated the energy and operating patterns of a variety of standard and advanced, high efficiency commercial cooking appliances in six different commercial kitchens, representing a wide range of usage, from light batch cooking at a grocery store to very heavy use at a 24-hour airline catering facility. The cooking appliances focused were fryers, broilers, griddles, ovens, and ranges. The standard equipment was then replaced with advanced, high efficiency units, including power burners, infrared burners, advanced heat exchangers, combination hot air & steam heating, and advanced controls. The project identified the highest energy consuming appliances and showed that a targeted appliance replacement can have significant energy cost savings over the ten year life cycle of the equipment. The target audience for the study is food service operators.

Lower Costs

Lower Costs

With roughly 100,000 foodservice facilities operating in California, most of which having at least some combination of range, fryer, griddle, or oven, there is large market potential for implementing energy-efficient appliances. Sites in this project demonstrated up to 68% energy savings. As an industry that accounts for an estimated 475 million therms in annual gas consumption, the average demonstrated gas savings of 35% for food service establishments is significant. This indicates a potential 166 million therm reduction in annual gas consumption.

Environmental & Public Health

Environmental & Public Health

The reductions in natural gas and electricity savings results in a reduction of 14.4 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions.

Key Project Members

Project Member

David Zabrowski

Project Manager



Davis Energy Group, Inc.


Fisher Consulting


Gas Technology Institute


Contact the Team