What is the best way, method or solution to clean my belt oven, We have many carbon on top of it even after running the cleaning brush.
HI Dear Mohammed,
Out of all methods in my experience following method is good and you need to do in regular interval of following process to keep your band clean. To my experience all other methods either damage your band or damage your product on long run or damage the entire oven.
1. Oven brush both top and bottom should be easily engagable and remove.
2. You must be able to apply pressure on both top and bottom uniformly by mechanical method either by screw or by any precision mechanical system
3. Good band tracking system.
4. Now on every production off day you heat the band where zone temperature should be higher by 30-40*C.
5. Once you get the temperature switch on the brush and keep minimum pressure and check the band tracking. if the band tracking is not there keep some more pressure and run the band.
6. Pl remember that you need to keep the band running as much as slow possible according to your machine capability. (Normally 10-12 mts Baking time).
7. Run the brush at the same temperature for 60-70mts. by looking the band tracking.
8. Now switch of the burner and when it is cool down also run the band brush till you get the oven temperature around 100-150*C. now disengage the brush and run the band to cool down and switch off.
9. By this method only most the
9. By this method only most of the carbon taken out. If heavy patches are there stop the band and clean by manual only. please do not apply wax or chemical which will spoil the band or wax will get fire when you heat the band and proportionately band will expand and band tracking will be there or fire accident happen if the biscuit fallen inside also catches the fire. We have very bad experience of all these things.
10. The above method is safe and only thing is you have to be careful on band tracking and regular cleaning above method your band looks always good.
If you want to install good band tracking system please write to me. I am having good people known to me.
please note that band brush pressure should be equal on both side that is from working side to non working side of the band.
I agree with all your points mentioned, however, I believe due to some malpractices before like improper setting or wear of the brush, the deposit on the band is difficult to remove at this stage. The only solution I see is manual cleaning but after soaking the band with some chemicals. We used to have absorbing paper soaked in mild detergents and applied to the band in difficult to clear area and left overnight for next day manual brushing. I do agree however that you cannot use any cleaning agents without going back to band supplier to see if it has any negative impact on the band.
Please avoid any use of steel wire brushes. These will only scratch the surface of the band and provide a perfect key in which product debris will attach to and build upon. Plastic bristle brushes will not give this problem and spring loaded plastic scrapers can also be fitted .
Avoid use of any chemical cleaning agents as they will harm the surface of the band. Beeswax or similar is pointless as it will almost immediately be removed by either you brushes/plastic scrapers or indeed the product itself.
The surface of the band should naturally be seasoned by baking temperatures. We would not clean a Wok with a Brillo pad so why would we use harsh abrasive brushing or use of chemicals on our band surface .
For product change or end of run cleaning set band speed to 12 minutes and set temp to 250 C along the length of the oven. Use a weighted bar placed across the width of the oven heavilly wrapped in cloth or felt and placed on the band surface between oven exit and stripping knife. Then add a shallow bed of brown dusting flour or rice flour in front of the cloth covered bar. Agitate the flour every few minutes to prevent scorching. The combination of pressure between moving band and cloth together with gentle abrasion from the flour will gradually break up a remove the carbon on the band surface. Take care to ensure that weighted bar does not apply unequal pressure and affect band tracking.
If the band has been allowed to become heavily coated in carbon it may first be necessary to repeatedly coat the band with a proprietary band release agent to soften the carbon. In this case the cloth covered bar can be used but without use of flour. If using this method be prepared for a significant amount black oily mess and ensure adequate method of dealing with it is in place. Also take great care to ensure the release agent does not come in contact with the underside of the band. Change the cloth or felt with clean as and when necessary and band should revert back to a good seasoned surface for baking.
To maintain cleanliness of a bake oven belts is sometimes difficult.
My experience is mainly based on solid and perforated carbon steel belts and we have seen a lot of different problems and solutions. Sometimes well working procedures. Sometimes not so well working...
Firstly, metal brushes and/or scrapers can work well if some considerations are taken. You have to use a steel grade similar or less hard than the actual belt grade holds. The brush needs to be connected to the belt drive. Rotation should be with belt direction. On perforated belts the brush should not be externally driven. Most important: Frequent inspection of belt surface is needed in order to at earliest possible stage recognize any wear of belt surface, top or bottom.
Excessive fat or product spill should be cleaned off before entering oven again, to avoid it burning to belt surface.
Some bakeries are able to keep belts clean without any carbon build-up over time. One way is to use bees-wax, after cleaning before first use, and polish up an "easy release" surface.
Heavier cleaning issues
When a belt already have gradually built up a carbon residue that needs to be cleaned off you'll need a heavier artillery. But how also depends on what you have burnt into your belt.
For some people high pressure water and detergent is the solution. Even though it dirty and can lead to corrosion if not dried immediately.
To use a corn starch and caustic soda mixture and "bake" it on the belt is an old and well proven method used since many year. Also this is dirty and time consuming but doable.
Dry-Ice cleaning (blasting) is a method that some bakeries prefer to use. Where dry-ice and other ingredients are available this might work well.
Cleaning belts and reducing acrylamide content(According to Regulation EU2017/1258, it's a legal responsibility to reduce levels of this carcinogenic by-product)
There is as well a rather new way of cleaning belts. A combined mechanical and chemical technology where salt is used. During the process a mixture of sodium phosphate and sodium bicarbonate during hard pressure is blasted on belt surface. The method works both with mechanical and chemical impact to get rid of the carbon residue. Tests by Italian research laboratory "CRABion" has proven that this method almost totally removes acrylamide on the bake oven belt. Both solid, perforated and mesh belts can be cleaned with this method.
So the best way is: As always there is no straight forward answer, unfortunately.
It all depends on your specific needs. I'd start easy with food grade oil and rugs on warm belt, sometimes schotch-brite. If this is not enough work my way through the methods above and finally take a decision if it is a better choice buying a new belt or not...
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