How to Clean a Commercial Fryer

by Erika Becklin; Updated September 26, 2017
Drain the oil and clean daily, and boil out once a week .

Commercial fryers need daily cleaning, as well as a weekly boil-out for proper maintenance, food quality, public health and kitchen safety. Follow safety procedures, use caution, and follow warnings on the equipment when cleaning and working with fryers. The hot oil in fryers can cause serious burns.

Items you will need

  • Oil drain pan or drum
  • Filter cone
  • Clean-out rod
  • Cleaning cloths
  • Water drain pan
  • Water
  • Fryer cleaning solution
  • Fryer brush
  • 1/2 cup vinegar

Daily Cleaning

Step 1

Disconnect the power supply. If cleaning a gas fryer, close the gas supply inlet and turn off the pilot light. If the fryer has to be moved, unhook the gas lines, unlock the wheels and wait for the oil to cool completely before moving.

Step 2

Remove the fryer basket and sediment tray or screen from the fryer. Use the clean-out rod to remove these items from the hot grease. Clean, rinse and dry these items completely before the next use.

Step 3

Place a steel drum, never plastic, with a filter cone under the drain. Drain the oil carefully and only after it has completely cooled. Do not let the oil splash or spill.

Step 4

Remove any debris and sediment, including any blocking the drain.

Step 5

Close the drain valve and, only after the fryer kettle has completely cooled, wipe clean with cloths and warm water. Dry completely before the next use.

Weekly Boil-Out

Step 1

Perform the daily cleaning steps before performing the boil-out.

Step 2

Close the drain valve and place a large pan underneath to catch drained cleaning water after the boil-out. The fryer should still be completely powered down.

Step 3

Fill the fry tank 3 inches from the top, or to the oil level line, with water and non-caustic detergent.

Step 4

Turn the fryer on to boil. The recommended boil-out temperature varies from fryer to fryer. Some fryers have a boil or boil-out mode. Other fryers should be set between 190 to 225 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don't know what the manufacturer of your fryer suggests, it is better to start at the lower temperatures for safety.

Step 5

Simmer, or slow-boil, the water for 20 minutes. Do not let the water splash, splatter, boil violently or boil over.

Step 6

Turn off the fryer and scrub the bottom, sides and heating element with a fryer brush.

Step 7

Drain the water slowly and carefully into the water drain pan after it has cooled. If the fryer has a filter system, do not let the water drain into the filter tanks. This will damage the system.

Step 8

Rinse the fryer with water and 1/2 cup of vinegar. Rinse again with water.

Step 9

Wipe down the fryer, dry the tank and close the drain valve. Make sure all of the water is gone and the fryer is completely dry before filling with oil for the next use.


  • Keep surface areas clean of grease during use to prevent flare-ups.

    Skim crumbs and remove sediment periodically for optimal performance.

    Drain and filter oil daily.

    Follow warnings and safety precautions when performing these cleaning procedures.


  • Do not move a fryer with hot oil. Wait until it cools completely. This may take several minutes.

    Do not drain, strain, or filter hot oil. Wait until it cools completely.

    Do not let water get into the hot oil when wiping down outer surfaces.

    Do not leave the fryer unattended during the boil-out procedure.

    Do not let water boil over, splatter or splash out of fryer during cleaning. This can also cause severe burns.

    Wear protective insulated oil-proof gloves when draining oil and when there may be contact with hot oil.

    Make sure screens and other parts are dry before putting them back into the fryer. Water will make the oil splatter.

About the Author

Making the complex understandable, Erika Becklin has written on parenting, education, small business, manufacturing, food service, and travel as a small-business owner and manager since 1996. Her articles appear on eHow and Answerbag. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English with a focus on professional and technical writing from the University of South Florida.

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