How often should I change my oil? And other questions we hear a lot

How To

We want to tackle your frequently asked questions to prepare you for the journey ahead. If you have any questions you would like us to answer please get in touch.

At some point, everyone who has bought a trailer has done it with passion in their heart, with a view to having their own business. They usually come to us with some previous experience and a willingness to put the effort in to start something new. 

Having your own business is a lifestyle choice that we want to support you in. We will be on hand to help you with the things that matter, from the layout to the business plan. We have even written some standard business plans to help you get started.

When we have handed over the vans and conversions to the owners to start their journey, these are some of the questions we have heard.

What types of oil should you use for a Chip fryer?

When choosing oil, make sure you look for one that is high in monounsaturated fatty acids and low in saturated/polyunsaturated fatty acids, such as canola, safflower, vegetable and high oleic sunflower oil. This is because it has a high smoke point and can be heated to a higher temperature without the oil degrading. It is also good to note the smoke point will lower with each use and to aim not to heat above the oils smoke point.

How long does oil last in a Chip fryer?

It is important to change the oil on a regular basis, as overuse of the oil will degrade it, which will, in turn, deteriorate the quality of the food you produce. The general rule of thumb is to change the oil every couple of days if it lasts that long!

The first thing you will notice when the oil needs to change is the visibility - the colour of the oil will change from clear, to cloudy. When heated the oil will foam, froth and smoke and will start to smell, at which point it is time to change it. Once you have been working for a few weeks you will just know when it needs changing.

How can I make my oil last longer?

The quality of the oil can be preserved if you empty the oil and clean the fryer daily. You can preserve the oil and take out impurities by pouring it through coffee filters and reusing for the next day.

Don't overload your chip fryer, in fact, it should never be more than half full. If overloaded the temperature of the oil will drop, the food will absorb more oil, and you will run out of oil quicker. 

Banging and shaking the chips when taking them out of the fryer will reduce the absorption of the oil by 20%, causing you to use less oil, which will help conserve your oil levels. 

How long does a gas bottle last?

Most mobile catering units will have a 19kg bottle of gas. There is an equation to get a rough estimate of how many hours you will get out of it.

263 (this is for a 19kg bottle) ÷ the output of kilowatts (kw)

Here is an example:
263 ÷ 20 (this is the amount a fryer will use) = 13.15 hours approximately 

This sum works if you were consistently using the gas bottle with the piece of equipment at a high temperature.

To help you out on a bigger scale, here are examples of a trailer kit out

Griddle = 8kw 
Bain Maire = 3kw
Boiler = 3kw 

8kw + 3kw +3kw = 14kw

263 ÷ 14 kw = 18.79 hours of continuous use.

(Please remember that this is only a rough guide).

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