Culinary heat lamps are one of the most important features of any modern-day restaurant and the fast food industry in general because they play a pivotal role in a streamlined and efficient business operation. Here are some facts you may not have known about culinary heat lamps.
Why heat lamps are so incredibly efficient
Traditional heat lamps warm up the surrounding air to keep food warm, a process rendered inefficient by the continual rising action of warm air and interference from stray currents. Modern heat lamps, on the other hand, don’t rely on an intermediary to keep food warm; their infrared waves pass through the air and only begin to heat the food on contact. As soon as the infrared light makes contact with food, a dramatic slowdown in wave frequency occurs, and a transition from wave energy into heat energy causes warming. Heat emanates directly from the food itself, minimizing the problem of vertical heat loss and interference from breezes. The result is that food is kept warm with unparalleled efficiency.
Heating without moisture loss
The benefits of infrared technology don’t stop there. Because of the nature of infrared waves, food is warmed from just below the surface. This may not sound striking until you realize that this helps to keep food succulent for far longer. Unlike traditional methods, where food is kept warm by heating the surface, drawing moisture through the top layer and leaving the center tough and drier, infrared light generates heat under the surface of the food. This means that the skin of a chicken roast, or the outermost layer of a fish dish for example, forms a buffer layer of moisture through which internal water molecules have far more trouble escaping.
Minimal impact on your food’s appearance
Because appearance means everything in the food industry, it helps that the type of light emitted by most modern culinary heating lamps won’t interfere with the hue of your famous salmon dish or your poulet l’estragon. This is because infrared light is completely invisible. Occurring just outside the visible spectrum, it has no impact on the appearance of your dishes, making it far easier to work with than incandescent or other lighting. The latter can also cause a serious glare; it is a less ergonomically viable option.
Why not all culinary heat lamps are the same
True, they all work on the same basic principle, but the prospective buyer needs to bear in mind that there is a large and extensive array of different bulbs, varying in voltage, watts, wavelength, operating temperature and life-hours. Also consider lighted or heated length and the weight of the overall unit, and whether you need any added features like twin tubes, reflectors and water cooling bulbs. As long as you remember that your choice will impact on the long-term cost-effectiveness of your system, you’ll be ready to make the best decision possible.
Keeping in tune with government regulations
With all the many benefits of culinary heat lamps, it shouldn’t come as too hard a blow to realize that they involve some civil responsibility. According to FDA regulations, where a tungsten element is in use, its containing bulb should be shatterproof. In addition to this, no food must ever come into contact with the heating instrument. Health regulations go on to stipulate that food should never be stored outside the range of between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit.