A food truck operator passes a tray of tacos to a happy customer.

Concession Trailer Hood Installation Guide

Embarking on the journey of setting up a concession trailer is truly exciting, but it comes with its unique challenges and considerations. Among these considerations, ensuring proper ventilation through a concession trailer hood is crucial. A well-installed hood guarantees the safety of your staff and customers while enhancing the efficiency of your mobile kitchen. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through correctly installing a concession trailer hood to ensure safety and efficiency.

Understanding the Significance of Ventilation in Your Food Truck

Before we delve into the installation process, it’s crucial to grasp why ventilation is vital for your concession trailer. Proper ventilation serves three primary purposes:

  • Smoke and Odor Control: When operating in a compact space like a mobile kitchen, smoke and food odors can quickly accumulate, which is unpleasant at best. An efficient concession trailer hood, equipped with suitable filters, captures these irritants and directs them outside. Selecting a hood system with robust filtration capabilities is essential to maintain clean air and ensure that unwanted food odors don’t deter your customers.
  • Fire Safety: The confined nature of concession trailers necessitates careful attention to fire safety. Grease buildup near cooking equipment can pose significant fire hazards. Your concession trailer hood should incorporate a grease removal system, typically consisting of grease filters, to capture grease before it accumulates. Regularly cleaning these filters is essential to prevent potential fire risks. Additionally, a properly functioning fire suppression system is crucial to respond swiftly to any fires that may occur during operation. Ensure that your fire suppression system aligns with the specific requirements of your concession trailer setup and undergoes regular inspections and maintenance to maintain its effectiveness.
  • Food Quality: Consistency is key when it comes to food quality in your concession trailer. Proper ventilation helps maintain consistent cooking temperatures and humidity levels, ensuring that your food is consistently delicious. Adequate ventilation also prevents the buildup of steam and excess moisture, which can negatively impact the texture of your food. For example, if you’re serving crispy fries, a well-designed hood system will help keep them crispy by efficiently removing excess moisture from the air. This ensures customer satisfaction and contributes to the reputation and success of your concession trailer.

Selecting the Right Hood for Your Concession Trailer

Before proceeding with installation, selecting the appropriate hood for your concession trailer is crucial. An expert commercial hood manufacturer like HoodMart will walk you through the following considerations:

  • Size: Your hood should adequately cover all cooking equipment and extend beyond it to effectively capture smoke and grease.
  • Airflow Requirements: Calculate the required airflow (CFM) based on your cooking equipment and the size of your trailer. Ensure that the hood meets or exceeds these requirements.
  • Hood Type: Choose between Type 1 or Type 2 vented hoods (based on equipment under hood) which expels air outside. Finding the right balance between effectiveness, installation complexity, and your specific concession trailer setup is crucial.

Installation Steps

Now, let’s explore the step-by-step installation process an installer will follow for a concession trailer hood:

  • Plan Your Layout: Begin by planning the layout of your concession trailer. Identify the locations of your cooking equipment and the most suitable spot for your hood. Ensure ample space and clearance for a safe and efficient installation.
  • Install Roof Penetrations: For vented hoods, install roof penetrations to accommodate the exhaust ductwork. Properly seal these penetrations to prevent leaks.
  • Mount the Hood: Securely mount the hood to the ceiling or wall. Ensure that it is level and well-anchored to support its weight.
  • Connect Ductwork: Employ rigid metal ducts to connect the exhaust ductwork to the hood. These ducts are more durable and fire-resistant than flexible ones. Seal all connections meticulously to prevent air leaks.
  • Install the Exhaust Fan: Set up an exhaust fan on the exterior of your trailer, connected to the exhaust duct. Size the fan appropriately to provide sufficient airflow in line with your equipment and hood specifications.
  • Add a Fire Suppression System: Install a fire suppression system that matches your cooking equipment for fire safety. Ensure that it’s correctly connected and operational.
  • Electrical Wiring: If your hood system includes lights, engage a licensed electrician to handle the wiring to avoid electrical hazards.
  • Test the System: Before commencing cooking operations in your trailer, conduct comprehensive ventilation system testing. Verify that the hood effectively captures smoke and that the exhaust fan functions as intended.
  • Regular Maintenance: Establish a routine maintenance schedule once your concession trailer hood is operational. Regularly clean filters, inspect ducts, and test the fire suppression system to ensure continuous safety and efficiency.


Properly installing a concession trailer hood is vital for the safety and efficiency of your mobile kitchen. With this installation checklist in mind – and by working with an expert to select the best hood for your specific needs – you can create a safe and comfortable cooking environment for your staff and provide consistent, high-quality food for your customers. Always prioritize safety and adhere to regular maintenance to keep your concession trailer hood functioning at its best.

Ready to figure out exactly what the installation process would look like for your unique business? We’d love to talk you through it – contact the experts at HoodMart today!