OT - ''Effluent''

foodonastumpApril 19, 2012

I don't know who started using the word "effluent" here, or when, but it sure has caught on, hasn't it? I never questioned what was meant, but it recently struck me that I've never heard the term used in the context of kitchen ventilation outside of this site. So I googled it, and 99% - if not 100% - of what I found relates to water discharge of one sort or another. Sewage, farming run-off, cooling water from industry, etc. Perhaps someone will quote a respected source that uses the term in the context of cooking, but I'd still maintain that it's not a common usage.

So, my question of the day: What's the matter with discussing cooking "vapor" like the rest of the world does? Vapor, by definition, neatly includes steam, grease and smoke, which is exactly what we're trying to discharge from our kitchens.

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Emilner

You say tomato, I say tomato...

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 10:13AM
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thull

Since I actually work in the real effluent business, I find it comical that folks are using the word to describe something kitchen related.

One of my favorite quotes, regarding using reclaimed water (super highly treated wastewater) for artificial snow production in Colorado: "The affluent don't want to ski on the effluent."

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 11:47AM
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mojavean

I think the first time I heard the term was from our friendly engineer, Kaseki. (This is not to imply that all of the other fine engineers on GW are not "friendly!")

Anyway, it makes sense. Cooking "fumes" consist of products of combustion (with all gas cookers and also electrics when stuff get's burnt) and vaporized volatiles such as grease and steam. It all comes out in a stream moving upward away from the cooking surface, so effluent seems to me to be a reasonable, all-encompasing way to characterize it. It is a waste product that must be dealt with somehow, even if for some of us (and by some of us, I mean not me, usually) it means opening a window.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 5:03PM
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kaseki

Well, maybe the guilt starts here, although the root word means to flow out of -- which might reasonably refer to a pan. A better word from the same Latin root is probably effluvium -- a rising vapor of invisible or barely visible gas or particles. Plume is also widely used. Maybe we can have a vote.

I suspect that I picked it up from some commercial ventillation site. And lo and behold, my first stab in the dark reveals in Greenheck's Kitchen Ventilation Systems Application & Design Guide this example on page 4: "Hoods that are used against a wall have a tendency to capture and contain the effluent using less airflow than in an island type application." (as _we_ all know). I don't have NFPA 96 handy to see how the NFPA refers to it.

The Greenheck guide deserves to be in the forefront of the literature search all wannabe hood questioners should engage in.

kas

Here is a link that might be useful: Greenheck Guide

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 9:01PM
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foodonastump

Emilner - Actually I do say tomato.

Thull - Love the quote!

Mojavean & Kas - Thanks, mystery solved! Sounds like it's a Good Word to Use if you want to people think you're smart like Kas. ;-)

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 9:49PM
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colin3

fwiw "vapor" is often used just to mean a dispersion in air of a liquid (or solid) i.e. not smoke, and my guess is most people associate the term with water vapor.

But I'm all for effluvium. Efflux. Stuff in the air.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 12:13AM
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alexrander

I'm going to start saying miasma.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 12:23AM
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colin3

nebulosity

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 1:27AM
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attofarad

Miasma aggravates my asthma.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 12:57PM
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Angie_DIY

I vote for effluvium or miasma. Then we can have fun with plurals (effluvia and miasmata, respectively.)

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 2:01PM
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weedmeister

My Dad told me, "Son, don't step in the effluent." I've found that to be handy advice working around DC.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 3:36PM
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kaseki

So, is it 'effluvia' when the output of more than one pan is intended? Or is indistinguishable and mixed effluent still 'effluvium' and the plural 'effluvia' limited to the output of multiple cooktops into separate hoods?

I suggest 'miasma' be limited to the result of insufficient capture and containment.

kas

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 8:04PM
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mojavean

Kas, you crack me up!

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 8:17PM
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attofarad

I think "effluent" is pretty on-target with some of my cooking results.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 10:29PM
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kaseki

LOL

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 10:02AM
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colin3

"Effluvia" sounds like a character in an Oscar Wilde play.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 3:16PM
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