Buying a standalone fridge or freezer is an important purchase for any commercial kitchen. You certainly want to make sure that it is going to do the job you want for a long time. Replacing these units and even getting the serviced can be a hassle. For this reason and many others, consider the following when buying your next cooling unit:
- Size Matters: The first thing to remember is that a fridge or freezer, by design, must keep the entire cabinet at a regulated temperature. If there is too much or too little product in the unit, the job becomes more difficult and the unit is prone to malfunction. For this reason, buying a commercial fridge or freezer that is the right size for your business needs is very important. Know your space requirements before you shop for a cooling device if you want to make the right choice.
- Stainless is a Good Choice: Stainless steel is overall, a more sanitary solution for your fridge or freezer. It can be coated with a bacteria resisting film and also cleans better than other surfaces because of how smooth it is. This makes it a smart choice for your commercial fridge or freezer. It is also the most durable material that commercial fridges and freezers are made from.
- Check Energy Ratings: The last thing to check out before you buy is the energy rating of your fridge or freezer. Look for energy star ratings and other rating system seals which tell you that the unit isn’t going to suck back the power. This will ensure that you aren’t spending a fortune to run the model, which could hurt the bottom line of your business.
Who Makes the Longest Lasting Commercial Fridge?
Delfield, True, Frigidaire, Beverage-Air, and Turbo Air are some of my favorite companies. They have been in the commercial cooling industry for years and I have seen each of these models last much longer than the average life expectancy of a fridge or freezer which is 10 years. Our current Turbo Air refrigerator has lasted 8 years and I expect it will last much longer with regular maintenance.
Buying a Used Commercial Fridge or Freezer
If you are looking at buying a used model to start your commercial kitchen or as a cheap replacement you have to look a little closer at a few things:
- Condenser Check: The condenser will be found on the back of the fridge or freezer and will have a couple tubes on it, one large and one small. Check the condenser to see if it rocks. If it doesn’t, it was likely refastened to the unit, which is a good sign that it was replaced or has malfunctioned before. Also check the fins on the condenser. If they are laden with grease, it can cause the compressor to be overworked and fail prematurely.
- Evaporator Check: The evaporator is inside your fridge or freezer and helps to regulate cabinet temperature. If the fan is noisy or the fins clogged with grease and dust, it could definitely lead to problems down the road. A problem with the evaporator is likely to affect your compressor and the overall functioning of the entire fridge or freezer.
- Cabinet Check: The biggest thing to look for in the cabinet is cracking. If the cabinet is cracked then you are going to risk losing energy and having warm spots in your cooling unit. This can harm the food and create health risks. Never buy a used fridge or freezer that has a cracked or damaged cabinet.