A Quick Guide to Commercial Refrigeration

restaurant cooler

If you own a restaurant, you know the importance of refrigeration. It keeps all your meat and produce fresh, resulting in better quality and happy customers. However, if you’re looking to upgrade your system or just starting your venture into the restaurant business, you may not have the knowledge needed to purchase the perfect system for your establishment. Luckily, we have a quick, handy guide to get you up-to-date on the pertinent aspects of commercial refrigeration for your Lubbock, Texas, business.

Knowing What You Need

Refrigeration is a fundamental component of any restaurant, but many times, owners don’t know what type is ideal for their setup. Essentially, there are three types of commercial refrigeration units to consider: reach-in, under-counter, or full-size walk-in. Each offers a bevy of benefits and helps streamline the food preparation process. Reach-in units are the typical units you may see in a residence, yet commercial ones offer more capacity and features that allow you to set the perfect temperature for your needs.

Under-counter refrigerators also provide a quick way to access food you need while saving time. Often, these units are placed under food preparation counters and are a flawless way to keep the final touches for prep work, such as condiments or sauces, close at hand.

Finally, a walk-in refrigerator offers ample room for food storage. With this type of unit, you can buy in bulk without spoilage, which often earns you discounts from food wholesalers.

Once you’ve decided which refrigerators provide the most benefit to your business, you should also consider what sizes you need. Units that are too large waste money, while refrigerators that are too small won’t accommodate your needs. There are many different sizes for you to choose from, but many restaurants opt for customized versions if they can’t find the perfect one to satisfy their requirements.

For reach-in refrigerators, remember to find one that will fit through the door and where its condenser is located. If the refrigerator is massive, it may not work in your kitchen. In addition, the location of the condenser, either top-mount or bottom-mount, can play a role in convenience, cleaning, and accessibility.

Don’t Forget the Other Aspects

While the refrigerators mentioned above are the cornerstone of a successful kitchen, don’t overlook other aspects of refrigeration. You may need a refrigerated display case for beverages or a bartender’s fridge underneath the bar. At first glance, these may seem like high initial expenditures, but they often pay for themselves thanks to the time they save.

Basic Upkeep

Maintaining your commercial refrigeration isn’t necessarily a difficult task, as long as you maintain a rigorous upkeep schedule. Each week, you should check the temperature and defrost settings to make sure you don’t lose food to spoilage. To keep your electric bill down, check to see that employees turn out the lights of the walk-in unit, as leaving the light on increases energy usage and causes the temperature to rise. Finally, you should clean all refrigerators to maintain a high level of food safety.

Every month or two, there are extra steps you can take to ensure the integrity of your refrigeration. This includes cleaning the condenser and evaporator coils, much like you would on an air conditioning unit. Once you’ve completed this, you can check the unit for leaks, as well as oil the fan. If you don’t have that type of expertise, don’t hesitate to give us a call for monthly maintenance.

To ensure your unit works efficiently and lasts as long as possible, schedule one or two tuneups a year. During this process, we’ll take care of the inspection, cleaning, and maintenance of all your equipment. However, this low-cost tuneup pales in comparison to the cost of replacing the refrigerator altogether. You may also want to consider our maintenance plan, which provides you with priority service and no-fee emergency maintenance.

Now that you’re armed with everything you need to know regarding commercial refrigeration, you’re prepared to run a successful kitchen, bar, or deli that will keep your customers coming back. If you ever need expert advice or some guidance on how to make your business even more efficient with regards to refrigeration, don’t hesitate to call Bruce Thornton Air Conditioning at 806-589-1014.

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