Commercial Refrigeration Maintenance: How can You Optimise its Cost?
Commercial refrigeration is critical for an establishment to preserve its perishable food items. However, for a commercial freezer or refrigerator to work properly, regular maintenance is mandatory.
Freezers and refrigerators for commercial applications, if maintained properly, can help you save money on expensive repairs and replacements.
Maintaining a Refrigerator for Commercial Usage
- Inside and outside of the unit:
Deep clean the interiors of your commercial refrigeration unit with a soft brush dipped in warm water and soap or vinegar solution weekly or fortnightly. Check for food spillage, water accumulation and moisture build-up and clean them at least once a week.
For the exteriors, use a soft cloth or brush with soap or vinegar solution to wipe off the dirt. Clean any dampness or water accumulation immediately.
Do not use hard scrubbers to avoid scratch marks. You can use a steel de-greaser or a baking soda solution to deep clean any stubborn grease and food stains.
- Air filters:
When it comes to commercial refrigeration units, dirty air filters can wreak havoc with the ventilation system.
Use a powerful vacuum cleaner to clear the dust and small, loose debris. You can use an approved de-greaser to clear off the grease and sticky grime. If you notice any damage to the air filters, replace them.
- Condenser coil:
Responsible for maintaining the right temperature, a condenser coil requires proper cleaning every three months, failing which you can face overheating and part failure issues.
Make sure to disconnect the power to your refrigerator for commercial use before cleaning the condenser coil. Remove the dirt using a hard bristle brush and then clear any loose debris with a vacuum cleaner. Use a de-greaser for stubborn grease.
- Evaporator coil:
The evaporator coil is located near the evaporator fan of your refrigerator for commercial use. Keep the area surrounding the coil clear and clean.
Do not crowd the area with a lot of items, especially hot substances, as it can block the flow of air to the coil, thereby cooling it down and heating the interiors of the refrigerator.
- Drain pans and tubes:
Big commercial refrigeration units can accumulate massive amounts of sludge in the drain tubes and pans. Overflowing drain pans or blocked drain tubes can emit a foul odour. Also, a blocked pipe can cause the defrosting system to overflow, leading to leakages.
Clean the drain pan and pipes once every month with soap or vinegar solution. Check for water or calcium spots on the drainage hoses and clean them to avoid subsequent build-up.
The door gaskets prevent any cool air from escaping the unit and warm air from going inside by sealing the doors shut.
Gaskets are prone to wear and tear, especially if the commercial freezer is exposed to grime (kitchen, food processing) or the doors are opened frequently (retail shops). Clean the gasket regularly with a soft cloth and soap or vinegar solution.
If you see any broken parts, replace the gasket immediately with manufacturer recommended part.
Apart from following the above-mentioned maintenance tips, it is important to buy your commercial refrigeration units from reliable suppliers, such as Western Equipment, for quality commercial freezers and refrigerators.