Commercial Refrigerator Maintenance

Your fridge is an integral part of your business. You need to ensure that it’s in good working order so that it keeps your food at the optimum temperature. Not only that, but it was also a large investment. To ensure that you are getting your money’s worth and that the appliance lasts for a long time, you need to take care of it.

There are several things you need to do on a regular basis to keep your commercial refrigerator in good working order. Doing these maintenance steps will keep your fridge running properly.

1. Keep the Interior and Exterior Clean

To maintain your commercial refrigerator, you need to keep it clean. It’s advised that either weekly or biweekly you clean the interior. This includes removing all items and scrubbing down the shelves and sides. If there are drawers or other items that can be removed, take these out and soak them to get them clean.

The purpose of this task is to remove any spills or debris that may have gathered in the fridge. Leaving these in place could promote the growth of bacteria, which could result in an odour that could taint the food or the food itself become hazardous. Keeping the interior of your fridge clean will reduce the chances of this occurring.

Cleaning the exterior of your fridge is also a good idea to remove any debris that may have collected there. Make sure to use the correct cleaning products. If you have a stainless-steel fridge, don’t use any abrasive cleaning materials or products.

2. Clean the Drain Pans and Tubes

As part of your interior clean, you also want to make sure that you clean out the drain trays and tubes. Your drain pans can collect a large amount of debris and sludge, which can also contribute to the growth of bacteria or freeze your unit. Taking care of these parts on a weekly or biweekly basis will reduce the chances of this occurring and keep your commercial refrigerator running.

You don’t have to clean the tubes as often, but you should at least check them while you are doing your cleaning. If tubes get clogged, this can result in an overflow in the defrost system, which can then pool onto the floor, creating a slipping hazard that employees can injure themselves on. It’s also a good idea to remove any calcium or water spots from the exterior of the hose, as these can lead to corrosion and wear. Using warm, soapy water should be all you need for this cleaning task.

3. Inspect the Door Gaskets

Door gaskets are the long strips that go around the door and form a seal. These play in important role in keeping the cool air inside your unit. If there are cracks and breaks in the gaskets, this could lead to the escape of cold air and force your fridge to work harder than necessary. While you are doing your weekly or biweekly cleaning, you can inspect the gaskets. Replace any damaged or missing gasket with the material recommended by the manufacturer.

Not only is this beneficial for keeping your unit at the right temperature, but it will also have an impact on your utility bill. If air is allowed to escape, your fridge will have to run continuously to keep the interior cool, and this is a waste of energy.

4. Clean the Condenser Coil

You should schedule to have the condenser coil cleaned every 3 months. Your owner’s manual should provide specific cleaning tips for this component, so follow these instructions. If you allow this part to get dirty or dusty, it could result in a rise in temperature in the cabinet. This could cause other components to overheat and fail.

By removing all dust and debris from the condenser coil on a regular basis, you will keep your fridge running optimally. It will also give you a chance to ensure that everything is working the way it should. If it’s not, then calling in a professional before the issue becomes serious can save you money and keep your fridge working properly.

5. Keep an Eye on the Evaporator Coil

This component is located by the evaporator fan and its job is to absorb heat as warm air passes through the fridge. It helps keep the unit’s interior cool. Thus, if there is dirt and debris around this part, it can cause your fridge to be warmer than you would like or other components to overheat. Keeping an eye on the evaporator coil and making sure the vents aren’t blocked will keep the fridge maintained and in good working order.

6. Clean the Air Filters

Your kitchen has a lot of stuff floating in the air. From dust to grease, these items can find their way into the fridge’s air filters and clog them. When this happens, the unit will have a hard time moving air through the system and keeping it cool. To maintain your commercial fridge, you will need to routinely clean the air filters. This includes using a vacuum to get rid of any dirt or debris, as well as a degreaser to remove any grease buildup.

During your routine maintenance, if you notice any cracks or other damage from debris, you may need to replace your air filters.

7. Keep the Fridge Dry

Being in a restaurant, your commercial fridge will be exposed to all kinds of liquids and spills. If any of these are allowed to sit in your fridge, it can cause damage. If left on the interior, they can freeze over time. If the liquid doesn’t freeze, there’s a chance it could find its way to the electrical components and short them out or even result in the growth of bacteria. To prevent these scenarios from occurring, make sure to clean up any spills that occur as soon as possible.

Create a Maintenance Schedule

Having a maintenance schedule for your fridge will ensure that it will run for a long time to come. These units are a large investment and an important part of your business, so you need to take care of it so that it will keep your food and beverages cold.

When it comes to cleaning the fridge, you can have your employees take care of this task on a regular basis. For the other steps, such as checking the electrical and mechanical components, you can either have employees take care of those tasks or call in a professional.

No matter what you decide, make sure you stick to your schedule. Should anything go wrong with your unit, you’ll be able to catch it early before it becomes a major problem. This is another thing that can save you money in the long run and ensure that your fridge works the way it should.

Die-Pat stock a range of commercial refrigeration components to keep you up and running.

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