With the arrival of summer, food service business owners know that demand for their crisp, cold salads, icy beverages, and other perishable food items will be high. But keeping commercial refrigeration equipment running safely and efficiently can be difficult, especially during hot, humid summer weather. If you are a food service business owner who wants to avoid costly mechanical breakdowns and the resulting loss of expensive food supplies, these maintenance tips are a great place to begin.
Institute mandatory daily checks for all refrigeration equipment
Avoiding unpleasant surprises with your refrigeration equipment is easiest when you develop a pattern of consistent daily inspections to help you spot potential issues. Use a dedicated clipboard chart or a spreadsheet to record mandatory checks of the system each day. During these checks, note and record all interior temperature readings for all refrigeration equipment your business uses. Doing this will allow you to more easily spot patterns that could mean the equipment is operating under stress so that you can have it professionally serviced or repaired before an actual failure occurs.
When checking and recording temperatures, it is also wise to check the area around the exterior of each unit for blockages that might affect its performance.
Install fluorescent interior lights
Walk-in freezers and coolers often have incandescent lighting that can create additional heat and force the unit to work harder to maintain the proper interior temperature. This problem becomes worse if employees are leaving the lights on all the time. Installing florescent bulbs in the interior of the unit and instructing employees to turn the lights off when exiting coolers and freezers will address this issue and reduce stress and wear on the equipment.
Pack coolers and freezers per manufacturer's instructions
Like the deep freezer in most homes, commercial freezers function more efficiently when they are sized correctly and kept filled. Frozen foods help the freezer unit maintain the proper temperature, helping it operate more efficiently than it would if it were partially empty for long periods.
Refrigeration equipment, however, requires room between food containers to ensure even chilling. An refrigerator that is too small for your needs may quickly become overworked and inefficient to operate.
Invest in regular professional servicing
One of the best ways to boost efficiency and protect the life of hard-working food service refrigeration equipment is to have regular professional servicing. Depending on your level of business, a semi-annual or quarterly servicing appointment can do much to prevent refrigeration failures that could result in food safety or spoilage issues and the loss of income while emergency repairs are being made.
Contact a company that offers refrigeration repair services for additional information.