When you operate a restaurant or convenience store, a properly working refrigerator is critical to your success. Rather than ignoring your refrigerator until something goes wrong, it's a good idea to perform regular maintenance on it. As a business owner, you want to do everything you can to avoid spoiled food, closing to repair a broken fridge, or the expense of replacing your refrigerator altogether. Just follow these five tips for taking care of your refrigerator:
Clean the Condenser Coils
Over time, your refrigerator's condenser accumulates dirt and dust, which makes it run less efficiently. When the condenser coils are dirty, your fridge will have a much harder time getting and staying cold and will use more energy than it should. They should be cleaned once or twice a year, plus any time you notice that they are dirty.
Luckily, condenser coils are easy to clean. First, turn off the refrigerator. Then, simply locate the condenser coils, which are black metal coils typically located at the bottom of the fridge behind a grill. Remove the grill and then use a vacuum attachment to clean away all the dust, dirt, and pet hair you can. If your coils are especially dirty, you may want to buy a condenser coil cleaning brush online.
Keep the Fridge and Freezer Full
Keeping your fridge and freezer full actually helps them to work more efficiently and therefore last longer. This is because the more full it is the less chance there is for cold air to escape and warm air to enter when you open and close the refrigerator door. If you're low on stock or your business is closed down for vacation, you can always keep the refrigerator full with jugs of water.
Help Keep it Cool
You can help your refrigerator run as effectively as possible by keeping it cool. If at all possible, arrange your kitchen so that your refrigerator doesn't receive direct sunlight. If it is in the sun and there's no practical way to change this, try to keep the kitchen blinds closed during the hottest part of the day.
In addition to keeping your fridge out of the sun as much as possible, make sure your refrigerator is always kept at the best possible temperature. The FDA recommends keeping your refrigerator set to 40 degrees or lower and your freezer set at zero.
Check the Seals
The rubber seals on your refrigerator door can wear down, lose their flexibility, and even crack over time. If they do so, your refrigerator won't work as well as it should because the seal is what helps keep the cold air inside and warm air out when the door is closed. If your refrigerator door doesn't seem to be closing as tightly as it used to, you may need to have the seals replaced by a professional commercial refrigerator repair service.
Have it Inspected
While taking good care of your refrigerator is important, it's also important to know when to call a repair service, such as Pro-Staff Mechanical Inc. Consumer Reports recommends having your refrigerator inspected and repaired by a qualified repair service whenever it makes unusual hissing sounds, becomes covered in condensation, leaks, or begins shutting itself on and off.
Having your refrigerator looked at and repaired at the first sign of trouble may save you from more expensive repairs, or the need to replace your refrigerator earlier than you had planned. Refrigerator repair workers can also clean your condenser coils and fan if you don't want to do it yourself.
By following these easy tips, you can help your commercial refrigerator last many more years.