What to Consider Before Buying a Commercial Fridge
what exactly should you consider before buying a commercial fridge? How can you get the right one for your needs, and is one going to be enough?
Join us as we explore how a few points to consider before buying a commercial fridge.
Assess Your Needs
There are many types of food businesses out there. Depending on your business, one commercial fridge may be enough. But it’s more likely that to store and display food safely, you’ll need at least two commercial fridges.
A fridge for businesses is different to a domestic fridge. In a domestic fridge, everything goes into the same cupboard effectively. The door is used for storage and there is usually a crisper drawer at the bottom for salad and veggies.
With a commercial refrigerator, there are several differences. First, the door is usually out of the equation.
The commercial fridge features shelves that are laid out for maximum storage. Usually, all shelves are racks and that means that wet items will drip onto the shelves below.
Are you working with meat, fish and vegetables? Before you start commercial fridge shopping, work out how you are going to store them all safely. Putting veggies at the bottom of the fridge might work at home.
In the commercial setting, you need to store meat on the lowest level possible.
This will help to prevent meat juices from accidentally running onto any other items in the fridge. Ideally, the meat will have its own separate commercial fridge for separation and therefore safety.
Prepared food should ideally be kept in a separate fridge from raw food. This is especially true when you are separating cooked dishes and raw meat or fish. There should be no possibility for cross-contamination.
You should also give careful consideration to the layout of commercial display fridges. Check the food safety guidelines to ensure that you avoid cross-contamination.
Calculate the Capacity You Need
After thinking about safety, you need to think about capacity.
It’s a good idea to store fresh food items for as short a time as possible. Commercial kitchens live by FIFO – first in, first out. Be realistic, but don’t plan to store lots of fresh foods that will go off by the time you need them.
Use this to calculate the capacity you need. Err on the side of caution – it’s better to have slightly more space than not enough.
When you have assessed your needs, and know the fridge capacity you need, you are ready to start fridge shopping.
Features and Design
Undercounter or upright? Glass door or steel? These are all factors you need to consider when choosing a commercial refrigerator.
Often the design of your kitchen will play a big part in your choice. Having an under-counter commercial fridge can be very handy for frequently used items, such as cream and butter. However, they involve a lot of bending to see inside – not great when you’re rushing.
Upright fridges are great as you can easily open them and see what’s inside. A commercial fridge with a glass door makes that even easier – and has the advantage of improving fridge efficiency.
Every time you open the fridge door, it warms up slightly. Being able to glance inside can eliminate unnecessary fridge opening!
Speaking of which, self-closing doors are an essential feature on any commercial fridge. During a busy service, you need to be able to walk away and know it’ll securely shut. Also, if you’ve got members of the public taking drinks out of one, you need to know it’ll close behind them.
Automatic defrosting is an excellent feature to look for in a commercial fridge. It keeps the fridge running in good order and also saves you time in having to manually defrost it.
Did you know that commercial fridges account for 4% of emissions from Australia’s energy sector? That’s a bit of a shocker, isn’t it? It highlights how important it is to get the most efficient fridge you can.
Not only are those emissions harmful to the environment, but less efficient fridges also cost you a lot more to run. And remember that you’re running this 24/7.
The Australian government introduced new standards for commercial fridges from May 2021. When comparing fridges, check out their rating on the Energy Efficiency Index (EEI). Choosing a model with a better rating will help to keep your energy bills in check.
Consider the Climate Class
As well as a rating on the EEI, a commercial fridge will also have a climate class rating.
This tells you the ambient temperature range it can operate in. Remember, commercial kitchens can be extremely hot places. If you’re operating a commercial fridge in an environment that exceeds 32°C, you’ll need an ST (subtropical) or T (tropical) rated fridge.
Get Your Commercial Fridge from Snowmaster
Choosing a commercial fridge does require you to make a few important decisions. We hope our fridge buying guide has helped you to assess your needs, and find the right fridge for your commercial kitchen.
Choose Snowmaster for your next commercial fridge. We supply every type of commercial fridge you could need, from commercial upright fridges to deli display fridges and much, much more.
We’re Australia’s largest and most established commercial fridge supplier. We stock a huge range from the world’s leading brands. You can visit or Sydney showroom, or shop online.
Check out our commercial fridge range today!