It’s one of the most vital elements of a healthy restaurant or foodservice venue. Among many parts of restaurant refrigeration you’ll end up purchasing is a reach-in refrigerator and freezer.
Before buying a reach-in refrigerator or freezer, there are some questions we always like to ask our consumers, so we thought we would share these questions so that you may ask yourself prior to walking right into a commercial restaurant equipment store.
- What size am I searching for? Many people only consider width and thickness while browsing for a reach-in. Don’t neglect to consider the height as well. Top-mount compressors require a minimum clearance of 18 inches from the top of your reach-in to the ceiling.
- Is my kitchen exceptionally hot or can it be air-conditioned? Hot kitchens (usually defined as over 75 degrees F) may require a refrigeration unit with a higher ambient temperature evaluation to help ensure the unit can maintain the desired interior temperature is very warm kitchen surroundings. Be sure to consider the temperatures enclosing your reach-in!
- Do I require a holding or working box? A “holding box” identifies refrigeration equipment specializing in storing food overnight or is simply not used regularly during restaurant hours of operation. A “working box” identifies refrigeration equipment that’s opened and closed many times throughout the day.
The substantial difference involves the box’s design and the compressor’s ability to keep a consistent, inner temperature while still being used frequently by the restaurant’s kitchen employees. Decide which kind of box you are buying, then make sure the specifications match it’s intended use by checking the spec-sheets or asking one of our product specialists.
- Do I need a top or bottom mount compressor? Ordinarily, refrigeration using its own compressor mounted on top (top-mounted unit) is preferred in temperate places or bakeries and pizza stores where there might be a lot of flour that settles towards the floor. The cause of this is because a bottom-mounted compressor brings air from close to the ground, therefore pulling the dust or flour with it. This can lower the effectiveness and life of the compressor.
Reach-in refrigerators with bottom mounted compressors are preferred in hot kitchens (above 75 degrees). Since heat rises, a top-mounted compressor will have to work harder to keep the device cool, whereas a bottom-mounted blower will have the ability to draw cooler air near the floor.
- Are there any local certification requirements that I need to consider? One of the first things that you ought to do when starting your search for commercial refrigeration would be to study which local certification demands your own food service equipment will be required to meet. Although NSF, UL and ETL certifications all meet the same ANSI standards, some localities will only recognize an NSF certificate. This might have an effect on what brands or reach-ins you need to choose from.
For instance: In Dallas, Texas — your equipment must be listed as “Commercial,” and be NSF, UL or ETL certified. Certifications may vary by location, so make sure you check out which certifications are suitable in which you are opening your venue. Dallas, Texas has provided a very valuable document on its website, texas.gov.
- Do I have a brand preference? This is simple. According to your prior experiences with commercial refrigeration equipment, do you have a favorite brand? For instance, a number of our customers prefer Berg reach-ins as they’re inexpensive, yet have the added-value of stainless steel insides. Some food service managers favor Turbo-Air since their components have built-in condenser cleaners, making care more convenient.
Sometimes it’s just best to stay with what you know. Of course, it’s not always possible or convenient to purchase the specific same new, but you absolutely need to convey the brand and what you liked about your prior reach-in to our product specialists. Texas Restaurant Supply can help match you with a new or model that’s designed to the specifications and profile that previously worked in your restaurant’s kitchen.
In closure, asking yourself these questions before buying commercial refrigeration will not just allow you to make more informed choices; additionally, it will allow you to obtain a reach-in fridge with confidence and reassurance.
It can be a more tricky choice, so in the event that you find yourself in an impasse, you can always visit Texas Restaurant Supply online website or store. We’ll be happy to go over your particular requirements and help answer your queries!