Why is my commercial fridge not as cold as it used to be?

Listed Under: Blog

Having a commercial fridge that doesn’t hold its temperature can have a detrimental effect on your business. When your commercial fridges can’t hold their temperature, your food could potentially go bad quicker than expected. This may impair the flavour or cause the food to need to be thrown away. It can be costly for your business and bad for your reputation. Due to the repercussions that a malfunctioning fridge can have on your business, it’s important to check your fridge regularly, and if it’s struggling to keep cool, then take action swiftly to bring its temperature down.

Commons reasons for a fridge to not keep its cool

You should be regularly checking your commercial fridge so you know what its temperature is. If the temperature rises, there are a few key things you should check straight away. Firstly, check that the thermostat is at the correct temperature and hasn’t been knocked or altered. Sometimes the thermostat can be faulty, but often they’re just at the wrong temperature. Check all the vents and coils at the back of your unit. These should be cleaned regularly, as if they get clogged with dust or grease, it can affect the efficiency of the refrigeration unit. Always check the door seals. Doors on commercial fridges are subject to high levels of wear and tear, and the doors and their seals can get damaged. A damaged seal can normally be easily replaced, solving the problem quickly.

Check that you’re using your commercial fridge properly. For the fridge to function, the air needs to be able to circulate correctly. A fridge that’s too full will struggle to keep to the correct temperature. The final common reason that your commercial fridge may be losing its cool, is simply its age. Sadly nothing lasts forever, and your commercial fridge will wear out. A good quality commercial fridge should last between 10 and 15 years. With good care and a little luck, you may get 20 years of service out of one. So, if your commercial fridge is in that age range, it may be just that it needs replacing.

Impacts of a faulty commercial refrigerator

  • A commercial refrigerator that fails to maintain its temperature can have a multitude of adverse effects, particularly in businesses like restaurants, bars, hotels and supermarkets, where the proper storage of food and beverages is crucial. Understanding the impacts of such a malfunction is important for maintaining not only business efficiency and profitability, but also health standards and environmental sustainability.
  • Food safety risks: The most immediate and serious impact is the risk to food safety. Temperature fluctuations can lead to the growth of harmful bacteria and other pathogens in food, increasing the likelihood of foodborne illnesses. This risk is particularly acute with perishable items such as dairy, meat and prepared foods. UK food safety regulations are strict about temperature control, and failure to comply can result in severe penalties.
  • Waste and economic loss: Food spoilage due to inadequate refrigeration leads to waste, incurring significant costs for businesses. This loss not only includes the cost of the spoiled goods themselves but also the potential revenue lost from not being able to sell these products.
  • Non-compliance and legal issues: In the UK, businesses are legally required to store food at safe temperatures. Failure to meet these standards can result in fines, legal action and even the closure of a business, particularly if non-compliance leads to public health issues.
  • Reputation damage: Food quality issues arising from improper refrigeration can damage your business’s reputation. In the age of social media and online reviews, reports of poor food quality or food poisoning can spread quickly, potentially causing long-term harm to your brand’s image.
  • Operational inefficiency: A faulty refrigerator may need more energy to maintain temperatures, or it might not be able to hold temperatures steadily, leading to increased energy consumption and higher utility bills. Additionally, if a refrigerator is frequently breaking down or not performing adequately, it can disrupt your daily operations, affecting service and efficiency.
  • Environmental impact: Inefficient refrigeration contributes to higher energy consumption, which, in turn, has a negative impact on the environment. Moreover, if refrigerant gases leak due to malfunctioning, it can contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, which is a concern given the UK’s commitment to environmental sustainability and Net Zero.
  • Customer satisfaction and trust: If customers experience poor-quality products that they suspect (or know) have been improperly stored, their trust in your business can decline. This loss of trust affects customer satisfaction and can lead to a decrease in repeat business.

Mitigating these risks requires regular maintenance and prompt repair of commercial refrigeration units. It also calls for having contingency plans in place, such as using temporary refrigeration solutions during breakdowns, to ensure that temperature-sensitive products are always stored correctly. Understanding the importance of reliable and efficient refrigeration systems underlines the need to invest in high-quality equipment and regular maintenance.

The importance of a good maintenance schedule

Like most things, refrigeration units benefit from being looked after. Having a good cleaning and maintenance schedule for your commercial refrigerator will help to extend its life. Cleaning your refrigerator regularly will help to keep the vents and coils clean and clear of debris, which could impair function. Cleaning will also bring any issues to light. You will spot damage to the seals when cleaning, or notice other problem areas. Ongoing maintenance will pick up on problems before they manifest into something larger. Often, a good refrigerator engineer will be able to quickly replace parts to keep your commercial refrigerator going for longer. Commercial refrigerators are a big investment, and it’s simply good business to keep them running that little bit longer.

When to call for help

If you notice your commercial fridge is not keeping its cool, always carry out some simple checks before calling for professional help. You don’t want the expense of a refrigerator professional to tell you that the thermostat has been knocked, or that your coils need cleaning. Make sure that you’ve checked all the obvious areas of your commercial fridge and if you can’t see what’s causing the problem, then you should speak to a professional. Often, a commercial fridge can be fixed rather than needing to be replaced, and a reputable person will advise when the time has come to replace your unit.

Come to Fridgesmart to upgrade your commercial fridge today

Here at Fridgesmart, we want to keep your business cool. If your fridge is struggling, then let us help. Whether you’re planning to upgrade from your older commercial units or need a speedy replacement for a fridge that is struggling to keep its cool, we can help. We have many years of experience with businesses of all sizes and from different industries. We use our knowledge to ensure that the makes and models of fridges we offer our customers are second to none. We choose a quality design with premium manufacture so that when you choose a Fridgesmart fridge, you know that you have an investment that you can rely on. Whether you need some advice, or just want to order your commercial fridge, we are here to help. Simply call our friendly team today on 01792 677169.