Commercial Refrigeration

5 Common Commercial Refrigeration Problems

June 29, 2020

Even the best commercial refrigerators can develop problems. These problems often occur during the busiest times, such as the weekend dinner rush at your restaurant or the day your grocery store is having a big sale. Here are the five most common ways commercial refrigeration systems can break down in Opelika, AL.

Unable to Maintain Proper Temperature

A commercial refrigerator may be unable to keep the proper temperature for a number of reasons. This problem can be due to a dirty condenser or evaporator coils, the refrigerant being undercharged, a broken compressor, a leaky relief valve or discharge tube or poor airflow, among other issues.

Before you assume that your refrigerator is malfunctioning, make sure it is set to the desired temperature. Check that the refrigerator is a small distance from the wall, as it needs room to circulate air correctly. Make sure the door closes all the way and seals properly.

A bad compressor can also be the cause of a refrigerator that can’t maintain the correct temperature. If you don’t hear a constant humming sound, then you should have your refrigerator inspected by a technician.

Ice Accumulation

Ice can form in your refrigerator for a few reasons. It may be a sign there’s a leak in your refrigerant, or it could be due to poor air ventilation. You may have dirty fans or filters that need to be cleaned or worn-out door gaskets.

You should also check that the defrost cycle is set up correctly. Ice can also build up on your refrigerator’s evaporator coils due to a low-temperature setting, dirt and debris accumulating on the coils, a broken evaporator fan motor, or a malfunctioning defrost system. Or you may have just been leaving the door open for too long.

Commercial Refrigeration Making Noises

A commercial refrigerator makes noise due to fans, motors and the compressor. Strange noises emanating from your refrigerator may be due to a misaligned fan motor, compressor failure or other issues. You should call a technician right away when you hear strange noises, so you won’t have to temporarily shut down your store or restaurant.

You should have a trained technician regularly maintain your refrigerator so they can catch issues like this before they become a big problem. Sensigreen Mechanical offers a maintenance agreement designed to keep your refrigerator working properly.

There are several benefits to properly maintaining your commercial refrigerator. The appliance will last longer and incur lower utility costs. It will also be less likely that your refrigerator will break down, putting your business on hold while repairs are made.

Evaporator Fan Issues

If you have ice building up throughout the refrigerator, it may be that the evaporator fan isn’t working correctly. Check the evaporator and, if there is any ice build-up, turn off the refrigerator so the ice will melt. The evaporator coils should then be cleaned and the drain lines checked to make sure they’re not clogged.

If only part of the evaporator coil is freezing over, it’s likely that your refrigerant has a low charge. You should contact a certified technician so they can recharge the refrigerant and make sure the pressures and sub-cooling are where they should be.

Commercial Refrigeration Lighting Problems

Lights in your commercial refrigerator sometimes stop working. It’s usually the case that it’s the light itself rather than an electrical issue.

Before replacing a light bulb, check the refrigerator’s manual. The manual will inform you about which bulbs are verified and approved by the manufacturer. It’s important to have an approved light bulb installed to prevent the light’s electrical sockets from burning out.

Sensigreen Mechanical has been providing commercial and residential HVAC services in Opelika, AL, since 2012. Our NATE-certified technicians provide heating, air conditioning, commercial refrigeration, spray foam insulation and air purification services. Check our website to find out more about our commercial refrigeration services and contact us for any of your HVAC needs.

Image provided by iStock

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