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Commercial Fridge Buying Guide

26 Jan 2021, 6:28 PM

Commercial Fridge
Buying guide

Commercial fridges are a staple for any food establishment. While all fridges basically serve the same function of keeping food and drink fresh and safe for consumption, there are many different types and designs out there.

When it comes to choosing a commercial fridge, space, function, cost-effectiveness and aesthetics all need to be considered. However, as some types of fridge are designed with a specific function in mind, it's best to do some research before you purchase.

Here is a detailed look at the different options of fridge available along with their features and benefits to help you choose the right fridge to suit your needs.

Typically a cabinet fridge is an essential in most commercial kitchens. Their practical design means they're easily accessible for staff, who can simply reach in to fetch the item they need. They are also incredibly versatile and can store a range of items from fresh and cooked produce to drinks and desserts.

Cabinet fridges come in a variety of designs and sizes, so can fit many different spaces. Our cabinet fridge range includes one or two-door units, slimline designs, and larger capacity models to suit all manner of business needs.

For a dual-purpose commercial fridge that maximises space, counter fridges can be ideal. These specialised refrigerators come with a robust worktop that can be used as a preparation area.

As the refrigerated storage lies underneath, it is an effective fridge unit for busy establishments, as the need to walk around to source needed ingredients is reduced. For that reason, it's often popular with businesses such as pizzerias and cafes. However, counter fridges can also be useful for smaller kitchens where space is at a premium.

Walk-in fridges have a much larger storage capacity and allow easier access. Designed for the storage of bulk ingredients, walk-in fridges are also heavily insulated to keep the food fresh and safe. Typically, cafeterias such as ones in schools or colleges, large-scale establishments and bigger restaurants can often benefit from a walk-in fridge.

Our range of walk-in fridges showcases many different designs and capacities, catering to all sorts of food establishments, regardless of size.

In a commercial kitchen, an under-counter fridge can have a multitude of benefits. They are ideal for smaller kitchens where there is a need to maximise workspace. However, they are also useful in larger businesses, where you can use them as additional storage.

As they are designed to be a compact solution, they can easily be placed out of the way under the counter and at the same time be easily accessible for staff.

Under counter fridges can be used in bars for storing bottled drinks or cooking areas where there is a need to access fresh ingredients quickly. Many also feature splashbacks to facilitate easier cleaning.

Low fridges, also known as base fridges, are perfect if you wish to further optimise the space available in your kitchen. Low fridges typically stand at knee height and are designed for the purpose of placing other kitchen equipment on top of them. They are both sturdy and durable allowing for larger kitchen appliances, such as convection ovens or chargrills, to be placed on top of them. This type of fridge is extremely versatile because it can be set to either chilled or frozen without the need for two separate appliances. Once again this fridge type offers gastronorm compatibility in addition to various configuration options including single or double drawer options.

You will find many options of base fridges in our Polar Counter Refrigeration section.

Display fridges are specifically designed for aesthetically pleasing front of house use and are perfect for maximising visibility as well as sales of your frozen goods. There is an extensive range of configuration options for these display fridges to choose from dependent on what suits your needs. Read our guide A Restaurateur's Guide To Display Fridges And Freezers for further information.

Food that has been cooked for future consumption needs to be cooled quickly from 70°C to 3°C in less than 90 minutes to be safe to eat and to adhere to food safety legislation. When freezing the food, it needs to be cooled from 70°C to -18°C in less than 240 minutes.  Regular fridges and freezers cannot do this.

Blast chillers and blast freezers serve the purpose of quickly decreasing the temperature of cooked foods in order to meet food safety guidelines. If food isn’t going to be eaten immediately, blast chillers ensure your perfectly cooked food doesn’t continue cooking, and bacteria doesn’t begin to grow and potentially become dangerous.

Meat fridges, as the name suggests, are specifically designed to store cuts of meat in a professional or commercial kitchen. These fridges ensure that the contents is stored at a specific temperature, something which is extremely important when refrigerating meats, fish and poultry.

You will find many options of meat fridges in our Polar Meat Fridges section.

Other things to consider when choosing a commercial fridge

With so many different features, it can be overwhelming when it comes to choosing the right commercial fridge. Here are some things to bear in mind.

Choosing the right size and type

Aside from the obvious question of what dimensions you need your fridge to be, it's important to also know what type and how much food you need to store. Always check the capacity of the fridge unit to ensure it meets your needs. Is your space suited for a two-door unit or would a slimline, one-door fridge fit better?

Another question to ask is where the fridge unit will be. Whereas a walk-in or cabinet fridge is fitting for a kitchen, it may not be ideal if your space is customer-facing. For fridges that are in public view, a counter or under-counter unit may be more attractive.

Energy costs

Being on all day and night, a commercial fridge unit is possibly one of the hardest-working kitchen appliances and, as such, it's vital to make sure they are as energy-efficient as possible.

Our True Refrigeration range uses the latest in energy-efficient equipment and can be profitable in the long-term as they reduce energy costs for your business.

Energy efficiency

Nowadays, energy management targets are a hot topic in the business world. If sustainability and environmental consciousness is an important matter for your business, a refrigeration unit that meets your specific requirements as well as helps you to lower your carbon footprint is possible.

As a leader in commercial refrigeration, True is committed to providing sustainable commercial refrigeration products helping you achieve your targets to reduce energy consumption with more reliable, eco-friendly models.

Warranty length

Fixing a commercial fridge can be a costly endeavour. To that end, all the True products we recommend are backed by a comprehensive 5 years' parts and labour warranty at no additional cost to give you complete peace of mind.

If you're looking for your next commercial fridge, why not browse our extensive range of refrigeration units.

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