When you own a restaurant, keeping the food that you prepare at its optimal storage temperatures is crucial to the safety of your customers and the quality of the finished product. However, if your refrigeration system goes bad, this becomes quite difficult to do. Periodically, look for the following signs that there is an issue with your commercial refrigeration system that would require that you have it repaired as soon as possible to avoid food spoilage.
1. Ice Forms on the Interior Walls or the Door's Exterior
When your commercial refrigerator is working properly, it is able to keep the foods cold enough while not keeping them too cold. This process is regulated by the alternating cycles of cooling and defrosting to ensure the maintenance of the correct temperature.
However, if the defrost cycle is inhibited, you may start to see ice forming on the interior walls of the refrigeration unit. Eventually, you may even see ice forming on the exterior of the door, which shows that there is a severe issue with the regulation of the interior temperature.
When the issue gets to this point, your food may start to show signs of freezer burn, which will ruin the texture and flavor of your restaurant's dishes. This is also a sign that your refrigerator may be on the verge of breaking down completely, so do not delay in having it checked out by a professional.
2. Extreme Variations in the Temperatures of the Foods Stored Inside
Another sign that there is a serious problem with your commercial refrigerator is the presence of extreme variations in temperature inside of the unit. When you place a thermometer in different areas of the refrigerator, you may see that some are too warm to safely keep food while others are extremely cold.
Variations in temperature such as these can be caused by either a low level of coolant that is being cycled through unevenly or a bad compressor. If the coolant is low, you may be able to have a professional refill it. However, if the condenser is bad, you probably need to replace the entire system.
If you notice either of the above signs when looking at your restaurant's refrigerator, you need to have it looked at as soon as possible to ensure that you keep the food at the optimal temperature for safety and quality assurance. Contact a commercial refrigeration service to have them inspect the system so they can determine whether repairs are in order or if you need to replace the unit.