How to Keep Your Display Coolers Clean
The best way to keep your display coolers fully functional and ensure they help market products effectively is to keep them clean. Not only do clouded displays obscure views that hamper sales, but bacteria-filled, stained, and dirty coolers become a food safety issue — the fallout of which, like foodborne illnesses and product recalls, can be impossible to come back from.
Tips for Maintaining Clean Fridge Displays
All of these reasons should convince you to clean your fridge displays — mostly if they have been neglected in your regular cleaning and maintenance checklist. It’s not too late to prevent an emergency breakdown, lower utility bills, and restore optimal food safety and product placement in your fridge displays. Here’s how:
Clean Fridge Displays in Every Section
It’s no secret that grocery stores are large — they occupy a lot of space to house various essentials like food, household supplies, and personal hygiene items. Major retailers have even combined grocery shopping with other lifestyle products like apparel, electronics, and furniture to create a one-stop shopping experience. All of these show that grocery stores can be challenging to maintain.
But this doesn’t mean that regular cleaning has to be an impossible task. The combination of dry and wet goods like fresh meat, fish, poultry, dairy, deli items, and ready-to-eat foods can easily cause a mess in fridge displays, impacting the customer experience, visual merchandising, and even food safety compliance.
Establish a Regular Cleaning Schedule
The easiest way to prevent this is to establish a regular cleaning routine that includes fridge displays. Make this part of every store opening and closing routine, and you’ll quickly move more product when glass displays aren’t wet, clouded, or smudged with fingerprints. Plus, with regular cleaning, the job is guaranteed to get easier each time. Your team will get used to wiping down shelves and the glass panes of fridge displays, and cleaning up spills, so much that these become routine and easier to clean.
Earn Back Lost Visual Merchandising from Dirty Displays
Smudged, fogged up, and stained fridge displays cost money: it’s a waste of energy bills to illuminate unsightly product displays brightly and only highlight the mess, which can also cost sales. Plus, dirty fridge displays are a hotbed of bacteria and infection, which pushes the fridge to work overtime, eventually shortening its lifespan, and can even harm food safety.
The first step to addressing these is figuring out why condensation forms on glass fridge displays, which obstructs a clear view of products and encourages customers to wipe them with their dirty hands. Condensation forms because the fridge’s frequent opening and closing causes warm air to enter the interior cabinet and mix with the cold air inside. This exposes the fridge’s contents to humidity, which leads to condensation on the door and gasket.
The good news is, there’s a simple fix — simply wipe down the glass door of a fridge display with a soft cloth. To prevent recurring condensation, re-examine the fridge’s placement, and make sure it is in a well-ventilated area.
Check Humidity Exposure
Check the thermostat and door gaskets to ensure that the fridge interior holds consistent, food-safe temperatures and warm air exposure are minimized. If the fridge display is an older model, check if its glass pane is made of double- or triple-layer tempered heat reflection, which prevents condensation. A clear display reduces opening and closing since customers can quickly spot their favourite products and only retrieve them for purchase.
Book a Regular Fridge Maintenance Service
A crucial part of fridge maintenance is cleaning vital components like the condenser, coils, and fans. These parts are hard to get to, and without proper handling, can be damaged in the process. That’s why it’s best to leave them to the professionals.
It’s also best to make sure they’re cleaned regularly. While you can apply temporary fixes like plugging the leaks, liquid sludge can still form on the fridge base and cust cakes on the fans. These can affect the performance of fridge displays, leaving merchandise poorly stored, and over time, will cause them to decline in quality.
When to Book a Maintenance Service
Regular maintenance depends on your equipment use — that’s a lot of hours and little downtime for grocery stores, which is why you need to be strategic and establish a regular schedule early on.
For best results, book a fridge display maintenance every 30 to 90 days to ensure that coils are cleaned once a week. In the meantime, you can task staff with regularly wiping down the interiors and exteriors but don’t allow them to take on maintenance procedures, especially if they’re not trained for them. Doing so risks injuries from sharp metal sheets and coil surfaces and further damage to the equipment.
Use a Pressure Washer
Professional fridge display technicians can also use a specially designed indoor pressure washer to ensure a thorough clean. Fridge pressure washers are carefully calibrated to exert just the right amount of pressure and water volume to avoid damaging delicate components. Your technician can also follow up with a three-stage wet vacuum to recover water, soils, and other deposits and prevent drain line clogging.
To learn more about keeping your display coolers clean, call Ancaster Food Equipment at 866-711-5486, or contact us here.