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Energy optimization tips for commercial freezers

Top Seven Ways to Optimize Energy Use of Commercial Freezers

Posted by | 08-03-2021

Did you notice a recent spike in your electric bill? Every dollar counts, so it’s only normal to be concerned about any expense that’s trending upwards. Everyone knows that it takes a lot of electricity to keep essential commercial appliances running, especially freezers. But their cost should never outweigh their benefits.

Unlike other expenses, you can’t afford to simply unplug a commercial freezer — even when it’s bleeding out valuable dollars of energy use. Doing so guarantees massive inventory loss, which hurts your revenue stream tremendously. So, what should you do to maintain climate-controlled storage that is so crucial to food safety, while keeping energy costs in check?

From regular maintenance to retrofitting with new, energy-efficient parts, there’s a lot you can do to maximize your investment and lower energy costs. Check this guide to optimizing your commercial freezer’s energy use, and earning valuable savings:

Energy Consumption of Commercial Freezers

Did you know that up to 30% of the energy used to heat or cool a building, as well as power a commercial refrigeration unit, is often wasted? Even brand-new, top-of-the-line commercial freezers for sale eventually decline in energy-efficient function, resulting in higher consumption and utility costs.

Over time, commercial freezers age and decline. This could be due to their design, such as the size of their compressors, or the use of old refrigerants. Some of these freezers may not even be designed correctly from the onset, resulting in inefficient function well before reaching their maximum lifespan. These issues reduce energy efficiency and exponentially increase energy bills — often at a faster pace than you can afford

How to Optimize Your Freezer’s Energy Consumption

1. Conduct an energy optimization audit

Think of it as a maintenance check — and it starts like one. A certified commercial freezer technician can perform an Energy Optimization Audit to look at how much energy your commercial freezer uses and whether it’s equivalent to its function. The best commercial freezers function at optimal cooling efficiency throughout their lifespan.

During the audit, your technician will look at:

  • Type of refrigerant and current levels, as well as the presence of leaks
  • Leaks in your HVAC and ventilation systems that may be affecting your commercial refrigeration equipment
  • Type of lighting used and whether these are energy-efficient LED lights
  • The temperature control system or thermostat
  • The status of variable speed motors
  • The condition of the compressors.

2. Make smart energy decisions

Now that you know the cooling efficiency of your commercial freezer, what can you do about it? The results of your Energy Optimization Audit should guide you towards smarter, better decisions regarding your continued use of refrigeration equipment and fulfilling your bottom line.

Based on the results of the Audit, you can begin installing upgrades to your commercial freezers, as well as implementing energy-saving measures. Depending on the cost of these and their long-term return on investment, you can also look at other more advanced and energy-efficient commercial freezers for sale for better value and even energy rebates.

3. Schedule regular maintenance

Regular preventative maintenance service is the best way to monitor the energy efficiency and function of your commercial freezer. A professional technician can perform regular inspections to detect signs of increased energy consumption and inefficiency early on and recommend repairs or upgrades to prevent widespread damage and inventory loss. 

Common preventative maintenance repairs include fixing leaks and replacing the compressors or HVAC system. For severe damage that costs more to fix, your technician may recommend a complete system upgrade. These measures restore energy-efficient function and guarantee the profitability of your foodservice operation.

Although it’s an ongoing investment, regular maintenance and early upgrades are still more affordable and sustainable than dealing with the fallout of an emergency breakdown. The cost of inventory loss alone, along with lost earning potential during the time it takes to get your refrigeration system back up and running is a lot more expensive — a lot more cash flowing out all at once, especially without a financial contingency in place.

4. Check the seals

Not all energy optimization hacks require professional assistance; there are many measures you follow every day to ensure the optimal function of your commercial freezer. Rising energy costs can begin anywhere, or be exacerbated by the accumulated impact of daily habits.

For instance, while relatively minor, the door seals provide added temperature control inside a commercial freezer. These seals should be tight and compact — no leaks or cracks that allow cool air to escape and force the freezer to work overtime to compensate for the shift in temperature. Similarly, check the gaskets on any pipes to spot water leaks.

5. Check for water and rust

Aside from pipes, leaks and rust can also occur in drains and hoses. To help maintain the energy-efficient function of your commercial freezer, make sure to check for cracks on the hoses, as well as clogs in the drains. When undetected for extended periods, these minor problems can build up and reduce the efficiency of your commercial freezer, inevitably driving up energy consumption and cost.

6. Install variable-frequency drives

What are VFDs, you may ask? These components play a major role in the function and energy consumption of commercial freezers. VFDs regulate the amount of power used by the motors and compressors and ensure that they function using the least amount — and as a result, cost — of energy. Ask your freezer technician to install one for increased cooling efficiency.

7. Install electronically-communicated motors

Every commercial freezer requires reliable fans for optimal cooling function but these also represent the bulk of energy consumption. But did you know that you can opt to replace them?  ECMs are a viable alternative to fans that require powerful, high-energy motors. Not only do they function as well as standard motors but they consume much less energy in the process.

For more information about energy consumption, or upgrade to an energy-efficient commercial freezer, call Ancaster Food Equipment at 866-711-5486, or contact us here.

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