Things To Consider When Buying Commercial Refrigeration Equipment

Whether you are a restaurant owner, catering company, school, or office manager, chances are you need to invest in commercial refrigeration equipment to accommodate your business operations. Industrial refrigerator systems are necessary to store ingredients, food, and beverages for your employees and customers, and any other products or chemicals that must be stored in a cool environment. As you may already know, a lot goes into deciding which unit will support your needs best because they all come in different sizes, efficiency levels, and prices, and you need to know which make and model will site your business needs best.

Here at Leading Edge Mechanical Inc, we install all types of commercial refrigeration units across many different commercial industries. We possess a breadth of knowledge and expertise and have used it to help countless customers find the perfect unit for their businesses. If you are in the market to make a new purchase for your space and need help choosing the perfect one that fits your preferred price point, we compiled a list of top things to consider.

Determine the Dimensions

No one wants to waste money on a refrigerator that doesn't fit in their kitchen; therefore, measuring the footprint of the space allotted to an appliance is necessary to determine custom dimensions. In order to do this, you need to know how much of an opening a fridge has, its height, width, and depth. Knowing the interior cubic feet will allow you to see how much storage space it has and if it fits your space. If you only have a limited amount of space for the unit, you want to be mindful of size when making your purchase so you are not stuck with a commercial refrigerator that is too big for use.

When we are hired to install a new unit into a commercial space, we pay attention to the dimensions of the area it will be installed in. Doing this helps us filter our search for units that fit the dimension requirements.

How Much Food Will be Stored 

Knowing how much food, on average, will be stored is necessary when choosing the perfect unit. It prevents you from buying something too large so you don’t overspend on a unit, and waste money on expensive energy bills down the road.

For restaurant owners, knowing your menu and the ingredients will help you determine which unit will serve you best. You'll need to estimate stock purchases and how much space you need for the ingredients. It will also be necessary to determine whether you need a fridge and freezer or only one. In our experience, all restaurant owners require both units, so it will be essential to find enough room to accommodate both. If you run a grocery store, your needs will be vastly different. You will need multiple commercial refrigerators to accommodate large amounts of inventory that will be replenished regularly.

As you can see, every business has unique needs, and it is necessary to determine precisely how much inventory you will have in storage daily.

The Refrigerator Setup

If you know what size refrigerator you would like to buy, consider the configuration of your kitchen and what type of unit will work best for your business and the space. There are many configurations for commercial refrigerators including the following:

Reach-In Commercial Refrigerator: Reach-in refrigerators are among the most popular appliances in commercial kitchens and are most commonly used in restaurants, cafes, pizzerias, and other food-serving establishments. They can help you lower energy consumption, reduce food waste, and save money because of their efficient setup and design, which helps optimize food storage capacity while keeping food easily accessible. They come in various styles to choose from, including ones with solid doors, glass doors, half doors, and more. If you are looking for a refrigerator that provides easy access to food storage, a reach-in model will be perfect for you.

Counter-Top Commercial Refrigerator: A countertop refrigerator is most suited on top of counters or placed in front of customers, allowing the retailer to showcase their food and beverage items at the point of sale. As such, these units are more commonly purchased by retail owners but are also common in restaurants and bars as they usually require countertop cooling for their for-sale items.

Additionally, these conventional units are used for prep lines as they fit perfectly into smaller spaces. They are also useful for retailers that sell quick self-serve items such as pre-made sandwiches, salads, and drinks.

Do Your Homework

Once you've narrowed your search to a few units that will fit your space and accommodate your business needs, we highly recommend you review and research the specifications to help you select the best one.


When you are researching the different manufacturers, the best approach is to focus on details that will set each one apart from the others, including the following:


  • Online reviews
  • Details of the service and manufacturers warranty
  • The score of Energy Star certification
  • Energy efficiency rating
  • Ensure the make and model is up to date with food safety codes


Gathering these details will help you make the final decision and choose a high-quality unit. 


Final Thoughts

Now that you have an idea of what to look for when making such a large purchase for your business, it should be easier to make the right choice. The most important takeaway here is to find a unit that is perfect for your business. What works for one may not be the best choice for someone else, so keep that in mind. If you made your purchase and are ready to install your new refrigerator, Leading Edge Mechanical Inc is a certified commercial refrigeration installer, and we would be happy to help. Get in touch with our office, and we will send over one of our team members to inspect your space and prepare for the installation so you can begin using it immediately. We can be contacted at (218) 237-5125.