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    Walk-in Freezer & Cooler Troubleshooting Guide

    Walk-in Freezer & Cooler Troubleshooting Guide

    Having a systematic approach for walk-in freezer and cooler maintenance is the best guide.

    The walk-in freezer or walk-in cooler is a major part of many convenience stores, cafeterias, and restaurants. It is also a big energy user but is rarely even thought of until an issue happens.

    Walk-in cooler and freezer problems like compressor failure and failure to maintain pressure can result in costly loss of products inside the cooler. These issues, as well as high energy use can actually be avoided by maintaining equipment and taking action.

    How Evaporators Work

    Moisture from air will freeze on the cooling coils of the freezer and will form a barrier from heat transfer. The air flow will then decrease due to ice buildup on the passages. Each evaporator will have a defrost cycle that will melt the built up ice on the coils. Water from the ice is drained from the freezer, normally.

    Ice On The Evaporator 

    It isn’t unusual to find the evaporator in a poor state. For an evaporator unit, whenever water isn’t drained right or the ice has not melted it could cause ice on the evaporator. Whenever the coil freezes, heat transfer is reduced which makes the compressor work longer and harder. It works harder due to suction pressure drops which makes the compressor work at a higher pressure, which requires more power. It will work longer because the heat transfer is reduced. Whenever there is excessive ice buildup, the compressor will run constantly and the freezer temperature won’t be maintained.

    Water Won’t Drain Out Of Freezer

    When the ice melts, the water has to be drain out of the freezer. This does not always happen. Trapped water that freezes can do a lot of damage, especially to an older freezer where the cracks allow water to come in and then it freezes and expands. Stalagmites and stalactites of ice will show up in the freezer are a reason to take action to avoid a lot of expensive damage.

    How Condensers Work 

    A condenser coil in the system will remove heat from the refrigeration system. It isn’t unusual to find the condenser in an enclosed space or spaces that do not have a lot air flow to remove heat from the space. The temperature near the compressor will result in a high head pressure for the compressor, which increases the power of the compressor.

    Condenser Should Be We Ventilated 

    To remove the heat, the condenser needs to be in a ventilated area where the temperature is controlled to allow heat to be removed. Enclosed spaces will need openings for exhaust and cooling air intake. In most cases, there will be a need for a fan to move enough air into the space. Whenever the heat from the condenser is not needed, it should be sent outside.

    There are times where it can be used for heating areas such as a dry storage room, controls can be installed to direct the flow inside for heating and outside when heat is not required.

    Check Condenser Coils Regularly

    Condenser coils need to be regularly checked to see if they are clean. Debris and dust will act like ice buildup. This insulates the heat transfer and reduces air flow, which makes the compressor run longer and harder which may cause the compressor to fail.

    Inspecting Refrigerated Space & Shell

    However, if the space does not have any equipment or mechanical parts, it still needs to be checked. The freezer or cooler shell need to be regularly inspected for loose panels or installation and leaks. Leaks and other issues in the shell can cause too much moisture to get in which can cause a bigger issue. The door will be a main part of the cooler. Doors need to be sealed right to remove air infiltration which will increase the cooling load and cause a build up of moisture on the evaporator and in the space on as well. A buildup of frost on the door is normal as the whenever a door heater starts to fail, it will either keep it from closing or freeze shut. Proper care needs to be taken whenever placing items inside of the freezer. If the freezer is overcrowded with things, or things are in front of the evaporator fans, the circulation of air will be reduced as well as the performance of the refrigeration system.

    Walk In Cooler & Freezer Maintenance Helps Avoid Energy Waste & Repairs

    Walk In Cooler/Freezer maintenance and operation issues need to be addressed to avoid costly repairs and excessive energy use as well as potential loss of product.

    A/C & Refrigeration Co

    A/C & Refrigeration Co is an expert in Walk In Cooler Repair & Walk In Freezer Repair in Phoenix, Arizona. If you live in the Phoenix Valley and could use our services give us a call today at (602) 488-7161.

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  • Posted by Tyler Meredith on July 12, 2017, 8:28 pm

    I like that you talk about how the temperature around the compressor can influence the performance. I didn’t realize that it’s so important for the condenser to be in a well-ventilated area although it makes sense that it should be. This could be helpful for any freezer although one that’s used for commercial uses might get more usage so making sure it’s set up right could be helpful.

    Reply →
  • Posted by Kenneth Gladman on July 14, 2017, 10:40 pm

    I have been noticing some stalagmites of ice in the walk in freezer where I work. I will have to mention it to my supervisor to avoid a bigger problem down the road. It must be an issue with the drains that could be causing it.

    Reply →
  • Posted by Walk-in Freezer & Cooler Troubleshooting Guide – AC Repair on January 18, 2018, 5:26 pm

    […] “Walk-in Freezer & Cooler Troubleshooting Guide.” A/C & Refrigeration Co, 11 Aug. 2017, acandrefrigeration.com/walk-cooler-freezer-troubleshooting-guide/. […]

    Reply →
  • Posted by Ridley on January 30, 2018, 1:21 am

    It’s interesting to learn about walk in freezers and fridges. I didn’t realize that ice forms on the evaporator, but that it should be melted and drained. Are these commercial units different than a regular home fridge?

    Reply →
  • Posted by Joseph Jensen on September 3, 2018, 8:12 am

    I have an old army surplus walking cooler that has been working but it’s low on Freon what type of Freon do I use

    Reply →

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