Our walk in cooler/freezer panels are strong and self-supporting; they offer true edge-to-edge insulation with our PPC (Premium Panel Construction). We combine responsible, 21st century production techniques along with elegance of design. We offer an energy efficient walk in cooler that you can still be proud to show off. All metal surfaces are enamel coated for brightness, durability, and ease of maintenance – not to mention, our walk in coolers look very stylish. We don’t require lumber building materials for support like others, which will eventually decay and harbor mold growth. Properly cared for, our walk in coolers will outlast the buildings which house them, providing a lifetime of economy and good looks.
We have invested heavily in our manufacturing equipment and processes, to help hold down the continual escalating material and labor costs. Our greatest challenge as a manufacturer is to get our message to you.
Our competitors prefer to focus on price vs. value. The details they provide about their walk in coolers are vague. We have purchased our competitors’ products to analyze time after time and still have yet to be surprised by our findings. Walk in coolers marketed as just the same as SRC appear to look similar in pictures, but the major components differ greatly. SRC will provide detailed equipment specifications and its benefits to help you compare – this way, you can ensure you know exactly what kind of walk in cooler you are receiving. Demand this information from all companies that you are considering. We’re confident SRC will remain your preferred choice.
Our goal is two-fold:
#1) We will not be undersold! We work VERY hard to ensure that our price is fair, and the products you’re getting are the best available to provide you with years of tireless service.
#2) We will not sacrifice the quality of our walk in coolers to make a sale!
If you feel someone is offering you what appears to be a better deal, do yourself a favor and give us a call. You may discover that we are a breath of fresh air in an otherwise high-pressure industry. Our sales professionals do not work on commission, so our main goal is getting you the right cooler for your situation, not the most expensive one.
We do our best to help customers in a variety of situations. Whether your older walk in cooler has stopped working, you are planning for a future remodel, or have just signed a lease for a new building, we can help! For walk in cooler remodels and new construction, our detailed computer drawings allow your contractors to continue working while waiting delivery of your order.
Always remember, you are purchasing equipment that will be the focal point of your business – and with proper care, your walk in cooler or freezer will last for the next twenty years. Purchase decisions based solely upon availability may solve an immediate crisis, but rarely proves wise in retrospect as a long-term solution.
We counsel our customers to initially take the element of time out of the equation. Select the equipment that will best fill your needs both now and in the future. Remember that you will be working and depending on your walk in cooler or freezer for many years!
Now that you have reached a decision on walk in cooler you are comfortable with, we can go to work for you. Knowing your time constraints, we can ask many of our long-term vendors to expedite your order and release the equipment early. Oftentimes, we can gain weeks on a project. You can assist us in processing the order by returning signed approvals of all computer drawings and related sales paperwork in a timely manner.
In most cases, we can manufacture our insulated walk in cooler panels faster than our door supplier can ship. We generally try to time production so that you receive all of the shipments in a close period of time. It may be helpful for a rush order to ship the panels ahead of time. This way, you can assemble your walk in cooler and proceed with site work until you receive the doors.
When all is said and done, you will be left with a walk in cooler or freezer that will serve you well in the long run – not something that you must make do with until your next purchase.
The more of the project you can do yourself, the better you will be able to hold down the overall installation expense.
Refrigeration is a highly technical trade, requiring specialized education and years of apprenticeship and ongoing training. Support equipment, required tools, and the fact that they make house calls contribute to the hourly fees that a good technician can command. You should try to focus expensive labor strictly on what they do best; you can minimize costs by asking others to help you with simple assembly tasks. The same guidelines should apply to your electricians.
Our walk in coolers, freezers, and display doors are easily assembled by anyone with basic carpentry skills. Knowing how to work with a tape measure and carpenter’s level are the most important skills. The knowledge that you can save hundreds of dollars in is a great motivator to get involved in the installation.
As a rule of thumb, you can budget anywhere from 25% to 40% of your overall equipment cost as an amount to factor towards a “turn-key” installation. Amounts can vary due to site conditions, compressor location, and the labor costs in your region.
The best time to make this statement is prior to ordering your walk in cooler or freezer! Normal system sizing provides product temperatures of 38 degrees. Trying to achieve lower temperatures with a standard walk in cooler system will lead to extended run times, frozen evaporator coils, and eventual premature equipment failure.
To properly handle these lower temperature requirements, you should consider a keg cooler refrigeration system. When a system is operated below 35 degrees, frost and ice will begin to build up on an Evaporator Coil. If allowed to build, this frosting will restrict the airflow across the coil. Ice formation will then increase, and your box and product temperature will rise.
A keg cooler system features freezer style evaporator coils. These coils feature wider fin spacing and heated defrost elements to counteract this frost formation. Box and product temperatures will be stable, and with a properly sized system, you will be able to hold any temperature you specify up front.
If your keg cooler will include glass display doors, you may wish to consider the heated glass option. Your glass display doors will be more susceptible to sweating without this option, even if your store is air-conditioned. Glass heat is not an option that can be added on at a later time. It must be included at the time of order.
Throughout history there have been many different types of insulation used for walk in coolers. Some common types you may be familiar with are fiberglass, cellulose, and styrofoam. A walk in cooler must be an excellent insulator as well as structurally solid. New federal energy standards recently instituted narrow the field; therefore, modern construction utilizes rigid plastic insulation. This type of insulation eliminates the massive heat loss that will occur through wood framing materials still used by others.
So, step one in selecting a high efficiency walk in cooler is avoiding wood frame construction. Step two is deciding between the two available choices of plastic insulation that both surpass federal standards.
Polyurethane is initially the highest R-value per inch insulation available for walk in coolers/freezers. The raw ingredients are mixed, injected, and cured at the time of panel manufacture. Urethane bonds with the metal and fasteners to provide a long-lasting panel. Polyurethane’s main drawback is that water vapor can build up within the insulation over time; eventually this will degrade its insulating properties.
Extruded polystyrene is the other alternative for walk in coolers/freezers. It is produced in large batches by US based chemical manufacturers and extruded by specialized machinery into usable sized panels (in controlled conditions). The end product is a highly efficient walk in cooler with R-values rivaling that of polyurethane. Extruded polystyrene has an added advantage of repelling water vapor and does not absorb moisture over time. It also carries a 50 Year Thermal Warranty through DOW which shows not only the long life characteristics of the product, but how much DOW believes in that product to last the test of time and still continue performing the same as the day it was purchased.
SRC Refrigeration has chosen to offer both types of insulation for our customers rather than favor one type over the other. This provides us with flexibility in manufacturing and several ways to cut down on lead times. Whichever choice you make for your walk in cooler or freezer, we have a solution to offer your business.
Additional information about insulation can be viewed: here
Because of our modular design and construction, future expandability is available with all SRC walk in coolers. Unlike a wood framed walk in cooler, our panels can be easily unlocked and moved with no damage and minimal effort. Our insulation won’t degrade over time and will be just as energy efficient ten years from now as it is today.
If you know expanding your walk in cooler is a realistic possibility in the future, then please discuss it with your salesperson. We can make sure that our design will facilitate the future plan for your walk in cooler in the most economical way. You may want to consider upgrading your refrigeration system initially to accommodate the future expansion. A small investment up front can save you from facing the expense of replacing the entire walk in cooler system when you eventually expand. Another way to save is to avoid having electrical or refrigeration lines pass through panels – these will be necessarily removed when you expand. Inform your contractors about your future plans.
All walk in coolers will ship via a common carrier from our factory in Sterling Heights, MI. Glass doors will ship from California. Refrigeration systems will ship from Georgia or Illinois. You will be provided with terminal information so you can arrange for your own delivery times. You will be responsible for receiving and inspecting your shipment. Common carrier drivers will not assist in unloading the equipment. It is vital that a thorough inspection is made at time of delivery and any damage is noted in writing. Our job coordinators will assist in claim remediation if shipping damage should occur. They can also provide detailed receiving advice if required.
Absolutely! We will be more than happy to supply any individual component or the entire package. Some things to consider:
1) If the equipment is approaching ten years old, you may want to consider replacement anyway. You are reaching the downward curve of the expected service life of some of the components. Installation costs will be the same for older re-used equipment or brand new equipment.
2) If you increase the size of the new box, the existing system may not have sufficient capacity to handle the additional heat load. If you can provide us with the model numbers and manufacturer’s name from the existing equipment, we can usually do the research necessary to predetermine if there will be a problem. If necessary, we will then recommend additional equipment.
This discussion is not just limited to the refrigeration system. Perhaps your display doors are in excellent shape and you would like to reuse them in your new walk in cooler system. We can manufacture the display to accommodate the net opening required for your existing doors as well.
Indoor air-cooled condensing units consist of a compressor motor and fan assembly that is mounted on a base plate. Condensing units make noise and give off heat – both of which can be objectionable depending on the space they are located in. Kitchen locations can be problematic to condensing units due to heat and grease over time. Compressors 1½ horsepower and above produce a significant amount of noise which must be taken into account. They should be located either outdoors or in a basement. Another alternative is a water-cooled condensing unit. They are much quieter and greatly reduce heat output of the walk in cooler. However, since they use water for cooling, they can be very expensive to operate. Consequently, they are rarely used.
Outdoor condensing units are preassembled and enclosed in a protective weather-hood. They contain all necessary controls to operate in an exposed, outdoor location. They remove a big source of noise and heat load from your interior space. The walk in cooler will also operate more efficiently in colder weather. The initial cost of both equipment and installation will be somewhat higher, but there is a quick payback in efficiency and the atmosphere of your working environment.
As part of your order acknowledgement paperwork, you will receive a separate sheet(s) to provide to your electrician. It is printed on yellow paper so it is easy to recognize. If you need these specifications for your walk in cooler sooner, please call our service department. We can always fax a copy of the specifications over to you or to your electrician.
You will also receive a copy along with the walk in cooler shipment. It will be in the same envelope that the job plans are in.
Heated glass on display doors can virtually eliminate walk in cooler door fogging in almost all conditions. Properly conditioned stores should not need them, but tropical locations or stores with marginal HVAC systems should consider this inexpensive option. Shelf dividers and gravity feed shelving can be extremely valuable for high traffic locations. Upgraded doors with full-length handles are becoming very popular. Rolling milk carts and drip trays are available – these make cleaning up spills much easier.
“Metro” storage shelving packages are available to maximize the storage space in your walk in cooler. We can custom design a package based on your input. Mobile carts can also be great time savers depending on your operation. Viewing ports in walk in cooler doors can be handy to avoid collisions and help eliminate opening the doors unnecessarily. Strip curtains and PVC inner doors are low cost high payback energy savers. Extra lighting is inexpensive at the time of ordering your walk in cooler system. A good rule of thumb is 1 watt per square foot of space should be provided. Electronic temperature controls are available for precise control of temperature and differential, as are temperature alarms for critical storage. These controls can be linked to your building alarm system.
There are different advantages in choosing a factory installation or in sub-contracting the installation of your walk in cooler.
Factory installations will allow you to focus on other areas of your business. Coordination of the deliveries, hiring the sub-contractors, and securing proof of insurance / workers compensation coverage will be taken care of. Also, the physical part of receiving, inspecting, and installing your walk in cooler will be completed for you. The larger the job, the more time and energy this may take. You will also receive a 90-day labor warranty on your walk in cooler equipment following start-up. However, these benefits do come with a price. You will be paying for these services through us.
If you have some comfort level with dealing with subcontractors, then you can save yourself some costs through purchasing your walk in cooler equipment on a “self-installed” basis. You will be purchasing only the equipment through us, the same as any contractor or builder would. We will provide you with shipping information and tracking numbers, but you will be responsible for coordinating the deliveries with the freight lines. Either you or your agents will be responsible for all aspects of receiving, inspecting, and installing the walk in cooler equipment. As a contractor, there are no labor coverages on the walk in cooler equipment (apart from the glass doors). Only the parts and components themselves are under warranty, not the labor involved in replacing them.
The advantage you gain by doing the job yourself is in your ability to “micro-manage” the installation of your work in cooler. Many customers prefer to install the walk in cooler themselves and farm out only the refrigeration and electrical hook-up. Perhaps you have established relationships with installers already, and are comfortable in dealing with them yourself. On larger projects and new construction where you are already working with a general contractor, it may be wise for you to hire them for the walk in cooler installation also. There may be fewer conflicts if they have full control over the project (i.e. allowing them to work with subcontractors that they are familiar with).
All walk in coolers, regardless of style, begin from the ground up. Site preparation will be the key to success. Start with the existing floor. It should be sound, smooth, level and made with a non-absorbing material. If the existing concrete floor is visibly flawed, consider having it leveled prior to your walk in cooler installation. If not, then the walk in cooler will have to be shimmed to compensate. The walk in cooler must be level for the doors to seal properly. Shimming the walk in cooler walls will result in gaps underneath – these will need to be sealed. If the wall panels can rest snugly to the floor, then a bead of silicone caulk is all that’s needed to form a tight seal. Look up as well, and make sure there aren’t any pipes, ductwork, sprinkler heads, etc., in the way. They will be easier to deal with prior to your walk in cooler installation. The overall height of your walk in cooler will be shown on our drawings.
If you have to work with a less than perfect floor, the first step will be to determine the highest point with a carpenter’s level. This is the point where you should begin the installation of your walk in cooler. As you lock together the adjoining panels, use shim stock to raise each seam in line with the starting panel, keeping everything square and plumb as you go (unfortunately, there are no guarantees that the walls of your building are perfectly square and level). Leave at least a few inches of space between the walk in cooler walls and the walls of the building. A trick we use is to lay dimensional lumber at the base of the wall and press the wall panels up against it. This provides an even spacing and gives the panels something solid to rest against. The gap left between the walk in cooler and the outer walls can be enclosed following installation.
If your walk in cooler includes an insulated floor, each floor panel will have to be leveled as it is set in place. Shims must be evenly spaced under the panel. If only the outside edges are shimmed, the floor panel will sag with use over time. Once the floor is leveled and locked together, the walk in cooler wall panels can be set in place. No further leveling should be necessary since the wall panels rest directly on the insulated floor.
Once all the walls are locked together, you can check the overall square of the box by measuring and comparing the opposite corner-to-corner dimensions. Adjust the wall panels till these measurements are the same. You can now set the ceiling panels in place in your walk in cooler. They should lay square with the wall panels. There should be an even seam along the top with no staggered or saw-toothed appearance. Lock down the ceiling, and install any doors, windows, or partition walls supplied with your walk in cooler kit. All of the rough openings should be square and plumb since you have followed correct installation procedures.
Place a bead of silicone in the joint where the wall panel meets the ceiling as well as where it meets the floor. No caulk will be needed wherever there is a rubber gasket seal between the walk in cooler panels. If the gap at the floor seam is too large to caulk, use minimal expansion spray foam (purchased at any hardware store). Spray it under the walk in cooler walls and let it expand and harden. Trim the extra off with a knife and finish the base off with tile or cove base. Use the L-brackets in your parts kit to anchor the inside of the wall panels to the floor.
Prior to delivery we will provide you with tracking numbers (“Pro numbers”) and phone numbers of the delivery terminals. Because you have purchased equipment “Factory Direct”, there may be as many as four separate shipments to coordinate. If you have purchased your walk in cooler equipment on a “self-install” basis, you will be responsible to coordinate these delivery times with the individual carriers. You should be able to arrange for all items to be delivered on the same day.
When the delivery truck arrives, a minimum of four people are recommended to unload your walk in cooler equipment (two in the truck, and two on the ground). Common carrier drivers are not required to unload your shipment. The best way to unload your walk in cooler is to unwrap it on the truck and remove each panel one at a time. This allows for a careful inspection to of each panel.
Important: Note any damage or missing items on the freight bill as you accept delivery. Have the driver initial your notes. Your shipment leaves our factory in perfect condition – following this, the freight carrier assumes guardianship until the time of delivery, at which time ownership is passed to you. Should you sign acceptance of a delivery free and clear of damage, it will be very difficult for you to claim damage at a later time. We will assist you in filing claims if necessary, but it is your responsibility to perform a thorough and careful inspection of your walk in cooler.
Our modular construction allows for easy handling; even the largest walk in coolers can be brought inside through standard doorways. A full size wall panel weighs approximately 65 pounds. There is a 4″ extension piece at the top of all wall panels (“ceiling valance”). Panels should not be carried by or stored on this valance extension or damage can result. If your walk in cooler includes an insulated floor, there will also be a valance at the bottom of the panel. To avoid scratches, lift each panel off the pallet – don’t slide them across each other.
Indoor compressors can weigh upwards of one-hundred pounds; outdoor compressors weigh several times this amount. If your order includes glass doors, these crates can be awkward and heavy as well. This is another reason to have adequate personnel on hand for delivery.
The locking mechanisms for our modular walk in cooler panels are referred to as “cam-locks.” One side of the panel will have at least two male cams (hook) which will connect to an adjacent panel whose edge has the female cams (pin). The male hook is designed to engage the female pin when the 5/16″ cam wrench (provided) is turned clockwise. The pivot for the arm is oddly shaped – as the wrench is tightened, the arm will pull inwards, securing a tight panel-to-panel seal.
Occasionally you will find a male fastener with the hook assembly extended and loose. You will be unable to engage the locking mechanism or lock the panels together. All you need to do is “re-cock” the locking arm. Insert the cam wrench into the cam mechanism and twist the wrench counter-clockwise until you feel resistance. Continue to turn the wrench until you feel the arm bottom out. The hook will now be fully retracted and in position for normal assembly.
If you are placing the walk in cooler on a cement slab that is at ground level with no basement or crawl space underneath, no insulated floor will be necessary.
You will need to provide insulation either on top of, or underneath, any walk in cooler placed over a basement, second story, or crawl space. The refrigeration will pull the heat out of the flooring – if there is warmer air underneath, condensation will form. This will cause damage to the floor material and space below. If you need to provide protection, your options include the following:
1) The floor of your walk in cooler can be insulated from underneath. This has to be done very carefully – any air leaks will still lead to condensation. Many times this is not possible because the underside of the flooring is blocked by obstructions. If the flooring is made of an absorbent material, it will need to be protected with sheet vinyl (or a different moisture barrier).
2) You can purchase an insulated floor for your walk in cooler. This will isolate the refrigerated space and prevent any problems with heat transfer. You will also pick up an additional 15% in energy savings on average. A disadvantage will be a 4″ step-up into the walk in cooler. An optional floor ramp can be ordered. Nonetheless, disadvantages will seem minor when compared to the expense of correcting any structural damage to a building.
3) Some customers prefer to build their own insulated platform. Foam board can be purchased at building centers. Care must be taken to cross-stack the sheets of insulation to eliminate any seams or gaps in the material.
Other floor materials…
A) Concrete with vinyl or ceramic tile – acceptable for a floorless walk in cooler.
B) Concrete with carpeting – do not install a floorless walk in cooler on top of carpeting as the high humidity levels will create mildew and odor. Simply cut the carpeting around the exterior of the walk in cooler and remove it. If you wish to save the carpeting or your landlord prevents you from cutting the carpeting then order the SRC reinforced insulated floor.
C) Concrete with hardwood – it’s recommended you order the SRC reinforced insulated floor to protect the beautiful finish from the high humidity conditions.
If the walk in cooler is in a hot warehouse, garage, or outdoors on a non-insulated slab, consider ordering the SRC reinforced insulated floor. The energy savings alone can help pay back the cost of the reinforced insulated floor.
All Evaporator Coils mounted in walk in coolers and freezers have a drain connection on the bottom. The fitting size of this connection varies by the style of the coil. Excess condensation forms on the cold surfaces inside the coil cabinet and must be carried away from the refrigerated space. Health codes will prevent the drainage of this condensation within the walk in cooler itself. Drain lines in walk in freezers must be run in copper and wrapped with heat tape. Drain lines in walk in coolers can usually be run with PVC drainage material. All drain lines should be properly pitched and trapped. Unions should be provided at the coils for ease of service in the future.
In most cases, local codes will dictate the ultimate destination for this drain line to run. If you are in the planning stages for the building itself, then a floor drain can be added to the construction. It should be placed against the exterior of the cooler or freezer wall. The exact placement will be determined by the individual design of the cooler and the floor plan of the business. We can suggest ideal placements when we have the proper information in our hands.
For an existing structure, then you will usually have to work with the opportunities that present themselves at the site. If no floor drain is available, perhaps there is a sink that can be used. A plumber or your refrigeration contractor could provide advice and assistance with this decision.
Normally wall and ceiling panels will lock together tight and not require caulking. The only exception is when it is difficult to get the box completely leveled and squared. In that case, caulk any panels that are not completely tight to prevent air infiltration.
The only panel seams you need to caulk will be at the floor and also at the ceiling perimeter joints. Apply a generous bead with the silicone we have provided, and using a caulking tool or even your finger, smooth the bead out so that good adhesion is made to both surfaces. Clean up can be performed with mineral spirits. Leave the doors of your cabinet open until the silicone cures, and the vinegar like smell diminishes.
If your cooler includes display doors, run a bead of silicone around the entire inside perimeter of the frame after installation. If the gap is too large for silicone, stuff fiberglass insulation or backer rod to fill the joint instead. The same applies for glass viewing windows. Make sure they are well sealed prior to the window trim being secured.
All refrigeration or electrical lines penetrating the walls or ceiling need to be sealed. In addition, the inside of all electrical conduits must be sealed prior to entering the walk in cooler. This will help avoid future electrical problems by preventing moisture from collecting inside the conduit. Not all electricians are familiar with this possibility, so it never hurts to remind your contractor.
When your walk in cooler is in operation, if you see any water droplets running down the wall panels or water pooling onto the floor, it indicates warm air is entering the walk in cooler causing moisture and condensation to form. Determine the source of the air leak and seal properly.
If you needed to shim your walk in cooler during installation to compensate for an uneven floor, you may be faced with gaps larger than silicone caulk alone can seal.
Minimal expansion spray foam can be purchased at any hardware store or building center. It is sold under various brand names in convenient aerosol dispensing cans. You may need several cans depending on the size of your walk in cooler. The directions on the can will give you an idea of the product coverage.
First, install whatever type of finish trim you had planned for the outside of the walk in cooler. There are many possibilities (for example: vinyl cove base, tile, or wood molding). Having this in place will prevent the spray foam from expanding all over the outside flooring.
Now you can apply the foam underneath the wall panels from the inside of the walk in cooler. If you are unfamiliar working with this product, test spray a small amount into an empty box, and get a feel for how much it expands. This will give you an idea of how much to apply. Apply masking tape over the inside perimeter of the floor if you wish to protect the surface. After the product has finished expanding and has cured, it can be trimmed flush with the wall panel with a sharp knife. You will be left with an air tight seal, and can now finish it off with whatever base trim you choose.
Finding a good refrigeration contractor should be a high priority for your business. The initial installation of your walk in cooler is the key for long-term dependability. After that, routine service and maintenance will keep your walk in cooler running at maximum efficiency.
Best places to check…
1) Contact other businesses in your area that use refrigeration equipment. Examples would be floral wholesalers, other floral shops, restaurants, bakeries, drug stores, convenient stores, and gas station mini marts.
2) Larger cities have refrigeration wholesalers that can also help. Check the phone directory: “Refrigeration Equipment – Parts & Supplies”. These wholesalers only sell to other refrigeration contractors. You can ask them for 1 or 2 references that would be good for your type of business.
3) Call SRC. We keep an extensive list of contractors we have used over the years. We would be glad to check and see if we have a name in your area. Just give our service department a call during normal business hours.
Do I want a large or small company…
Each offers advantages that may be good for your business or for your area. What is more important is the individual service they can provide your business. At SRC we tend to work with smaller contractors – since they are owner-operators, they are generally more attentive and customer oriented.
It’s best to have office procedures in place so your staff immediately knows what to do if your walk in cooler does require service. Display the service company name and phone number in a spot that can be easily retrieved.
If within initial 90 day labor period (Factory installs only):
Your first call should be to us at our toll-free number: 1-800-521-0398 extension #260 and speak to one of our Service & Warranty professionals. Our service department will determine if a service call is required, and make the arrangements for you. If the failure is over the weekend or during a holiday and you can’t wait to contact us, you can call our installers directly. If the repair falls under our equipment warranty, you would be reimbursed for the straight-time service charges incurred. You would only be responsible for the premium overtime amounts. Make sure you call our service department to inform us of the problem when normal business hours resume.
Beyond the labor warranty period:
Since you will be responsible for the labor portion of the repair, you are free to call any service provider you would like (as well as the original installers). You can also call our service department at extension #260 and we would be happy to coordinate the call for you. If the technician determines that a part or component is defective and you are still within the one-year parts warranty, please have them contact our service department for replacement parts. Compressor motors are covered for a five-year period. Once again, have your technician contact us for instructions.
If you are unsure about your current warranty coverage:
Please call our service department. We will be happy to pull your job file and explain your existing coverage.
a) Visually inspect the evaporator coil. Are the fins iced over? If they are, then either shut the walk in cooler down completely, or make a temperature adjustment to the warmest position (this shortens the defrost time). Leave the unit alone until the evaporator coil is completely free of ice – this may take a while if the build-up was heavy. Never attempt to manually defrost or remove built-up ice by hand or with tools! Once clear, reset the temperature control to the correct range (38 to 40 degrees). Perform routine maintenance on your walk in cooler as necessary.
b) If the evaporator coil was not iced over, or if the icing occurs again, place a service call to determine and correct the cause of the problem.
c) If the problem is temporary, then it may be that the unit is in a defrost period. The defrost setting may be too long as well. The settings on the defrost timer should be reviewed and adjusted if necessary.
a) Air directly exiting the evaporator coil is approximately 10 degrees colder than the overall temperature in your walk in cooler. Products placed too close to the coil may be damaged. You could adjust your shelving positions or make a temperature adjustment to warm the overall display. It should be operating between 38 to 42 degrees Fahrenheit.
b) Perform routine maintenance. Ensure that the condenser coil is clean and make a slight temperature adjustment to warm your walk in cooler a few degrees. If there is no change, and the compressor is running continuously, there may be a problem with the control system. Place a service call to have your walk in cooler examined. [/toggle]
a) First, determine what the true temperature is in your walk in cooler. Immerse a floating aquarium thermometer in a vase of water somewhere inside. This will give an accurate reading as to the current set point. We recommend a setting somewhere between 38 to 42 degrees for optimum performance. Perform normal preventative maintenance prior to any temperature adjustment being performed. Adjustments should not be made to compensate for poorly maintained equipment.
b) Consideration should be given to these factors prior to lowering the temperature of your walk in cooler:
1. Each degree you lower the temperature will consume more energy, leading to higher bills.
2. Compressor run times will increase, decreasing the lifetime of the walk in cooler equipment. More heat and noise will be generated in your store.
3. The possibility of freezing product or iced coils will increase. Product loss wastes time and money – and is not covered by any equipment warranties.
Locating the control
a) If you determine that an adjustment is required, first find the temperature control. It may be mounted anywhere on walk in coolers, since it is supplied as a loose part for field installation. It will most typically be mounted within the walk in cooler. It will be a small unit, usually with two scales, adjustment screws and a copper sensing probe off the bottom. Electrical conduit will enter the bottom of the control.
b) All of our walk in coolers are equipped with pressure controls. These controls can appear very similar to temperature controls. They are usually mounted as part of the condensing unit. Trained technicians should only adjust these controls. The scales of pressure controls always refer to pressure (P.S.I., bar, etc.) rather then degrees of temperature.
Adjusting the Temperature Control
These controls are very sensitive, so make small adjustments, and let the temperature stabilize over a few hours. Don’t make any further adjustments before this.
There are two scales on the control. One scale measures the set point and the other scale shows the differential. The temperature swing or range of your walk in cooler is determined by the control set point, plus or minus the differential setting, depending on what model you have. It is usually not necessary to adjust the differential of the control.
There will be either a screw or a knob located directly above both scales. Turn the adjusting screw above the temperature scale to move the indicator towards the desired setting. Remember to move the indicator in only small increments at a time.
Sliding Glass Door models:
All walk in coolers must be level for sliding glass doors to seal properly. If the floor is not level, there may be gaps at the top or bottom of the door seal against the cabinet sidewall. There may also be gaps on the overlap seal from door to door. In addition, the doors will be unable to glide freely and bind instead. Leveling is not a service performed by delivery personnel. Walk in coolers are manufactured to rest on a sturdy, smooth, and level floor. The longer the cabinet, the more it may be affected.
What you can do:
If a smooth and level floor is not available, the walk in cooler will have to be shimmed to compensate for any floor irregularities. First, get a collection of wood squares of assorted thickness. You will also need a 4′ carpenter’s level and a tape measure.
1) Using the level, determine the slope of the floor. This will tell you which end is the highest. You will want to raise the rest of the walk in cooler until it is level with this end.
2) Next, hold your level flush against the face of the display against the highest end. This will tell you if the walk in cooler is leaning either forward or back.
3) Now you can start to insert shims under the cabinet supports to raise the walk in cooler into position. All four corners of the cabinet may need to be shimmed, as well as the center, both front and back. It will be helpful if two people level. One person can tip the display, while the second person can insert the shims.
4) You will be finished when your carpenter’s level can be placed anywhere against any of the horizontal or vertical surfaces and read perfectly plumb. A final test can then be made. Measure the door-frame assembly from the lower left corner to the upper right corner, and compare this measurement to the opposite corner-to-corner measurement. They should be exactly the same. If they are off, the walk in cooler is still not level. The bottom rail of the door-frame should also be perfectly straight with no sag or bow.
Leveling your walk in cooler will generally solve ninety percent of seal problems. In rare cases, individual adjustment to the doors themselves may be necessary. If your walk in cooler is now perfectly square, and one of your doors is now out of square in the frame, the following procedure can usually be performed.
1) Remove the door from the display by lifting it up and swinging the bottom of the door out free from the bottom rail.
2) Once the door is removed, you can shim the individual door rollers with washers to square the door within the frame.
Why it Happens:
The door frames of your walk in cooler are heated, and will normally stay moisture free, except in the harshest conditions. However, the walk in cooler door frame heaters will have no effect on the glass surface of the doors. Glass heat is not needed in a properly conditioned environment.
A refrigerated walk in cooler display will not only remove the heat from the air in the cabinet, but it will also attempt to pull heat from the walls of the display and walk in cooler display doors. The effects on our walk in cooler wall panels are very minimal – we use high-grade solid insulating materials in the construction. Even though our glass doors are the highest grade on the market, they cannot achieve the same degree of insulation as our walk in cooler walls.
Because of this refrigeration effect, the surface temperature of the walk in cooler glass doors is below the temperature inside your store. The colder you operate your display, the colder your doors will be. When the dew point of the indoor air rises to or above the surface temperature of your doors, moisture will begin to condense on the glass surface.
What does dew point refer to? At any given temperature, air can hold a certain quantity of water in the form of vapor. Warm air can hold much more water vapor then cold air. The amount of moisture in the air is expressed as a percentage, referred to as the relative humidity. Completely dry air would have 0%RH; totally saturated air (that cannot hold any more vapor) would have 100%RH.
As an example, if you had a room at 77 degrees with 56%RH, and simply lowered the temperature down to the dew point of 60 degrees without removing any moisture, the air would be totally saturated and dew would form on everything in the room. In the same example, leave the room temperature alone but set down a cold glass of ice water (itself well below the dew point of 60 degrees). The glass will eventually begin to sweat. The same thing will happen to a walk in cooler glass display door if the surface temperature drops to 60 degrees. So, what can be done to insure your walk in cooler glass doors stay as moisture free as possible?
What you can do?
a) Raising the temperature in the walk in cooler display case will also raise the surface temperature of the doors – possibly above the dew point.
b) If the air conditioning is on a nighttime setback, you may just need to clean off the walk in cooler doors first thing in the morning. As the air conditioning begins to operate, the problem may go away.
c) A colder setting on the air conditioning may help to pull more moisture from the air. This may lower the dew point below the door temperature.
d) Is the air conditioning thermostat actually sensing the air where the walk in cooler doors are located? If the thermostat is in a separate space or room, it may not be controlling the correct area.
e) Is there proper air supply and return distribution to appropriately condition the surroundings of your walk in cooler? Is the air conditioning system sized correctly for your building?
f) Are you are leaving any outside doors open (perhaps to take advantage of cooler weather outdoors)?
g) If all other avenues have been exhausted, and the problem is more than you can accept, the final option would be to replace your present doors with new heated glass doors to compensate for the ambient conditions. This is an expensive alternative, since there would be no credit given for your present doors.
Why it happens:
Our walk in coolers are structurally solid and fully gasketed. When properly installed they will form an air-tight unit. When any of the doors are closed suddenly, an air-hammer effect can be created inside the walk in cooler. There will be a positive pressure formed, and this pressure will be released at the point of least resistance. This point is generally the glass display doors, since they are held in place by only the magnetic strips within the gaskets. If the closing tension of the doors is too light, they may stay open, wasting energy.
What you can do:
This is a relatively easy problem to fix. The bottom hinge mechanism of the Anthony glass display doors is called a Torquemaster. The screw on the face of this mechanism allows you to easily adjust the closing force of the walk in cooler doors. Adjust the screw counter-clockwise to increase the tension. Do not adjust to the point of the door slamming – this can cause problems down the road with the doors.
There is also a screw on the edge of the mechanism. This screw allows you to adjust the square of the walk in cooler door within the frame.
If adjustment of the front screw has no effect, and the walk in cooler door swings loosely with no tension at all, then the torque rod may be broken within the door. This is an easy part to replace; call our service department to order the correct rod.
The heart of your walk in cooler is called the compressor. Its job is to compress the refrigerant that is the lifeblood of your walk in cooler and circulate it throughout the system. To accomplish this task, it has pistons, a crankshaft, and valve plates which operate at high rates of speed under pressure. It also has a separate fan motor to draw air through the condenser coil and across the compressor to help cool it. The condensing unit assembly works together to transfer the heat from the refrigerated space into the air wherever it is located. Unfortunately, all of this work will result in operating noise. Whether or not this noise will be objectionable is dependent on several factors:
a) Compressor location. If the condensing unit is located near to an area where you work, or a Sales counter, it may be more noticeable then if positioned back in your workspace.
b) The Shop layout. If your workspace has hard floors and ceilings, along with little background noise, the operational sound will be more apparent.
c) Personal sensitivity. Objectionable noise can be a very subjective thing. One person can find something unbearable, while the next person may never notice it. Any time a new noise enters an environment, it will be noticed. In time, of course, the noise of your walk in cooler will blend in with everything else you are accustomed to.
There is little that can be done to quiet a condensing unit once in place. It cannot be enclosed since it needs good airflow for efficient operation and lack of service expense and headaches. You can discuss moving the condensing unit to a more remote location within the store with a qualified refrigeration technician.
Any sudden change in the operating characteristics of your walk in cooler should be investigated. Any sudden changes may be indicative of service problems that could eventually lead to equipment failure. Normal operating characteristics are generally smooth in character. A steady hum and fan noise is normal. Mechanical knocks, pings, or clanking should not be present, and ought to be investigated. Luckily, the source causing these types of sounds should be correctable.
The source of water leaks in refrigerated cabinets can be from two sources:
1) The evaporator coil drainage system. When the compressor is operating, the copper tubing and fins in the housing of the coil are colder than the air inside your walk in cooler. As air is forced through the coil by the fan motor, moisture will collect on these fins. This moisture will form droplets and fall into the bottom pan (this is part of the evaporator coil assembly). From there it will be directed into a drain hose, and then into the bucket, floor drain, or electric hot pan.
a) If the drain line becomes plugged or obstructed at any point, water will back up and spill over the edges of the coil. If this is the problem, the walk in cooler will need to be shut down so you can clean out the obstruction.
b) If the coil assembly is not pitched back towards the drain hose, water can pool in the front of the drain pan, and be blown out or leak from screw holes. Drain pans generally have a pitch designed into them, but if the walk in cooler itself is not level or pitched forward, it can defeat this design feature. Recheck if the walk in cooler is leveled properly. If more drain pitch is required, the evaporator coil assembly can be shimmed to assist the water to flow back to the drain.
2) General air leaks. Whenever the cold air inside the walk in cooler meets the warmer outside air, moisture will form. Thus, if a floor or ceiling seam is not sealed properly, you may notice condensation or water droplets on your walls or floor. Your walk in cooler should be as level as possible – its doors will shut properly and its seams will be tighter. Use a 100% silicone caulk to seal any seams where you notice condensation.
When installed in a non air-conditioned warehouse, some walk in coolers will develop condensation on the outside of the walls or entry doors when the weather is warm and/or humid. Unfortunately, there is little that can be done to alleviate this situation. Sometimes, air movement in the form of a floor or ceiling fan can help reduce or eliminate the problem.
Normal maintenance on our walk in coolers is very easy. Well-maintained walk in coolers will experience very few mechanical failures, run efficiently, and last for a long time. It pays to tailor a regular cleaning program for your walk in cooler. You can determine how often your walk in cooler needs to be cleaned by the amount of use and how dusty the environment is.
a) Clean the condenser coil of your condensing unit. It will be safer for you to shut off the circuit breaker when you do this. A shop-vac works well for this purpose. Not only can you vacuum the surface, but also you can reverse the flow of air to blow deeply imbedded dust out from the center of the coil. Blow it out from both directions as best you can. You can then wipe off the housing and compressor with a damp rag. This simple maintenance is the single most important thing you can do for your walk in cooler.
b) Clean the interior of your walk in cooler. Avoid using harsh cleaners that can damage the painted finish over time. Mild soap and water will normally be sufficient, especially if done on a regular basis. Hard water stains can be cleaned with a mixture of white vinegar and water. Bleach and water can be used to clean mildew and mold. If you notice any of the caulk seals coming loose, pull it free. You can pick up small tubes of silicone at any hardware store to reseal the joint.
c) Check to make sure that the doors are sealing tightly to your walk in cooler. A visual inspection is all that is normally needed. You should be able to close the door on a dollar bill, and feel resistance when you pull the bill back out. If you need help adjusting your walk in cooler doors, click on this link
a) Clean your evaporator coil. This can be rather involved. Evaporator cleaning solutions are sold at refrigeration wholesalers by the bottle. They are specially formulated to clean the type of sediment that can collect over time in these evaporators. They are also very easy to use.
Directions will be on the bottle. Turn off the power to your walk in cooler. The drain tube should be disconnected, and the bottom pan of the evaporator coil can then be unscrewed and removed. Clean and disinfect the inside of the pan and follow the package directions to clean the copper tubing and fins of the coil itself. If you are uncomfortable with these procedures, you can always schedule a preventative maintenance service call with a refrigeration technician.
Clean your walk in cooler door gaskets with a soft cloth, soap, and water. Repair any small tears with a clear silicone adhesive. To keep them soft and pliable, wipe them down with a vinyl preservative, commonly sold at automotive supply stores. If a gasket should tear beyond repair, it pays to have it replaced, both in extra operating expense and less wear and tear on your walk in cooler’s compressor.