Any commercial kitchen or similar enterprise needs refrigerators to keep food and other perishables fresh and available for use. A failure of these refrigerators can cause severe disruption to the business, cost significant amounts of money and take a long time to recover from. Often the problems are indicated by pools of water forming around the refrigerator or water trickling out and these have easily identifiable causes.

1. Blocked Drains

Commercial refrigerators have an automatic defrost function so that ice that builds up on the evaporator coils is melted. The resulting water flows into a tray located below the refrigerator unit.

Sometimes a build-up of food particles or ice can block the drain hose and cause the water to leak out. If so, remove the valve at the end of the pipe, flush with warm water to melt the ice or remove other debris then re-install. You can also use a pipe cleaner or compressed air to clear the debris. This is the most common cause of water leaks and should be the first thing you check. Clearing the hose frequently can prevent problems.

2. Misaligned Drain Pan

The drain pan collects excess water and will be under the refrigerator or on the compressor. If the refrigerator is not level, water may spill out from the pan and the refrigerator needs to be levelled to correct this. If already level, check the pan for an ice build up that may indicate a defective heater or look for signs of damage that may require a replacement. In these cases, you may need professional help to fix the problem. Alternatively, there may be accumulated debris in the pan that is causing a blockage and can be easily cleaned out.

3. Damaged Water Line

If the refrigerator has a built-in ice maker or water dispenser, check the pipe that connects to the mains water supply. Tighten it if it’s loose or, if it’s damaged, turn off the water supply and then replace the pipe. The hose may be a plastic pipe that becomes brittle and cracks, or a copper pipe that has kinked when the refrigerator has been moved. These are both likely to require replacement rather than repair.

4. Damaged Seal

The seal around the refrigerator can become damaged or worn so that warm air can leak into the unit and cold air is lost. This can cause the temperature to rise, resulting in excess condensation and water leaking out. In this case, the seal needs to be replaced.

Avoiding Leaks and other Problems

At Batchelor Air Conditioning and Refrigeration company, we have wide experience in designing, supplying, installing and maintaining commercial refrigeration and freezer systems. We can provide all the information you need to use them properly and to gain the most benefit from them.

By supplying the best quality commercial refrigerators and installing them correctly, we’ll ensure that any future problems are minimised. We can also service your equipment regularly so that potential problems are identified and resolved, and the refrigerator keeps working efficiently with no leaks or other issues. That way, you’ll avoid disruptions and everything stays fresh.

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