Fast food restaurants might not install fancy frills, but they do enforce the same food-safe regulations as any elegant eatery. Behind the swinging kitchen doors, the catering equipment is just as clean and just as functional, so the gear inside a diner is far from that, far from junk. Equipped with the latest and greatest refrigeration systems, fast food restaurants keep their burgers safely frozen.

Buying In the Cold Storage Equipment

Short-order cooks are busy frying up the burger meat. Fryers are nearby, sizzling with onion rings. The aromas in the kitchen are making the customers hungry, so an employee is heading back to pull out another load of frozen meat. This is service-line food processing, so a commercially equipped walk-in freezer is required. It sits shining behind a kitchen partition. Epoxy-coated wire shelves are loaded up inside the enclosure. The shelves adjust, one notch at a time, so that burger meat and larger slabs of beef or chicken slot tidily into their allocated storage zones. What’s on the opposite wall? Bins of frozen potatoes occupy the shelves. They’re peeled and ready to be pressed through a french fry cutting machine.

Fast Food Freezer Installations

Think about the catering personnel and equipment in a fast food establishment. They’re relying on customer turnover, on drive-through windows and short-order cooking times. A burger gets flipped, a deep fryer cooks breaded chicken, and french fries pile high on greaseproof paper. Speed dominates service-line cooking. Unsurprisingly, the food storage area behind the kitchen operates at a different pace. Installed by professionals, by technicians who’re intimately familiar with the service line food storage and processing chain, the sealed modular components occupy a predetermined space. Thermal barriers block the vestibule area from greasy smoke and spitting fryer oil. Out front, upright refrigerators are located far away from the fryers and open oven ranges, but the vestibule-enclosed walk-ins stay cool, even when they’re a few metres away from the line.

Are there buffers that can be installed when a fast food kitchen is too close to a freezer? After all, as soon as the food leaves a supply truck, a reefer of some kind, it’s the sole responsibility of the restaurant manager. Fortunately, there are codes that make sure restaurant bosses take their responsibilities seriously. They ensure the installation of PVC freezer curtains, a branded refrigeration unit, spring-loaded vinyl doors, and more. With higher volume turnovers, fast food installers focus on freezer systems that are designed to properly cool and store perishable items so that they safely reach a customer’s awaiting tray, hot and fresh.

Hygiene, that’s the very first word and thought that comes to mind when dismantling a coolroom. Procedures have to be discussed and managed, then the operation begins. Are the old insulation panels recyclable? For newer materials, that’s an option. However, older materials, including fibreglass, are not normally recyclable. They absorb moisture. Wet and falling apart, the glassy insulation needs to be disposed of properly.

Obey Proper Disposal Procedures

The first matter of concern is a properly enforced disposal procedure. Older insulation panels need to be scrapped according to all national and international guidelines. For fibreglass, incidentally, it’s okay to just scrap the stuff in sealed bin bags. For refrigerants, the solution is significantly different. We can’t allow this stuff to be vented. The gas can’t be allowed to fade into the atmosphere. Remember, refrigerants, especially the older chemical CFCs (Chlorofluorocarbons), are environmentally volatile. They hurt our planet. Safe chemical recovery procedures, as enforced by word of law, must be implemented when refrigerant-loaded coolroom equipment is dismantled.

The Product Dismantling Guidelines

Turning off the gear for the last time, it’s put into defrost mode. For a coolroom that keeps its contents at or about 0°C, this stage may not be required. For enclosures that have icy build-up, that ice melting stage is unavoidable. Drain the meltwater and dry the room. Get the cabinetry and shelves out of the coolroom. Take the powered refrigeration unit out, but only do so after it has been mechanically and electrically isolated. In split systems, carry out a similar action; Isolate the condenser and evaporator coils. To greatly simplify the job, label the parts. Label the vent sections, walls, ceiling panels, and all supplementary components.

The Modular Advantage

Older constructs can’t come out unless they’re forcibly removed by a demolitions company. Unfortunately, the single-piece design won’t budge until a construction mallet and a handful of light construction workers get on-site. For modern units, the refrigeration engineers can turn to the aforementioned item labelling approach. The walls and open surfaces, insulation panels and cooling equipment all assembled modularly, so they dismantle easily. And, unlike the single-piece design, these parts are reusable. Approached by a demolition-minded construction team, those panels face quick and fast execution, which is why the original installation personnel should be on-site to manage the entire project.

That’s right, demolition experts can dispose of refrigerants, and they can take charge of most recycling duties. For the best option, however, a walk-in refrigeration expert should be on-hand. The professionals know just how to remove the refrigerant. They also know which module components can be saved or trashed, and that’s a beyond convenient preference.

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