Stocked Fridge in Supermarket

What are the Different Types of Commercial Refrigerators?

Commercial refrigerators are essential for various industries, whether your business deals with food and beverages, plants, medicine, or more. These refrigerators play a crucial role in preserving perishable goods, ensuring safety, and maintaining product quality. With a variety of commercial refrigerators available, it's important to understand their differences, advantages, disadvantages, and suitability for specific industries. But, what are the different types of commercial refrigerators, and what is best for my company?

Types of Commercial Refrigerators

Reach-In Refrigerators

Reach-in refrigerators are upright units designed for easy access to stored items. They usually come with one, two, or three doors, which can be solid or glass, and feature multiple shelves for organizing products.

Typical Uses:

These refrigerators are ideal for kitchens in restaurants, cafes, and convenience stores where quick and frequent access to ingredients or products is necessary. They are commonly used for storing perishable foods like dairy, produce, and prepared dishes.

Key Features:

  • Vertical structure with front-opening doors
  • Adjustable shelves for customizable storage
  • Available in various sizes and configurations
  • Solid or glass door options

Advantages:

  • Easy access to products
  • Ideal for smaller spaces
  • Available in single, double, and triple-door configurations

Disadvantages:

  • Limited storage capacity
  • Not suitable for high-volume storage needs

Best For:

  • Restaurants, cafes, and convenience stores where quick access to ingredients is essential.

Walk-In Refrigerators

Walk-in refrigerators are large, enclosed spaces that can be customized in size and layout to fit the needs of the business. They provide ample storage space and can accommodate large quantities of products.

Typical Uses:

These refrigerators are essential for large-scale food service operations such as restaurants, hotels, grocery stores, and warehouses that need to store bulk quantities of perishable goods.

Key Features:

  • Large, customizable enclosed space
  • Heavy-duty insulation for maintaining temperature
  • Can be fitted with shelving, racks, or storage bins
  • Often equipped with strong, lockable doors

Advantages:

  • Large storage capacity
  • Customizable size and layout
  • Suitable for bulk storage

Disadvantages:

  • High initial cost
  • Requires significant space and installation

Best For:

  • Large-scale food service operations, grocery stores, and warehouses that need to store large quantities of perishable goods.

Undercounter Refrigerators

Undercounter refrigerators are compact units designed to fit under countertops or workstations. They are typically used for keeping frequently needed items within easy reach.

Typical Uses:

These refrigerators are perfect for bars, coffee shops, and small kitchens where space is limited and easy access to chilled items like beverages, garnishes, and small food items is required.

Key Features:

  • Compact design to fit under counters
  • Single or double-door options
  • Various shelf configurations
  • Energy-efficient models available

Advantages:

  • Space-saving design
  • Convenient placement under counters or workstations
  • Ideal for limited-space environments

Disadvantages:

  • Limited storage capacity
  • Not suitable for bulk storage needs

Best For:

  • Bars, coffee shops, and small kitchens where space is at a premium and easy access to items is necessary.

Display Refrigerators

Display refrigerators are designed to showcase products to customers. They often have glass doors or open fronts to enhance product visibility and encourage impulse buys.

Typical Uses:

Commonly found in retail environments like supermarkets, delis, bakeries, and convenience stores, these refrigerators are used to display items such as beverages, desserts, prepared foods, and packaged goods.

Key Features:

  • Glass doors or open-air fronts for visibility
  • Shelving designed to maximize display space
  • Interior lighting to highlight products
  • Temperature controls to ensure product freshness

Advantages:

  • Attractive design for product display
  • Enhances product visibility and marketing
  • Available in various styles (glass door, open-air)

Disadvantages:

  • Higher energy consumption due to frequent opening
  • Often less energy-efficient than other types

Best For:

  • Retail settings such as supermarkets, delis, and bakeries where displaying products to customers is crucial.

Blast Chillers

Blast chillers are specialized units designed to rapidly bring down the temperature of hot food items to safe levels, preventing bacterial growth and preserving food quality.

Typical Uses:

These units are vital for catering companies, restaurants, and food processing plants where cooked foods need to be cooled rapidly to ensure safety and maintain texture and flavor.

Key Features:

  • Powerful cooling systems for rapid temperature reduction
  • Digital controls for precise temperature settings
  • Stainless steel construction for durability and hygiene
  • Capacity to chill large quantities quickly

Advantages:

  • Rapidly cools hot food items to safe temperatures
  • Reduces bacterial growth
  • Preserves food texture and quality

Disadvantages:

  • Expensive compared to conventional refrigerators
  • Requires significant power consumption

Best For:

  • Catering companies, restaurants, and food processing plants where rapid cooling of cooked food is essential for safety and quality.

Beverage Coolers

Beverage coolers are optimized for storing drinks. They feature adjustable shelving to accommodate different bottle or can sizes and often have glass doors for easy viewing.

Typical Uses:

Ideal for bars, cafes, restaurants, and convenience stores, these coolers keep beverages like sodas, beers, and juices at the perfect serving temperature and readily accessible for customers or staff.

Key Features:

  • Designed specifically for beverage storage
  • Adjustable shelves to fit various bottle and can sizes
  • Glass doors for visibility
  • Temperature settings tailored for drinks

Advantages:

  • Optimized for storing drinks
  • Adjustable shelving for different bottle sizes
  • Glass doors for easy viewing

Disadvantages:

  • Limited to beverage storage
  • May not maintain the same temperature range as standard refrigerators

Best For:

  • Bars, cafes, and convenience stores where chilled beverage storage is a primary need.

Specialty Medical Refrigerators

Specialty medical refrigerators are designed to meet the stringent temperature and storage requirements necessary for preserving sensitive medical supplies, including vaccines, medications, blood, and other biological samples. These units ensure that medical products remain safe and effective by maintaining precise and consistent temperatures.

Typical Uses:

These refrigerators are essential in healthcare settings such as hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, research laboratories, and blood banks. They are used to store critical items like vaccines, pharmaceuticals, blood products, tissue samples, and reagents, ensuring their viability and safety for patient use.

Key Features:

  • Precise temperature control and monitoring
  • Digital displays and alarms for temperature fluctuations
  • Lockable doors for security and compliance with regulations
  • Often include backup power systems
  • Adjustable shelving and storage bins for various medical supplies
  • Compliance with health and safety standards like CDC and WHO guidelines

Advantages:

  • Temperature Precision
  • Lockable doors and advanced monitoring systems
  • Meet stringent health and safety standards
  • Often equipped with backup power systems

Disadvantages:

  • High Cost
  • Requires regular maintenance
  • Take up significant space in a healthcare facility

Best For:

  • Hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, research laboratories, and blood banks.

Benefits of Rentable Cold Storage

Sometimes, your refrigerator breaks or your current one doesn’t provide enough storage or advantages. Luckily, there are rentable cold storage options to help you on short—and long-term bases. Rentable cold storage solutions provide flexibility and efficiency for businesses that may not require a permanent refrigeration system.

Rentable Cold Storage from Cool It! is:

  • Cost-Effective
  • Scalable
  • Space-saving
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Easy Maintenance and Repairs

Meet Your Rental Refrigeration Needs with Cool It!

At Cool It!, we have a wide collection of portable refrigerators and freezers available to rent for various uses and different industries. We can help you pick the right one and we make the process as easy as possible for you.

Call us at (877) 960-1377 to learn more about our services.