Industrial fridges have taken a serious leap forward in energy efficiency. Modern technological advancements have allowed for a multitude of new features and improvements for massive increases in energy efficiency. The following blog will discuss the top 5 features which modern industrial fridges have implemented which save you money.
1. Refrigeration Gas: R134a vs R290
In previous years, commercial refrigeration, have used refrigerant gases with a very high global warming potential (GWP), R-134a and R-404A. These gases are HFC refrigerants (HydroFluoroCarbons) and have recently come under great scrutiny due to their capabilities of damaging the Ozone layer. These refrigerants are not environmentally conscious and not efficient within the commercial environment.
In some modern industrial refrigerators, the toxic HFC refrigerants are being replaced by R-290 refrigerant - a more sustainable, energy-efficient and environmentally friendly gas. The R-290 refrigeration gas has zero ozone depletion potential (ODP) and low global warming potential (GWP) compared to the older refrigerants.
But how does it save you money?
The hydrocarbons, such as R-290, have excellent thermodynamic properties making them more efficient; this enables them to perform better than previous refrigerants. The R-290 gas is also one of the most economical refrigerants available on the market and provides the same performance with less load; the R-290 charge is around 40% of the charge that would be used in other equipment whilst obtaining the same cooling performance.
The increased efficiency is due to the development of compressors and other components which are conducive to this. The gas also has high compatibility with direct components and materials.
2. LED Lights that Consume Less Energy
LED lights are fast replacing the old traditional incandescent bulbs. LED’s are the most energy-efficient lighting solution currently available on the market
The white clear light emitted by LED lights not only provides better visibility of your products = better-displayed products positively impact retail sales.
LED lights last up to six times longer than traditional ones, saving you replacement costs over the long term.
LED lights produce significantly less heat compared to old filament bulbs, and as a result, reducing energy consumption by between 80% and 90% when compared to a traditional bulb used in older fridges.
Though more expensive to purchase initially, their energy-efficient properties will help you save more in the long term. Lights are overlooked features in refrigeration units, however, with careful consideration, the right lights could save you a great deal of money.
3. Decreased Energy Consumption with CFC-free Polyurethane Insulation
Polyurethane foam is a component in refrigeration units that assists in keeping the external heat from entering the inside, it keeps the cold temperature in. It plays a critical role in the refrigeration unit, without polyurethane insulation, the food inside your fridge would quickly rot away. It is estimated 50% of the world's food would rot without insulated refrigeration.
Here's how Polyutherane insulation saves you money:
It reduces food waste and extends the life of perishable goods thanks to its low thermal conductivity, in other words, it doesn't transfer heat from one surface to another making it the perfect solution for keeping the external heat from your perishable foods inside your fridge or freezer.
It retains the cold temperature inside the refrigeration unit thereby reducing the amount of energy output of your fridge required to keep your food or drinks cold
With refrigerators and freezers consuming the largest amount of electricity costs in commercial (ave. 40%) and household premises(30%), energy-efficient refrigerators will save you a lot of money.
4. Refrigeration & Defrosting systems
Modern refrigeration systems have advanced exponentially within recent years, the improvement of said systems have allowed organisations to reduce overhead costs experienced with fridges and freezers.
Modern refrigeration systems such as the ventilated condensation systems allow for efficient temperature control which improves unit performance. The added control of the temperature allows for better cooling performance and lets you stay in control of how long your consumables last.
Hot gas defrost vs electric defrosting
Traditional fridges which operate close to 0° or lower are susceptible to ice collecting on their unit coolers coil. The counter to this in older fridges was the electronic defrosting method which uses electric heaters next to the coil to heat and melt the ice which has collected there. The alternative model is the hot gas defrost which is present in modern refrigerators; this uses the superheated vapour from the compressor discharge to warm the coil and melts the ice.
The hot gas defrost used in modern fridges is much more efficient as the heat source flows through the all coil circuit allowing for effective heat exchange with formed ice. The hot gas defrost method also requires far less energy than the electric defrost method thus saving you money over time.
5. Larger Vents for Air circulation
Refrigerators require good ventilation to facilitate the cooling process. Poor or clogged ventilation systems can damage the cooling system of refrigeration units, a damaged or unwell condensation can result in droplets landing on the exposed products inside the refrigeration unit. Poor ventilation can also cause the compressor to overwork and overheat. Advanced industrial refrigerators manufacturers have taken a structural turn to implement larger vents to allow for increased air exchange. This structural change allows for an increase in cooling performance and enables you to keep their food fresh for longer.
How does a ventilated condensation system save you money?
Ventilated system removes condensation that could spoil or damage your food, keeps your food fresh for longer.
Helps your cooling system and compressor from overworking and overheating which consumes significant energy.
It prolongs the lifespan of your refrigeration unit through increase air exchange that allows your compressor to work at optimal levels.
For restaurants, hotels, supermarkets and other food services businesses, being able to keep food fresh for longer periods provides many benefits including infrequent purchases, buying less food, increased shelf life and providing fresh food for your customers. These benefits will save you money and increase your efficiency within the workplace.
So, are modern fridges and freezers worth it?
The older less advanced fridges were responsible for keeping items cool, fresh and extending the shelf life. Modern fridges do the same whilst minimising the overhead costs, inefficiencies and costs associated with the daily operation of the fridge. Deciding which commercial fridge to go with can be a challenging decision, however, ensuring that your refrigeration solution decreases as much of your overhead costs as possible will allow you to maximise your efficiency within your establishment. The use of modern fridges within your business will not only enable you to lower your costs but also improve the quality of your cooling. An excellent example of a modern refrigeration brand that incorporates these new astounding features is Infrico, a refrigeration brand from Spain. Infrico's energy efficiency & low footprint makes it ideal for commercial establishments as the refrigerators offer these features whilst still being able to operate at capacity.
Feel free to browse the Infrico refrigeration range available.