Refrigeration Best Practices for Commercial Refrigeration Systems
Grocery stores consume far more energy than other businesses of comparable square-footage and 58% of the electricity is consumed by refrigeration. EPA estimates that every year a typical grocery store may lose as much as 25% of the refrigerant in their system due to leaks. These refrigerants are usually potent greenhouse gases, and as they are phased out to reduce global warming, they become more expensive or even impossible to refill. Taking simple steps to improve energy efficiency and prevent refrigerant leaks will save store owner/operators money and reduce their environmental impact. These steps also increase the reliability and security of the refrigeration system, preventing failure that can result in loss of product and major business disruption.
This comprehensive guide to general refrigeration system operation and maintenance addresses common equipment issues and provides grocery store owners advice on operating their refrigeration system as efficiently as possible, focusing on practices with little or no capital cost. It offers instructions that grocery store staff can follow for basic maintenance and inspections, and allows owner/operators to recognize and request service sooner for issues that require technician servicing. A monthly checklist and data log for refrigerant tracking is also provided. Implementing these practices will help grocery store owner/operators to improve their system efficiency for the cost of a small amount of time each month.
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This guide was created in summer 2021 by Minnesota Technical Assistance Program (MnTAP) intern Julian Kern Steffen in association with South-Town Refrigeration and Mechanical. South-Town Refrigeration and Mechanical engineers, installs, and services commercial and industrial refrigeration, operating throughout Minnesota since 1954. In addition to refrigeration, South-Town designs heating, cooling, building automation, custom ductwork and energy saving solutions for their clients.