In commercial enterprises, the performance and efficiency of the refrigeration system play a crucial role in smooth operations. However, the sudden failures of these systems can prove disruptive, which may further lead to financial losses and customer dissatisfaction. Therefore, it becomes crucial to notice the signs promptly to avoid problems. 

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to take when your commercial refrigeration system fails unexpectedly.

Steps To Take When Your Commercial Refrigeration System Fails 

1. Assess the Situation

Upon discovering a refrigeration system failure, begin by assessing the situation. Check for visible issues such as leaks, unusual noises, or temperature irregularities. Getting to the root cause of the immediate problem will help you communicate with the commercial refrigeration repair professionals effectively, as it will help them solve the problem with a better understanding of the issue.

2. Emergency Shutdown Procedures

If the situation warrants it, initiate emergency shutdown procedures. This may involve turning off the power to the refrigeration system to prevent further damage. To know what to do and what not to do, refer to your system’s manual for guidance on proper shutdown protocols.

3. Contact Emergency Repair Services

Time is of the essence during a refrigeration system failure. Therefore, you must immediately contact emergency repair services that have a proven track record in commercial refrigeration. Provide detailed information about the issue to expedite the response and ensure the technicians arrive prepared.

4. Preserve Perishables

If your commercial refrigeration system houses perishable goods, take steps to preserve them. Transfer sensitive items to alternative storage if available or use ice packs to maintain temperatures. Doing this will help you prevent financial losses.

5. Document the Issue

Document the details of the system failure. Take pictures, if possible, and note any unusual circumstances leading up to the failure. Keep clear communication with the repair professionals, but be accurate. These documents prove to be a valuable asset.

6. Communicate with Stakeholders

Keep stakeholders informed about the situation. Whether it’s employees, clients, or management, transparent communication helps manage expectations and allows for collaborative efforts in mitigating the impact of the refrigeration system failure.

7. Temporary Cooling Solutions

Refrigeration system emergencies can happen anytime, which is why it is important to have a backup. So, while waiting for professional assistance, explore temporary cooling solutions. This might include renting portable refrigeration units or utilising available cold storage space. Temporary measures can prevent further spoilage of perishable goods.

8. Post-Repair Evaluation

Once the emergency repair is complete, conduct a post-repair evaluation. Ensure that the system is functioning correctly, and inquire about preventive measures to avoid similar issues in the future. This proactive approach can contribute to the long-term reliability of your commercial refrigeration system.


Refrigeration system failures can occur at any time, which is why having a plan in hand is essential to mitigate the associated issues. By following the steps listed above, you can respond effectively to a system failure, minimise losses, and ensure the swift restoration of your commercial refrigeration operations. Also, opt for a reputed and experienced refrigeration system service to get your system running at optimum efficiency.

If you’re in the food business or any industry that relies on commercial refrigeration, you must already know that keeping your perishables at the perfect temperature is paramount. However, even the most reliable cool room refrigeration systems can encounter issues over time, jeopardising the freshness and safety of your inventory. If you want to tackle these issues it is important to notice the signs that might help you in identifying the issues before they turn problematic. 

In this blog, we have highlighted the important signs that your trusty refrigeration system might be indicating out for some professional repair.

Signs To Hire Professional Commercial Refrigeration Repair

1. Rising Temperatures and Inconsistent Cooling

The first red flag is when your refrigerator is unable to maintain a consistent temperature. For example, if you notice a gradual increase in temperature or inconsistent cooling throughout the unit, it’s time to pay attention. Also, warm spots in the fridge or freezer can lead to food spoilage and waste.

2. Unusual Noises and Vibrations

Commercial refrigeration systems aren’t known for being whisper-quiet, but they shouldn’t sound like a freight train either. If you’re hearing unusual noises like banging, rattling, or grinding, or if the unit is vibrating excessively, it’s a problem indicator. These noises can indicate loose or worn-out components that need attention.

3. Frost Build-Up or Ice Formation

While some frost in the freezer is normal, excessive ice build-up on the evaporator coils or other areas of the unit is cause for concern. This further leads to reduced system efficiency and makes it work harder and consume more energy. What’s more problematic is ice build-up can obstruct airflow and lead to temperature fluctuations.

4. Leaks and Puddles

If you find puddles of water or refrigerant around your refrigeration unit, it’s a clear indicator of a problem. The cause that leads to puddles of water or refrigerant can originate from various sources, such as damaged gaskets, clogged drain lines, or refrigerant leaks. Therefore, to preserve safety and prevent environmental hazards, it is important to give these leaks attention.

5. Spoiled or Wasted Inventory

One of the costliest signs of refrigeration trouble is spoiled or wasted inventory. If you’ve noticed an increase in food spoilage or have had to toss out more items than usual, it’s time to investigate. An inefficient refrigeration system can lead to temperature fluctuations that harm perishable goods.

6. Excessive Energy Bills

Another indicator of a refrigeration system problem is a sudden spike in your energy bills. When the system is struggling to maintain an appropriate temperature, it works harder and ultimately consumes more energy. Therefore, it is important to monitor your energy bills to spot the rise in energy bills.

7. Short Cycling

Short cycling is when the refrigeration system turns on and off frequently, often in quick succession. This can indicate issues with the thermostat, temperature sensors, or other components. This might further lead to wear and tear on the system and inconsistent temperatures.

8. Foul Odors

If your refrigeration unit is emitting unpleasant odours, it’s a clear sign that something isn’t right. The main culprits behind foul odours are mould growth, food spills, or even refrigerant leaks. These odours can affect the quality and taste of your stored items.

9. Old Age and Outdated Equipment

Like every other electrical appliance, refrigeration systems have a finite lifespan. If your system is nearing the end of its expected life, it’s more susceptible to breakdowns and inefficiencies. Therefore, you must invest in a new system or timely repairs that can save you from unexpected downtime and losses.

10. Inadequate Maintenance

Proper maintenance is the backbone of a healthy refrigeration system. If your system hasn’t received regular check-ups and servicing, it’s more likely to develop issues. Neglecting maintenance can lead to decreased efficiency and costly repairs down the line.

Why Professional Repairs Matter

When you encounter any of these signs, the best course of action is to enlist the services of professional commercial refrigeration repair experts. Here’s why it matters:

Expertise: Qualified technicians have the knowledge and experience to diagnose and address issues accurately, which might not be possible the DIY way.

Efficiency: Professional repairs can restore your system’s efficiency, reducing energy consumption and operational costs.

Food Safety: Timely repairs ensure that food is stored at safe temperatures, minimising the risk of contamination and spoilage.

Longevity: Proper repairs can extend the lifespan of your refrigeration system, postponing the need for costly replacements.

Peace of Mind: Knowing that your system is in top shape provides peace of mind and allows you to focus on your business.

Preventive Maintenance: The Key to Reliability

While recognising the warning signs of trouble is undoubtedly crucial, your most reliable ally in the realm of commercial refrigeration is none other than preventive maintenance. Therefore, consistently scheduled check-ups and servicing serve as a proactive shield against potential issues. Think of it as an investment, not just in the durability of your glycol refrigeration system, but also in its unwavering efficiency and performance.


In conclusion, recognising and addressing the ten signs mentioned is essential for the longevity and efficiency of your commercial refrigeration system. Prompt action and professional repair when needed can safeguard your inventory, maintain product quality, and prevent costly disruptions to your operations. 

Remember, regular preventive maintenance is key to staying ahead of potential issues and ensuring your system’s optimal performance. By heeding these signs and investing in maintenance, you’ll keep your refrigeration running smoothly, even in demanding environments.