You may think a little ice buildup at first is normal or no big deal inside refrigeration or walk-in coolers/freezers – it’s supposed to be cold in there, right? But, this is usually the first sign of problems such as bad gaskets, faulty doors, or other issues that can ultimately lead to more damage … aka more money out of your pocket.
Not only is ice a sign of potetnially bigger refrigeration issues to come, it is likely causing your energy bills to rise as the system struggles to keep temperatures properly regulated. Another costly side effect is when the ice and improper temperatures cause freezer burn which ruins your product and renders it unusable.
How does ice/frost form?
Ice crystals are created in refrigeration units when warm, moist air meets cold, dry air to form vapors that turn into solid ice. The ice will then accumulate on walls, ceilings, floors of walk-in units and even within the refrigeration system itself.
What causes frost/ice buildup?
(1) Refrigerator doors that do not seal properly due to faulty hinges, bad or old gaskets, etc.
(2) Refrigerator doors that are left open for extended periods.
(3) Improper defrost settings
On top of the above list of potential existing issues that may be causing the ice buildup, the ice buildup itself can lead to additional damage. The melting and freezing of ice can cause water to enter the interior components of your refrigerator or freezer and ruin them. Ice blockages within the evaporator can prevent the evaporator fan from rotating and damage the fan blades.
How to prevent ice buildup:
The best way to prevent ice buildup and the subsequent damage that it can cause is with regular maintenance inspections and cleanings. Prevenative maintenance + deep cleanings are recommended at least 2-3 times per year for optimal performance. Professional refrigeration technicians are trained to inspect for these types of issues and fix them early-on and hopefully avoid further complications.
What’s included in refrigeration preventative maintenance?
(1) General Equipment Cleaning
(2) Temperature & Defrost Frequency Settings Check
(3) Seal Inspection – Gaskets / Hinges / Latches
(4) Evaporator & Condenser Coil Cleaning
(5) Fan Blades Cleaning
(6) Refrigerant Level Inspection
(7) Compressor & Motor Operation Check
(8) Inspect Parts for Wear & Tear
(9) Drain Line Cleaning
(10) Electrical Connection Check
(11) Thermometer Testing & Recalibration (when necessary)
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