Top tips to lengthen the life of your commercial kitchen equipment
With rising costs placing new pressures on the hospitality industry, the last thing you want to think about is having to replace your vital commercial kitchen equipment.
Although purchasing from new is sometimes the only option, there are things that you can do to keep your appliances working at their best for longer.
We spoke to Carl Twaites, Field Service Manager at TWO Services, for advice that will help venues and caterers avoid expensive repairs and breakdowns and get the most from their investments.
Only invest in the best
“You really do get what you pay for”, says Twaites. “New machines will have a much better life expectancy from the manufacturer, not to mention longer warranties, which come in handy later on. If you buy second hand, you should expect their components to start to wear and/or fail sooner, meaning you’ll have to fork out for an engineer to come and deal with every breakdown (unless you’re on a maintenance package, of course).
“In addition, newer equipment is much more eco-efficient than older items – and we know this is something that’s becoming more important to our customers as they seek to lower their energy bills and do their bit for the planet at the same time.”
Buy what you need – nothing more, nothing less
“You might have had your eye on an appliance for a while, either because someone’s recommended it to you, or you just like the look of it. But could there be a better and more cost-effective alternative out there? At TWO, it’s our job to look at your needs, your budget, and how much space you have in your kitchen to determine which equipment will be the best option.
“For example, if you are running an office canteen that’s only serving around 150 people per day, your requirements are very different to a larger premises that’s catering for thousands of covers on every shift. The key here is not to go for image over practicality – and not overspend on unnecessarily large or feature-packed equipment, if you don’t actually need it.
“Our engineers are completely independent and not tied to any manufacturer, so we really can make suggestions based wholly on your requirements.
“We can even help you transition to a gas setup if your consumer board is full and your network is constantly being overloaded. Our team have the relevant qualifications to modify gas pipework and run for new gas equipment. Alternatively, we can convert your power network to electric only.
“It’s all about looking at what’s going to work best for your business in the long term and making smart, sustainable changes when you need to.”
Budget for new appliances ahead of time
This is a point that Carl is particularly passionate about, as he comes across so many customers who are not in a financial position to invest in new equipment, despite knowing that their existing appliances are likely to come to their end of life soon.
“You should leave scope in your budget for replacing your dishwashers, ovens, refrigerators, and other kitchen equipment in advance. This will help you avoid any unexpected costs and make forecasting much easier,” he says.
“If you know your oven is likely to last for an average of 7 years, you’ll need to be prepared to get a new one in around 7 years’ time. However, you’ll need to bear in mind that this timescale could be shortened further if that oven is subjected to particularly heavy use or isn’t looked after or maintained correctly.”
“When you invest in a maintenance package with TWO Services, part of our role is to review your equipment on a regular basis and monitor its output and condition. We will provide a condition report after every service, so you’ll be kept informed of any problems or deteriorations in performance that might justify purchasing something from new.”
Remember to look after your equipment properly from day one
“Make sure your teams know how to keep your appliances clean and free from any obstructions. This could be as simple as cleaning out the dirt and fat trays in your dishwashers regularly, running the right water treatments, or using water softener to prevent damaging limescale from building up in your equipment’s components.
“Again, my team here at TWO can advise on the things you and your team need to do on a regular basis. Every small step you take towards maintaining your equipment now could save you time, money, and a great deal of stress further down the line.”
Run a good planned preventative maintenance schedule
TWO Services provides comprehensive preventative maintenance package options for commercial kitchens.
Our services include:
- Standard 6- or 12-month inspections.
- A ‘labour comprehensive’ contract, covering labour costs for reactive callouts.
- An ‘out of hours’ option to help you avoid downtime.
You can rely on us to look after all your equipment onsite, so you can concentrate on building and running a successful kitchen. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website, www.two-services.com.