Did you know eight out of ten restaurant owners began their career in entry-level jobs? If you want to learn how to shop for commercial kitchen equipment, we can help.
In this guide, we’ll go over what to consider when shopping for commercial kitchen equipment.
Want to learn more? Keep reading.
1. What’s Your Budget?
Before you begin shopping for your kitchen equipment, you should determine your budget. What can you afford to spend? If you don’t set up a budget, you could overspend on certain areas.
You might not have enough money left over for other business necessities. Set up a budget from the beginning. You can use the money for the equipment. If you have money left over, you can put it toward something else.
Are there some pieces you could buy second-hand? Shop around and compare prices. Shop online & save.
2. Read Reviews
When shopping for equipment, you should spend time reading reviews. You want to make sure you’re buying a quality piece of equipment that other customers love.
Read the three-star reviews. This way, you’ll understand what customers liked and disliked.
3. Make Sure You Buy What You Need
It would help if you looked at planning out your menu before you buy any equipment. Knowing your menu will help you determine the necessary commercial kitchen equipment.
You won’t end up overspending on things you don’t need. Don’t hold back on buying specialty equipment that will end up saving time on labor. You should invest in pieces that will help you succeed.
Figure out how much time you’ll need from each piece of equipment. Find out the appropriate size for your kitchen.
What could potentially slow down your service? If you buy too large, you could overspend on the energy costs during the lifespan.
4. What About Warranties?
Before investing in equipment, make sure the manufacturer will back up its product.
Any time equipment breaks down, you’ll lose money, and you could have lost revenue in thousands of dollars. Learn about the warranties and the standard warranties.
You should keep these different factors in mind when you compare the prices of pieces. It might be worth it to spend more on a piece of kitchen equipment that has a solid warranty.
5. Check the Equipment
When you get the new equipment, you should inspect the pieces. Make sure everything’s in working order before you sign for the product.
No matter the packaging efforts, products can get damaged during the shipping process.
The transport provider is responsible for replacing or repairing the damaged unit. The concealed damage might get noticed after you sign the freight bill.
If this happens, you should call the transport agent within a week. Request an inspection of the merchandise. Make sure you keep the packaging materials. Don’t move the damaged item from your restaurant.
After the inspection gets done, you should ask for a copy of the inspection report. Call the transport provider for information on how you should move forward with repairs. You might need a replacement.
6. Make Sure You Meet Local Codes
Before you buy commercial restaurant equipment, check all building, health, and fire codes. You want to make sure they meet the rules of your commercial kitchen.
Local codes will vary across the country. What may work in one location may not work in your area. Equipment operated without a vent in one state might need a hood in another spot.
Work with your local government to make sure the equipment and layout line up with local codes.
If you violate these codes, you could end up dealing with a fine, and the fine could cost you thousands of dollars.
7. What About Utilities?
Know where the utility outlets are in your area and kitchen, including things like gas, power, and water. You might need more information for the equipment other than the location of the utility.
You should know the incoming water temperature and pressure. For power, you should understand the current drawn from every circuit and how much it can handle.
You should know what plugs your outlets are set up for. Find out about the availability of natural propane and gas in your area. Figure out what one your kitchen’s set up for and if you need to change anything.
These things can be changed if necessary. An electrician will be able to change or add outlets. Companies will need conversion kits between natural gas and propane.
8. What About Long-Term Costs?
When you buy restaurant equipment, figure out the utility costs that can occur over the unit’s life.
In the summer, coolers and ice machines will need to work harder to remain calm, resulting in a lot of energy usage. Buy energy-efficient equipment to help lower the costs.
You should also know the maintenance needed for the unit. Determine how much care will cost if you end up neglecting the maintenance.
You should also learn about the life expectancy of the model you’re considering. It might make more sense to pay more for a unit that will last longer.
Start Shopping for Commercial Kitchen Equipment
We hope this guide on buying commercial kitchen equipment was helpful. It would help if you got pieces that will meet the local codes for your region. Make sure you work with your local government agency.
Are you looking for more business tips? Check out our resources on the blog.