Buy Replacement Walk-in Parts

Has your walk-in cooler or freezer seen a lot of use and abuse over the years? Door parts on walk-ins are particularly susceptible due to heavy traffic and may become worn or break. In the past we have exclusively provided walk-in parts for our units by calling our parts line 866-261-2797 (8-5PM CST). U.S. Cooler is proud to announce the launch of our new parts website walkincoolerparts.com. The site will allow you to create an account and save items in your cart to be purchased at a later date. It also offers the convenience of 24/7 ordering, free shipping, secure checkout and no minimum purchase amounts.

Currently, our online catalog only offers parts that are standard on U.S. Cooler walk-ins. These include cam locks, closers, gaskets, handles, hinges, light fixtures, screed and more. In the coming months, we will begin adding additional items to our catalog encompassing parts that require specific sizing or aren’t found on U.S. Cooler manufactured units.

cooler parts

Walk-in Cooler Parts accepts Visa, Discover, and MasterCard. Appropriate sales taxes will be charged for shipments to California, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri and Texas.

Hard to Open Doors and Pressure Differences in Your Walk-in Box

Improper fixes to hard-to-open doors can cause ice and frost build-up, water dripping on
floors, freezing around door seals and unusual icing patterns in and around the refrigeration equipment.

Nature’s Basics

The physical nature of air causes a cooler or freezer to have a negative pressure compared to the outside air. This is due to the contraction of the air as the temperature drops. The pressure of the air in a sealed box will decrease by 0.3 psi for every drop in temperature of 10 degrees Fahrenheit.
Note: This negative pressure is not caused by the refrigeration equipment removing air. The evaporator fans just cool the air and push it around the box. They don’t have any exhaust venting or “makeup air” being brought in from the outside (like they do in air conditioning systems).

Check it Yourself

The most dramatic pressure change happens when the door is closed. Warm air that entered a cold freezer will be cooled within seconds by contact with the ceiling, walls and product. If the average air temperature quickly drops from 40 to 30 degrees, the pressure drops by 0.3 psi. That’s 43 pounds per square foot, over 800 pounds of force on a normal size door. The door will be impossible to re-open until the pressure is equalized.
Note: The bigger the size of the door and the more airtight the box, the more dramatic it will be.

Copeland Scroll Outdoor Condensing Unit

Copeland now carries outdoor condensing units for the food service industry. There new light weight, slim shaped units are available in medium and low temperatures ranging from 2 – 6 horsepower.

Copeland Scroll Outdoor Condensing Units are perfectly suited for walk-in cooler and freezer applications. All units integrate the many benefits of the Copeland Scroll compressor technology, fan speed control and Copeland Performance Alert™ diagnostic controls, and are available in 208/230 single-phase and 208/230 three-phase voltage applications.

copeland scroll unitScroll compressors offer the highest energy efficiency levels to lower energy bills. With integrated controls that optimize fan motor speed to maximize the heat transfer through over-sized condenser coils, additional energy savings are achieved. The average energy savings for end-users is $350 per year for a 3HP medium temperature unit, however this number could be greater depending on the application.

Walk-in Freezers Used to Heat Water?

At U.S. Cooler, we strive to bring more value to our customers. One of the ways we accomplish that is by keeping informed on opportunities to improve your bottom line.

orange walk-in coolerDid you know your walk-in coolers and freezers are potentially capable of doing double-duty?  It’s a well kept secret you may wish to consider.  Depending upon your existing (or hopefully new, from U.S. Cooler) equipment, you may be able to save thousands of dollars annually by capturing the heat rejected from air-cooled condensing units and using it to preheat hot water.

Types of Refrigeration Systems Used in Walk-Ins

Refrigeration systems consist of a condensing unit and an evaporation coil. The condensing unit is located outside the walk-in and the evaporator is located inside the walk-in. The compressor compresses gas to a liquid. The liquid is then pumped through the condensing unit coil while a fan blows outside air through the coil. Gas is condensed to a liquid and is then pumped through a small copper pipe into the walk-in to the evaporator coil. There, through the expansion valve located in the evaporator coil the liquid is allowed to expand back into a gas. The expansion of the liquid to a gas causes a rapid chilling of the evaporator coil. Since heat always flows toward cold, inside the walk-in air is blown across the evaporation coil to let the coil absorb heat from inside the walk-in. The gas is then allowed to exit the walk-in through a larger copper pipe to the condensing unit where it is once again compressed and cooled to a liquid state and returned to the evaporator coil inside the walk-in. There the cycle is started over.

The new EISA law requires all new walk-ins be equipped with high efficiency motors to be compliant. These cost a little bit more but save you money in the long run. Some suppliers may try to sell you non EISA compliant refrigeration systems. To be compliant with the law and purchase the best lifetime value always ask for EISA compliant equipment.

Refrigeration System Types

1. Remote Systems – Remote systems are the least expensive systems to purchase. They consist of a condensing unit, evaporator unit and misc. parts such as expansion valve, site glass, dryer, pump down solenoid thermostat, and on freezers a timer and drain heater to install the system. They require the use of a licensed refrigeration installer since they are pumped down and charged with refrigerant gas on site. The installer will also charge for any other parts needed for the install such as copper pipe, pipe insulation, connectors, and electrical. They are less expensive systems to buy with the walk-in but may cost more over all depending on what the going hourly rate is with the installer and the cost of the parts he provides. They also provide an advantage by allowing the condensing unit to be located outside the building. There the condensing unit can dump its heat without adding extra heat to the building and air conditioning systems.

Firehouse Renovation on Illinois Stories

Craig Industries / U.S. Cooler’s corporate offices are located in a renovated firehouse in Quincy, Illinois. Engine House No. 4 was originally built in 1898 and housed two horse-drawn fire wagons. It was used by the fire department until 1940 and has subsequently been used for textile manufacturing. In the Fall of 2008, Craig Industries completed a restoration of the building that was faithful to the original design. The interior features modern amenities but still has a nostalgic feel with the original brick walls and  wooden supports intact.

Engine House No. 4 will be featured on the PBS program Illinois Stories at 6:30pm, December 10th (WSEC – Jacksonville/Springfield, WQEC – Quincy, QMEC – Macomb).

Illinois Stories: From the river heritage of Quincy and Hannibal, to the bounty of the richest farmland on earth, Mark McDonald hosts this Emmy award winning series about the people and places of central and western Illinois. PBS

firehouse renovate

How to Replace Walk-in Refrigerator Door Gaskets

torn walk-in gasket
Torn gaskets should be replaced ASAP.

The vinyl door gasket on the inside edge of the door for your walk-in cooler or freezer is very important. It creates a seal the keeps cold air from escaping, which means the unit will stay colder longer and use less energy. Old gaskets wear out and lose their seal. Even worse, older gaskets can pose a food safety risk because they begin to collect grime and food bits and become a breeding ground for bacteria.

Luckily, it’s easy to replace door gaskets!  There are several different styles of gaskets. To insure you get the proper gasket, gather the following information:

1. Dimension of gasket – Measure from outside corner to outside corner for both height and width. For Some suppliers prefer the dart to dart measurements (center of gasket) or the door opening size. It’s best to measure several different areas to be sure you receive the correct size.

2. Manufacturer – Get the manufacturer’s name and the model and serial number of the walk-in. The tag containing this information may be in the door jamb or mounted somewhere on the inner frame.

magnetic gasket
Magnetic door gaskets are the most common.

3. Style –  Check to see if the gasket is magnetic or non-magnetic(compression). Almost all newer refrigeration equipment will have a magnetic gasket . A magnetic gasket will be hard and square at the point where it contacts the inside frame of the unit. Magnetic gaskets will also snap shut when you hold the door less than an inch from the frame because the magnet attracts to the metal.

compression style gasket
A compression style door gasket.

Compression gaskets usually need a door latch to hold them tight in place to get a good seal. These gaskets are soft and compress easily at the point where they contact the inside frame of the unit.

Door gaskets are also categorized by how they attach to the door.  There are 3 ways a door gasket mounts on a door: snap in (or dart), push in, and screw in.

Walk-in Saves Lives During Tornado

On Wednesday, August 19th, a tornado ripped through the village of Williamsville, IL leaving parts of the town a disaster with many home’s lost. One particular building that was in the direct path of the storm was a Casey’s General Store. When the storm rolled in, there were 9 employees and customers in the store. The entire front wall of the building was blown out leaving no shelter for the group in the store. Immediately they took cover in the walk-in cooler where they safely remained until the storm ended. After the storm, the only structure of the building still intact and left unharmed was the walk-in combination unit. Check with your local emergency center for the emergency plan that best fits your location.

Taken right after the tornado hit Casey's General Store in Williamsville, IL.
Taken right after the tornado hit Casey’s General Store in Williamsville, IL.
After store clean-up.
After the store clean-up.

Additional pictures of the damage.