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A restaurant HVAC system is one of the most important elements of its operation, and may be more important than many other industries. Imagine what would happen if there were never any efforts made to regulate the air quality of an environment where smoke, grease, splatter and extreme temperatures are common, everyday, occurrences, or if the tools to do this suddenly broke down.

People go to restaurants for a hassle-free meal out in a comfortable environment. Whether they’re enjoying a gourmet, five-star dining experience or grabbing a quick burger, they expect to be able to eat their meal in a comfortable, well-ventilated and climate-controlled atmosphere.

On the other side of that swinging kitchen door, a restaurant’s employees deserve a clean, comfortable and healthy work environment, where the smoke and heat that generates in the kitchen can quickly escape, and they can work comfortably in the fast-paced workday.

Commercial HVAC systems for restaurants are critically important for a variety of reasons, and Universal Mechanical Group is ready to make sure your New Jersey restaurant has the best system for your eatery. We have worked with the New Jersey restaurant community for years to service their commercial HVAC installation, maintenance and repair needs. Contact us at (973) 866-5445 today so we can help you.

Importance of Commercial HVAC Units for Restaurants

Data from the New Jersey Restaurant Association reveals that there are over 19,000 places to eat and drink in the state, and that these businesses generate an astounding $18 billion in sales per year and employ eight percent of the state’s workforce. None of this would be possible without proper restaurant HVAC systems.

While restauranteurs tend to focus on other elements of their business, such as linens, lighting, kitchen equipment and more, a properly ventilated and temperature-regulated environment is absolutely key to their employees’ health and productivity, as well as the quality of customers’ experience. Whether you’re operating a 10-seat diner in Clifton or a large Bar and Grille in Montclair, your restaurant HVAC system may be the most important part of doing business.

Three Main Reasons Why You Needs a Quality Restaurant HVAC Setup

Your Employees

We’ve all heard the phrase “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.” This expression holds special meaning for employees in the restaurant industry. From the front-of-house employees who interact with customers to (especially) the kitchen staff, like line cooks, prep cooks and sous chefs who spend all day in front of the fire, your employees are exposed to high levels of heat all day during their shift, not to mention large amounts of smoke and grease splatter.

A high-quality, well-maintained restaurant HVAC system ensures that heat and smoke can escape. If you’ve ever tried cooking in an environment without a proper HVAC system, you will understand immediately how difficult and uncomfortable it can be.

Your Customers

Nobody wants to eat in an environment that’s too hot or cold or where smoke and stale air are just sitting around, filling the room. While we love the delicious smells that emanate from the kitchen of our favorite restaurants, we want to make sure they stay there, and not cling to our clothes on the way home.

A quality restaurant HVAC system is critical to an enjoyable customer experience, and is one of the most important investments you can make in your establishment. How likely do you think customers are to return to your restaurant if they can’t breathe, or are sweating during their meal?

Your Products and Inventory

Time for a little Restaurant 101: restaurants serve food…and food spoils. While there’s a difference between HVAC and refrigeration, proper heating and cooling is critical to the preservation of things like meat, produce, cheeses and event spices and liquor. If you’re spending money on the highest-quality ingredients, you want to make sure that they’re actually going to be able to make it to the plate, and not spoil.

A properly functioning restaurant HVAC system ensures the longevity of your inventory so your staff can serve your customers the very best, and keep them coming back to your restaurant again and again.

Performing Proper Restaurant HVAC System Maintenance

It is generally recommended that commercial HVAC systems be serviced twice per year for routine maintenance; however, restaurant HVAC systems generally need more love than facilities like office buildings and retail outlets. For one thing, there are industry-specific air variables, such as constant smoke, grease and other factors that get sucked up into your system on a constant basis.

For another, restaurants are open more frequently and at far longer intervals than 9-5 offices, warehouses and retail outlets. For this reason, it is generally recommended that higher-traffic restaurants undergo routine maintenance around three to four times per year to ensure optimal performance. UMGService offers expert, immediate and comprehensive service of your restaurant’s HVAC system.

How Much Does Restaurant HVAC Installation Cost?

Multiple factors can determine the need and cost of maintenance, such as building size,  heating and cooling requirements, ductwork location, complexity of the installation, type of equipment being installed and more. UMGService works with restaurants all over New Jersey to help them determine what type of HVAC system is best for their establishment. We install all types, brands and sizes of restaurant HVAC systems, and offer some of the most competitive pricing in the state.

The HVAC needs of a small diner or café are not the same as a large franchise restaurant; and UMGService specializes in helping our customers in the restaurant industry make smart, prudent, realistic and affordable choices when it comes time to replace or install their system. There are multiple options, and we’ll be happy to help you make the right choice.

Common Types of Restaurant HVAC Repair Issues

The reality is that restaurants’ HVAC systems take a beating day in and day out. This constant and unrelenting level of abuse renders an eatery’s heating and cooling units vulnerable to all manner of repair issues, including but not limited to:

Uneven or Unbalanced Airflow

Is your kitchen not getting cool enough? Is your dining room freezing? Are you noticing hot and cold spots in certain areas of your establishment? What about weak airflow from the vents or registers? This can mean a variety of issues related to your restaurant’s HVAC system, such as a minor issue like debris or build-up in your air filter or something more serious like a problem with a furnace motor, condenser coil or another major component.  Start the troubleshooting process by ensuring all he vents and registers are open and listening for noises. If clearing the air vents doesn’t help, and you’re noticing an odd smell or unusual sound, call a repair professional.

Duct Work Issues

When dust, debris and particulates from your restaurant’s air can no longer be collected in filters because they’re too clogged, it quickly accumulates in the duct work, which can lead to additional build-up and cause all manner of issues. Leaks and cracks in your HVAC system can cause serious problems for your restaurant, including uneven cooling or heating or even rodents and other kinds of pests getting into ceiling.  

The one thing every restaurant owner knows going into the restaurant management game is that you don’t want pests anywhere near your establishment, especially infiltrating the inside. The site of just one rat or mouse scurrying about your kitchen is enough to immediately shut your doors for good. Even if your customers never see the animal, they can be knocked out of their chairs by the smell of a dead pest that’s rotting in your ceiling because it couldn’t find its way out.

One way to protect against these business-crippling issues is by ensuring all cracks in your duct work are sealed and there are no gaps in assembly or connection. Apart from regular heating and cooling maintenance, restaurants and other commercial operations should consider having their air ducts cleaned once every few years to ensure healthy air quality. This is particularly important for businesses who cater to customers that may have asthma, allergies or other respiratory health issues.

Keep Your Head in the Kitchen: Let Us Worry about Your Restaurant’s HVAC Needs

Statistics show that over 60 percent restaurants fail within the first year, 80 percent close after five years, and that more and more closing every day. In a business where every minute can represent hundreds of dollars, don’t let a malfunctioning HVAC system be the reason why your restaurant loses time and money.

Whether you are operating a small café in Alpine, NJ; East Rutherford, NJ; Edgewater, NJ; Englewood, NJ; Franklin lakes, NJ; Glen Rock, NJ; Mahwah, NJ; Maywood, NJ; Palisades Park, NJ; Paramus, NJ or you own a larger fine-dining establishment or bar and grill in cities like Ridgewood, NJ; Rutherford, NJ; Saddle Brook, NJ; Saddle River, NJ; Ho Ho Kus, NJ; Demarest, NJ; Woodcliff Lakes, NJ, Universal Mechanical Group is a leader in New Jersey restaurant HVAC installation, repair and maintenance.

Call us today at (973) 866-5445 to let us know what we can do for you. Running a restaurant is hard enough, and we’re determined to do our part to help you succeed. We proudly serve clients in Bergen County, Union County, Essex County and all over the state.