Defining Commercial Refrigeration

Cory Greenhough FFD MD

Hi, I'm Cory - I'm the managing director here at FFD. 

Having grown up in a pub - knowing the industry better than the average Joe from an early age - you would have thought that before I decided to set up FFD as a company, I'd already have a pretty clear idea of the ins and outs of buying commercial.

It actually took a fair amount of research and conversation with industry professionals before I could confidently tell you I knew the rules inside and out.

This is why I felt it best to create this quick and easy guide to define commercial refrigeration - educating you, the customer, on the key things to keep in mind - whether you decide to buy from us, or elsewhere.

What is Commercial Refrigeration?

The main purpose of any commercial fridge or freezer is to generate optimum chilled conditions for the safe preservation of foods and beverages in any foodservice or catering setting.

All commercial equipment is designed with added durability, greater precision and enhanced efficiency in mind: capable of performing and withstanding even the toughest of conditions.

What Can You Expect When You Buy Commercial Refrigeration?


  • Unlike domestic warranties that cover any breakdown or problem, commercial warranties have limitations and restrictions.
  • A parts only warranty means that the customer automatically covers the full cost of any engineer visit.  
  • If breakdown is caused by user error rather than manufacturer fault, the call will be chargeable. 
  • Many commercial refrigeration suppliers will have a deposit scheme in place whereby a refundable deposit is taken prior to engineer call-out.
  • Commercial warranties only cover equipment when sited and used in a commercial capacity.
  • Handles, hinges, door seals, glass, shelves and lighting etc. that are subject to wear and tear are not covered.

Read more about commercial warranties.


  • Whereas domestic deliveries will often give an estimated delivery window, commercial deliveries will take place Monday to Friday, anytime between 8am and 6pm via third party courier companies.
  • Some manufacturers may offer a phone call about an hour before delivery however this isn’t standard.
  • Commercial deliveries are made on an 18 tonne lorry, that’s around the size of a double decker bus, so suitable access must be available.
  • Commercial deliveries are made to kerbside, at the nearest access point to the building.
  • Additional commercial delivery services are available for an additional cost including timed delivery slots and position and unpack services where equipment is taken into the building where there is flat, ground floor level access with no small steps or rises.
  • Commercial deliveries will only be made to the shipping address and must be signed for. If no-one is at the address to receive delivery a failed delivery charge is applied and a charge for redelivery will also be incurred.

Read more about commercial deliveries.


  • Commercial refrigeration must be regularly cleaned and maintained. This includes keeping vents and condensers etc. free from obstruction and clean of any dust or debris. 

Consumer Rights

  • Businesses are not privy to the rights and protection that the domestic market offers under the Consumer Rights Act.
  • Commercial purchases will be subject to a restocking fee should they be returned.
  • Whilst we do our best to accommodate any changes to orders, we cannot guarantee to be successful. Any cancelled order will typically result in a restocking charge.
  • Commercial purchases are accepted in the present condition at the time of delivery. After a signature has been acquired, the manufacturer is under no obligation to remedy any issue. 
  • We recommend signing for any commercial item as unchecked and notifying the supplier of any issue within 24 hours.

Find our full terms and conditions.

Top Tip: All suppliers source equipment from the same manufacturer. If an item is out of stock from one supplier it will be everywhere. Similarly, delivery and warranty services and terms are determined by the same manufacturer regardless of the supplier you choose to buy from.  

Benefits of Buying in a Commercial Capacity

There are plenty of regulations and restrictions when buying in a commercial capacity, however, there are also plenty of advantages that can be gained. 

When making a purchase as a commercial entity, VAT can be claimed back and offset against business expenses. Businesses can also take advantage of government led schemes such as the ECA (Enhanced Capital Allowance) and educational establishments may be able to take part in the Salix Energy Efficient Loan Scheme.

These initiatives allow commercial enterprises to claim money back on energy efficient equipment according to government guidelines. 

For more information regarding commercial refrigeration and answers to common queries take a look at our FAQs or contact us directly.