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How to Clean a Display Case?

on May 01, 2024

Welcome to our guide on how to properly clean and maintain your refrigerated display case! In our previous discussion within the Refrigerated Display Cases Buyers' Guide, we explored the significance of these specialized units in various retail settings, from grocery stores to bakeries.

Now, let's delve into the crucial aspect of cleanliness and why it matters. Regular cleaning isn't just about aesthetics – it's essential for preserving the lifespan of your equipment, ensuring energy efficiency, upholding food safety standards, and maintaining an appealing presentation for your customers.

In this blog post, we'll cover the importance of cleaning your display case, provide a step-by-step cleaning regimen, discuss how often you should clean, and offer suggestions for choosing the right cleaner for your needs. Let's dive in and ensure your display case stays in top-notch condition!


What is a display case?

A refrigerated display case, is a specialized type of equipment used primarily in retail establishments, such as grocery stores, convenience stores, delis, bakeries, and other food-related businesses. Its purpose is to prominently showcase and preserve perishable products, such as food items and beverages, while maintaining their freshness and visual appeal for customers.


Why you should clean your refrigerated display case?

There are several key reasons why you should regularly clean your refrigerated display case:

  1. Proper cleaning and maintenance can significantly extend the lifespan of a display case, from the typical 10 years up to 20 years. Neglecting cleaning refrigerated display cases leads to the equipment working harder, which reduces its efficiency and shortens its lifespan.
  2. Clean refrigerated display cases operate more efficiently, using up to 90% less energy compared to dirty cases. Cleaning the coils, removing dust and debris, and maintaining proper seals helps the case run more efficiently.
  3. Regular cleaning, especially of the interior surfaces and shelves, is essential for maintaining proper hygiene and preventing cross-contamination of food items.This helps preserve the quality and freshness of the displayed products.
  4. Keeping the exterior and interior of the display case clean, polished, and free of smudges and debris helps maintain an attractive, inviting appearance that can draw in customers.

In summary, a comprehensive cleaning regimen that includes daily, weekly, and monthly tasks is vital for extending the life of the equipment, reducing energy costs, upholding food safety standards, and preserving the visual appeal of the refrigerated display case.


How to properly clean a refrigerated display case?

Based on the search results, here are the key steps to properly clean a display fridge:

  1. Inspect and remove any debris from the case daily.
  2. Once per week, wipe clean or vacuum the coils to remove dust.
  3. Every two weeks, inspect the door gaskets, hinges, and drawers to ensure they are clean and working properly.
  4. Once per month, check and clean the evaporator coils, as well as the housing and immediate area around the coils.
  5. Every two months, perform a “deep clean” of all refrigerated display cases, which may require calling in commercial refrigeration dealers.
  6. Use mild, non-harsh refrigerated display case cleaners and disinfectants that won't interact with the materials in the case or contaminate the food products.
  7. Remove the shelves, drawers, and products to thoroughly clean all interior surfaces, including hard-to-reach areas.
  8. Avoid blocking the airflow over the coils, as this can reduce the cooling capacity and efficiency of the unit.
  9. Practice good inventory management by rotating stock and positioning new items behind existing ones to prevent spoilage.

Following these regular cleaning and maintenance steps is vital for extending the lifespan of the refrigerated display case, improving its energy efficiency, and ensuring the safety and quality of the displayed food products.


How often should a display case case be cleaned?

On a daily basis, it's essential to conduct a brief inspection, removing any debris or buildup present within the case. Once a week, dedicate some time to addressing the coils, utilizing either a cloth or vacuum to eliminate accumulated dust. Bi-weekly, it's prudent to inspect the door gaskets, hinges, and drawers to confirm their cleanliness and proper operation.

Monthly maintenance entails a more thorough examination. Take the opportunity to assess and clean the evaporator coils, as well as the surrounding area. For a more comprehensive clean, it's advisable to schedule a deep clean every two months. This may involve enlisting the assistance of commercial refrigeration professionals for a thorough overhaul.

It's worth noting that while there's no one-size-fits-all protocol, some advocate for weekly cleaning intervals, while others suggest longer periods, such as every 90 days. However, the consensus emphasizes the importance of consistent upkeep, at least on a weekly and monthly basis, to ensure the efficiency and longevity of your refrigerated display case.


Refrigerated display case cleaners:

If you're in search of a reliable cleaner for your refrigerated display case, there are several options available on the market. Look for products specifically designed for cleaning refrigeration equipment to ensure compatibility and effectiveness.

You might consider products such as:

  1. Refrigeration Coil Cleaner: This type of cleaner is formulated to remove dirt, grease, and grime from the coils of refrigeration units, including display cases.
  2. Surface Cleaner: Choose a cleaner suitable for the surfaces of your display case, such as stainless steel or glass cleaner. Make sure it's safe for use around food and won't leave behind any harmful residues.
  3. Sanitizing Cleaner: To ensure food safety, opt for a sanitizing cleaner that can effectively kill bacteria and other pathogens commonly found in refrigeration environments.
  4. Eco-Friendly Options: If you prefer environmentally friendly products, there are cleaners available that are biodegradable and free from harsh chemicals.

Before purchasing any cleaner, be sure to read the product label and instructions carefully to ensure it's suitable for your specific display case and meets any regulatory requirements. Additionally, consider any specific cleaning protocols recommended by the manufacturer of your display case to maintain warranty coverage and optimal performance.



In conclusion, keeping your refrigerated display case clean is not just a matter of aesthetics; it's crucial for the longevity of your equipment, energy efficiency, food safety, and overall customer experience. By following a regular cleaning schedule and using appropriate cleaners, you can ensure that your display case continues to showcase your products in the best possible light.

At Vancouver Restaurant Supply, we understand the importance of maintaining your equipment!