It’s normal for restaurant businesses to run into the complication of having to replace things regularly. This keeps the company running smoothly when there is a high demand for production. The real question comes when you wonder how to know when to buy new restaurant equipment for your store. This is important to know when attempting to keep your organization alive and well.
When the Warranty Expires
When your equipment’s warranty expires, there is a need for concern. A couple of things should come to mind with management as this happens. You could either invest in a secondary warranty to extend the coverage of the current equipment item or invest in another one. But this doesn’t always work out how we want it to. If the item is still in good working condition, management may decide to keep it and run it until it no longer works. This is the economic approach. However, a new warranty does not necessarily guarantee a new piece of equipment if anything goes wrong. Some terms and conditions come with warranties.
If It Fails To Operate
When a piece of equipment stops working, you need to purchase a new one, without a doubt. If the equipment is no longer serviceable and you can’t repair it, it’s time to look elsewhere for its replacement. When this becomes the issue, other things come to mind, such as whether to buy new or used. Just because it’s new doesn’t mean that it’s always the best deal. You may get a better deal by financing a new or gently used piece of equipment through a lease. Or maybe you found an older, lesser-used model for sale that operated much better than the newer and more updated editions on the market. Your business will have to shop around to make those determinations.
Constant Repairs Needed
The thing with having a business of any kind is that you know things will break down over time. However, the key thing to look out for is consistent problems with the same items. If you have a piece of equipment that has the same problems repeatedly, such as needing adjustments and replacements, imagine how much money your company has lost by keeping it operational.
Now consider how much it would take to buy another piece of equipment for the same or less value that is newer or has less wear on it. Its lifespan can exceed what yours has left on it by at least a few years. Many pieces of equipment constantly need repairs, so you should always keep your eyes open for better replacements. This is especially true in restaurants, where you use your equipment all day long, every day. You need to find equipment built to last and operate for years before its final breakdown.
Affects Production and Sales
You also have to consider your equipment and its productivity. There’s no point in having it if it doesn’t work well enough. It’s no different than having that microwave at home that you know you’ve needed to replace for the longest time. You just haven’t gotten around to it yet, and because of this, it keeps giving you trouble and won’t cook your food right, or sometimes not at all.
When this happens at a restaurant, there is a serious need for concern, and you need to act immediately. It’s necessary to alert management about the issue so they can resolve it as soon as possible. Even if you can no longer operate a device, things can still run as they need to. However, it puts stress on the staff and kitchen, hurting the waiting staff and ultimately taking its toll on the sales and production. People will only wait so long for their food because they have busy lives and schedules of their own.
When It Becomes a Hazard
Above all else, safety should always be the first concern. It’s not safe to be in a business that doesn’t practice safe habits in the workplace, so there are government mandates for such things. However, when equipment starts acting up and not performing up to speed, this could cause a whole host of problems and potentially hurt someone.
If your grill and fryers can’t hold a temperature and only cook on high because management hasn’t had them calibrated in several years, you run the risk of burning your business to the ground. Or, if your freezer has leaky pipes that cause it to condensate, you could end up with ice on the floor of your walk-in freezer and ice-covered food that you only meant to chill. Your employees could potentially slip and fall due to this hazard, and the food may not cook through evenly, putting your customers at risk of contracting a foodborne illness. You want to ensure you cook your food all the way through, and faulty equipment can cause some issues with that.
Using Secondhand Equipment
Sometimes purchasing a piece of equipment secondhand is worth the investment; however, you always run the risk of it breaking down on you sooner rather than later. The first thing to think about is that you have no idea what kind of rigor the previous owner put it through before the purchase and how much they had used it. If your business chooses to do this to save money, it may end up costing you more over time, depending on how things work out. Just knowing that there is used equipment in your store should give you the inclination that it’s time to shop for another unit. Consider purchasing new commercial-grade food equipment this time; it may end up being the better investment. But only time will tell.
Managing a restaurant and keeping an eye on things can be tricky. This influences our inclination of how to know when to buy new restaurant equipment and when to hold back and reinvest in something else for the time being. This can be a difficult endeavor, but it’s one that only you can ride out by using good judgment.