Expert article_eco fridge_bills

Save Money, Boost Business: The Power of Energy-Efficient Refrigeration

Energy-efficiency has become an important benchmark when it comes to purchasing electrical appliances and equipment. Whether your goal is to reduce your energy bills or reduce your environmental impact, having an energy-efficient fridge can make a big impact due to the nature of refrigeration being highly energy intensive in hospitality, retail, and fleet businesses.

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Why should you upgrade to energy-efficient refrigeration?


Older refrigeration units use refrigerants such as HFCs (hydrofluorocarbon), which have a high global warming potential (GWP) and are being phased out by the Australian government’s energy rating authority. The cost of repairs for these refrigerants has been increased to encourage the transition to natural gases. As such, not only do older refrigeration units consume more energy meaning they cost more to run but also can require more maintenance to keep them running at an optimal standard and safety. This is not just due to their advancing age, but also because parts are becoming less accessible and technicians are focusing their training and workforces more on their newer, more energy-efficient counterparts.



Should you replace your refrigeration unit?


You should replace your fridge or freezer if:


– It uses a phased-out refrigerant;

– It is more than 10 years old;

– It is in poor condition, is damaged, and/or corroded; and/or

– Your business’s needs have changed, and a smaller or larger unit would be more suitable.


We’d be happy to provide information on how much money your business could save by purchasing energy-efficient refrigeration equipment. You can contact our friendly team to discuss your needs today.



How to know if a fridge is energy-efficient


If you have an old fridge or freezer, it can be tricky to find the information you need to know about its energy-efficiency. A good rule of thumb is if the unit’s age is ten years or older, it’s likely that it uses older-style refrigerants which impacts its energy-efficient. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that fridges that run on HFCs are still available for purchase, but the cost of maintenance has dramatically increased, making it the more expensive choice long term. Additional features that contribute to reduced energy consumption include double glazed doors and self-closing doors.


Most importantly, you should consider your business’s needs first when purchasing commercial fridges. When browsing products, compare only like for like products. For example, features like having a glass door can significantly increase energy usage compared to a solid door. Comparing similar sized units and features and think about which unit has the most appropriate application for your service.



Check the specifications:


  • GEMS Star Rating – The more stars, the more energy-efficient the unit is. You can read more about the GEMS Star Rating system here.


  • Energy consumption – This tells you how much energy is consumed per hour, shown as kWh, a helpful spec to calculate your running costs.


  • Refrigerant type – Phased out refrigerant types include CFCs, HCFCs and HFCs which have higher global warming potential and energy usage.



5 benefits of using energy-efficient commercial refrigeration


1. Cost savings – Reducing your energy bills and operating costs means increased profits and more money to invest in other parts of your business.


2. Environmental sustainability – Energy-efficient fridges produce a smaller carbon footprint and have less impact on the environment.


3. Improved performance – Newer technologies in refrigeration have produced fridges that maintain a more consistent temperature. In addition to using less power, energy-efficient fridges keep your food safe and ready for service which can result in reduced food waste.


4. Enhanced brand reputation – by demonstrating your commitment to being a sustainability business, you can attract new environmentally conscious customers. With an increasing expectation for corporate responsibility, energy-efficient fridges are a great place to start.



Image of a female customers shopping in a grocery store picking an item from the fridge.



5. Compliance with Australian energy-efficiency standards and targets – Rest assured that your energy-efficient fridge meets the Australian testing standards and that your fridge runs safety (e.g. maintaining the right internal temperature) to remain compliant with food safety regulations.


At Bromic Refrigeration, we offer a range of energy-efficient products that use “Natural Refrigerant” technology (hydrocarbons). By choosing energy-efficient refrigeration, you can enjoy peace of mind, knowing that your equipment is not only compliant with Australian standards but is saving you money so you can focus on running and growing your business. You can find Natural Refrigerant units here.



Government incentives around energy-efficiency


To encourage Australian businesses to invest in energy-efficient commercial refrigeration and to help simplify the transition, the Australian government offers incentives and rebates. You can read more about them here or follow the links below to see if they apply to you:




Real life example of ROI from upgrading to energy-efficient refrigeration


Café owner, Miranda has used her drinks display fridge for eight years. Although the fridge is still working, Miranda wants to increase her items per sale by encouraging customers to purchase drinks on-the-go, in addition to their coffee/meal. She determines her new fridge requirements to be a large, 2-door fridge with maximum space capacity for drinks with a glass door so customers can see the products. Here is a comparison based on the upgrade of her drinks fridge:


An image comparing two fridges from different brands on a black, white and green background.

MeasureCurrent Drinks FridgeA Bromic GM1100S-NR fridge (A Natural Refrigerant unit)
Refrigerant R134a R290
Volume (Capacity)976L1126L
GEMS star rating38
Energy consumption15.3kWh/24h 8.64kWh/24h
Glass typeDouble glazed Double glazed Low-E Glass + Argon Gas
Additional features N/ASelf-closing door
Energy cost per year based on an average $0.20 per kWh, with 24 hours of use, 7 days per week, 52 weeks of the year$1116.90 $630.72

The new fridge’s energy consumption is lower, particularly thanks to its use of R290, a natural refrigerant, which results in lower energy costs. The volume of the new fridge is higher, meaning Miranda can store more drinks with less energy usage. While both the old and the new fridge feature double glazed glass, the Bromic model has low-e glass and argon glass features, both of which improve the energy-efficiency of the cabinet as less heat is transferred through the glass. The new fridge’s self-closing door also helps to reduce energy consumption.


Based on the above table, Miranda would save $486.18 per year or $4861.80 over a 10-year lifespan by upgrading to the newer model, GM1100S-NR.



Image of a female café owner in her venue smiling at the camera and holding an ipad.



Energy-efficient refrigeration units can make a meaningful difference


It’s clear that switching to energy-efficient refrigeration can deliver multiple benefits for your business, including cost savings, environmental sustainability, improved performance, enhancing your brand reputation and compliance with Australian energy-efficiency standards and targets. Why not explore how it could work for your business?


Looking to upgrade? Contact the Bromic team to discuss our range of commercial refrigerators and freezers to find the most appropriate energy efficient product for your needs.


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