Click to ExpandUnderstanding Food and Beverage Refrigeration Components

Refrigeration systems are necessary for food and beverage establishments, including supermarkets, and restaurants, but also manufacturing facilities, breweries, and processing plants. . Your entire business might be jeopardized if your refrigeration system fails. Therefore, it is critical to understand refrigeration components for food and beverage applications.

The purpose of refrigeration in the industrial setting is to maintain the optimal temperature for processing, packaging, and storing food and beverages.

Main Refrigeration Components

To understand how refrigeration systems work to keep food and beverages cool, it is crucial to look at their inner workings. The following are the main components of refrigeration:


The compressor is the principal part of the procedure, as it is the main driver of the refrigerant it works like a pump to circulate the refrigerant. It compresses the gas and generates a pressure differential that propels the refrigerant through the circuit in a constant cycle.


Next, the condenser is filled with superheated, pressurized refrigerant. Then, it cools the refrigerant and converts it  to a liquid form.

Condensers are classified into three categories:


This type of condenser is often found in smaller refrigerators and is also known as a coil condenser because of its aluminum or copper coils at the back. These coils help increase the surface area of the refrigerant for cooling.

Air-cooled condensers are divided into two types: the natural convection condenser — which uses the natural flow of air to chill the refrigerant — and the forced convection condenser, which employs a fan to draw in cold air.


This type of condenser is utilized in large factories. They use water to cool the refrigerant, often performing better in higher ambient temperatures. It is further subdivided into three types: tube-in-tube or double pipe type, shell and coil type, and shell and tube type.


Evaporative condensers are the primary condenser used for industrial applications. The evaporative condenser leverages not only air cooling, but the added effect of evaporative cooling utilizing water. Evaporative condensers are the most efficient and allow for lower head pressure to run a system more efficiently.

Expansion Valve

The expansion valve helps lower refrigerant pressure and temperature. The abrupt reduction in pressure produces a cooling effect called “flash gas” bringing the refrigerant down in temperature. The expansion valve also controls how much refrigerant is needed to fulfill load requirements.

Expansion valves come in various types: capillary tube, constant pressure, automatic throttling valve, thermostatic expansion valve, float valve, and motorized valve


An evaporator is tasked with absorbing heat inside the refrigeration system. It also serves as a medium for heat transfer from the stored load to the refrigerant. This refrigerant is then transformed into a vapor where it is later compressed by the compressor.

Innovative Refrigeration Solutions From Kuhlman

Companies in the food and beverage sector must maintain low temperatures in production and post-production settings to prevent unsafe or unsustainable production operations. At Kuhlman Incorporated, our industrial refrigeration systems enable businesses to meet these exact temperature requirements! This results in improved food production, storage, and distribution conditions, greater product quality, and extended product shelf life.

Contact us today to discuss your refrigeration needs!

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