Imperial’s Heavy Duty (HD) commercial freezer was extremely popular throughout all of it’s iterations. Despite eventually being discontinued many are still running well today and they are sought after by people looking for a cheap and dependable freezer for their restaurant or home. Provided you know what to look for and where to look you can also find a great Imperial freezer to suit your needs.
Places to Look for Imperial HD Commercial Freezers
Since you will need to transport whatever you buy it is best to start off by looking locally. The best place to start is the local newspapers and classifieds sections. Especially keep an eye out for any restaurants that are going out of business and are selling off their appliances and kitchenwares. You should be able to pick up some really great bargains from restaurants if you can find them. In addition to this you should check out retailers of reconditioned appliances. These places will have done all of the repair work for you and will cover their appliances with a warranty so you can save time and get some piece of mind.
If all else fails you can try looking online on places like eBay and Craigslist. Do a search and limit it to within driving distance or freight if you are willing to pay. You may be able to get a good price in an eBay auction but don’t forget that you still need to transport the freezer so factor that into your final costs.
Expectations of Price
The average price of second-hand Imperial commercial freezers is around $500 but this can vary widely by model and condition. You could pay as little as $150 for an older model or as high as $800 for a very good condition post-2010 model. Remember to factor any repair costs that you may have to take on yourself before you decide if a particular freezer is a good deal or not. The $150 option might seem like a good deal until you realize that you will have to pay another $200 in repairs.
Typical Issues to Look Out For when Looking at Imperial HD Freezers
This line of freezers are quite dependable and there are not that many problems associated with them. However, like any used product there are a few things that you should watch out for so that you can make a fully informed decision.
Buzzing Noises – This is a common problem associated with the compressor. Best case scenario is that it is an electrical relay fault, which can easily be fixed by an electrician or appliance mechanic. Worst case scenario is that the compressor is faulty or damaged and will need replacing. You can get replacement parts from many online sellers or buy taking one off another freezer.
No Key for Door Lock – Keys are a commonly lost item and keys for freezers are no exception. Thankfully this is one of the easiest problems to fix. You can get master keys from most key makers that will unlock almost any freezer lock, just tell the key maker what type of freezer it is. Alternatively you could just remove the lock if you wont be needing it.
Over Frosting – Another common problem with older freezers is excessive frost. Frost is caused by moisture in the air condensing and freezing. This typically occurs when the door is constantly opened or if the seals are damaged. To test your freezer leave it closed and on for a few days, if no frost appears then your seals are fine. If frost does appear you will need to have your seals replaced. Thankfully this is fairly cheap, just give your local rubber specialists a call.
Bonus Tips for Buying an Imperial Heavy Duty Commercial Freezer
If you want to save money on your energy bill then you should specifically look at models from 2010. In 2010 the Imperial range was upgraded to increase it’s energy efficiency and they were given an improved energy star rating.
Manuals can be hard to come by but the best places to look are eBay and used bookstores. You can also find some electronic copies online for free. If you can’t find your exact model’s manual (as identified by the model number and year) a manual that is from a year close to your freezer’s may suffice.
Always give each freezer a 100% inspection before purchasing. Take note of any large dents or any internal damage. Check the seals and, if possible, ask to see it plugged in and turned on. Every little thing could help save you money on repairs in the long run and could become a powerful bargaining tool for you if you politely point the problems out to the seller.