Building a Walk-In Freezer

Written by emily beach
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Building a Walk-In Freezer
Commercial Walk-In Freezer (Wiki Commons)

Walk-in freezers are surprisingly easy to put together. They are found in many restaurants, food storage facilities and research laboratories, and are used to store large quantities of frozen material. Generally, they will encompass and entire room, but in some instances, they may be built in the corner of a larger room. Because these freezers come in kits, they are easy to assemble, even for those with little or no refrigeration experience. Newer models don't even require separate condensation lines or floor drains, making them the perfect choice for novice installers.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Walk-in freezer kit
  • Broom
  • Poly sheathing
  • Chalk line
  • Hex wrench or drill
  • Caulk

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  1. 1

    Determine which size freezer you will need by evaluating both available space and how much material you will need to fit inside on average.

  2. 2

    Purchase a walk-in freezer kit from a home improvement store or freezer dealer. The kit will consist of metal panels with urethane insulation sandwiched inside. These units are available in a large variety of shapes and sizes, so you can get one that matches your needs.

  3. 3

    Choose a model that has a built in evaporation unit so you don't have to worry about condensation drains. This is a common feature on most newer models, and will save many headaches over the years for those that are inexperienced in refrigeration principles.

  4. 4

    Prep the floor for installation. Sweep and clean the surface, then place a layer of waterproof sheathing down to act as a moisture barrier between the floor and the unit.

  5. 5

    Mark a chalk outline on the floor where you're freezer will go. Include the entire footprint of the bottom of the unit as well as the width of each side panel.

  6. 6

    Take the freezer our of the box and divide the panels. They should be labelled as far as top, bottom and each side. Divide them into 6 groups per these labels.

  7. 7

    Snap the panels for the bottom of the unit together and lay them out on your chalked outline. They will generally just snap together via a tongue-and-groove pattern, but some models may require a hex bolt or screw connection as well. The manufacturer's instructions can help with this step.

  8. 8

    Assemble each side wall and the top panels just as you have the bottom. The ceiling should be installed last so that it can rest on all four sides of the freezer for support.

  9. 9

    Install the entrance door by sliding it down onto the hinges, which should come pre-installed on the panels adjacent to the opening. These doors are heavy and will require more than one person to lift them. The balance of the hardware for these doors will generally come pre-installed as well.

  10. 10

    Caulk the entire perimeter of the unit at the joint where it meets the floor. This will help with insulation and will complete your installation.

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