9 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Buying Kitchen Equipment

Without a doubt, the kitchen is the most important room in both a home and a food service establishment.

It’s where you spend time preparing dishes for family, friends, and of course, patrons. Make sure to purchase kitchen equipment after conducting thorough research to avoid significant losses over time.

Of course, there are differences between a home and a commercial kitchen. But, there are key principles that apply to both.

Perhaps you’re looking to invest in new cooking equipment as part of a home kitchen remodel. Or maybe you’re setting up a new commercial kitchen operation.

Either way, there are common mistakes that you should steer clear of to avoid ending up with the wrong equipment.

In this article, I’ll be discussing the key errors that people make when buying kitchen equipment and help you to avoid the same pitfalls.

Mistakes To Avoid When Buying Kitchen Equipment

So, without further ado, here is a list of the common and costly mistakes people make when buying kitchen equipment for either the home or restaurant kitchen:

Not Starting With Your Budget

There are various things to consider before you purchase kitchen equipment for your restaurant, cafe, diner, pub, club, or home.

You should always have a predetermined budget for your kitchen appliances and never overspend. It’s very easy to get caught up in marketing hype and buy appliances with features that you don’t need and frankly, will never use.

Focus on what you actually need from each kitchen appliance. Look at the various models that offer what you need and build a budget that takes into account the likely cost of each item.

Another important factor to keep in mind is that many kitchen appliances need additional components to operate efficiently. Include additional accessories and components in the appliance budget for your foodservice establishment and home, as well as likely maintenance costs.

Not Devoting Time to Research

Never purchase any kitchen equipment without conducting thorough research.

Spend time researching various ovens, freezers, refrigerators, mixers, and ranges that are perfect for your home kitchen or commercial food service establishment.

Consider the size, maintenance cost, initial investment, available space in your kitchen, and energy consumption before making a purchase.

Purchasing the wrong set of kitchen equipment can lead to significant losses.

Buying Equipment That You Don’t Actually Need

The choice is nearly endless when it comes to buying high-quality commercial kitchen equipment for restaurants, cafes, diners, and institutions.

You can purchase combi ovens, regular ovens, pizza prep tables, and refrigerators for pizzerias. If you’re opening a high-volume fast-food restaurant, your equipment needs will be different.

It’s the same for the home. Cook quality food every day? Your needs will be different compared to someone who just heats ready meals in the microwave.

Always opt for kitchen equipment that meets your needs.

For a commercial operation, consider the number of dishes, frequency, and turnaround time before buying any kitchen equipment.

At home, think of how often you cook, how many people you cook for and the type of food you frequently make.

Not Assessing Your Kitchen Layout

Knowing your kitchen’s layout is essential for the placement of kitchen appliances.

With the right layout for your home or commercial food service establishment, you can ensure that you have a functional and practical kitchen area.

A well-designed layout can help you get the most out of your available kitchen space.

Keep in mind that kitchen layouts are more than just the placement of appliances and storage.

Ergonomics play a significant role in kitchen dynamics. Great ergonomics can ensure enough space for swift movement of personnel and enough space for kitchen appliances.

Forgetting to Measure The Space

Many homeowners and commercial foodservice establishment owners disregard the available space in their kitchen, leading to multiple issues.

Make sure that you measure the depth, width, and height before purchasing any kitchen equipment.

For storage units, consider the available space when a drawer or cabinet door is opened. For restaurant owners, there should be enough space for your staff to move and operate.

Purchasing kitchen equipment that does not fit properly can change the dynamics of your kitchen.

You can bump into the equipment and hurt yourself. In addition, a cramped kitchen can significantly slow down the speed of a commercial kitchen – making profitability more of a challenge.

Not Exploring Different Price Points

Price is an essential factor when choosing kitchen equipment.

This goes back to the importance of research.

Spend time exploring the best prices and available discounts for all kitchen equipment. Often you might be able to stay within budget whilst getting a better deal on higher-end equipment than you’d initially planned for.

Never overpay for kitchen appliances!

Not Checking The Warranty

Kitchen appliances can malfunction without prior notice.

Repairs for most commercial kitchen equipment can run into thousands of dollars. As a result, it’s vital that you always check the warranty agreement before purchasing any kitchen equipment.

Most manufacturers offer standard coverage for a year. You can also opt for additional coverage at an extra cost.

Additionally, all kitchen appliances go through excessive wear because of regular usage. Be sure to run regular inspections and checks to identify any issues.

Forgetting to Consider Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is important for both homeowners and restaurateurs.

Reach-in freezers, walk-in freezers, dishwashers, and multifunctional ovens all consume a lot of energy. High-energy bills can burn a hole in your pocket.

For best results, always opt for Energy Star-rated appliances that can reduce your energy bills significantly and save you thousands of dollars per year.

Not Keeping an Open Mind to Innovations

Successful restaurant owners are riding the new wave of innovative cooking technology.

When planning your purchases, be on the lookout for efficient and technologically advanced kitchen equipment.

For example, you can reduce the turnaround for dishes with highly advanced multifunctional kitchen equipment like combi-ovens.

Why Choosing the Right Kitchen Equipment Is Crucial

Choosing the right kitchen equipment is essential for the proper functioning of a commercial or home kitchen.

With the right commercial kitchen equipment, you can deliver high-quality foods quickly and reduce the turnaround time for dishes. At home, the right equipment and cookware allow you to cook like a professional chef.

Avoid the critical and costly mistakes I’ve listed when considering kitchen equipment for your restaurant, cafe, diner, institution, or home.

Start with a predetermined budget for purchasing kitchen equipment. Avoid kitchen equipment that is too costly and consumes more power. Also, measure your kitchen space before you purchase any kitchen equipment.

Damon Shrauner

This article was written by Damon Shrauner, Senior Sales Consultant and VP on B2B Sales at CKitchen, working in the foodservice equipment sector since 1994. With his expertise in market analysis, product placement, sales, and project management, he will always tell you what to do for the best of your business.