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Site Survey For A Commercial Dishwasher

How to carry out a site survey for your Dishwasher or Glasswasher

A site survey should be carried out prior to placing you order with us. An inexpensive way of doing this is by doing it yourself. If you have not done one before, then this page will be an excellent guide in how to carry out a site survey for a glasswasher, an under counter dishwasher or a hood type dishwasher.

It is a good idea to print this page out and carry it with you for reference. We have tried to think of everything that we have come across before on a site survey to help you out, but if you think that we have missed something, please let us know.

What none of us want is for you to order a new Glass washer or Dishwasher from Intellico and when the equipment arrives it does not fit through the doors of your premises, or you order a 3 Phase electric dishwasher and you only have single phase power available. These are only a few examples, lets try and avoid any mistakes together...

There are 5 main issues to consider when you are carrying out a site survey which cover the bases in going from your Current set up compared to your Future set up.

  • Access and Exit (new machine in, old machine out)
  • Electrical Supply
  • Water Supply (Hot or Cold pressure, hardness/softness of supply)
  • Waste Water outlet (Height and diameter)
  • Who will be present to help lift or move the machine

To get an answer to the issues that you will face, you should arm yourself with the following tools:

  • Pen or pencil and paper.
  • Measuring tape (that measures in cm and mm) wxdxh of machine and space available.
  • Torch (for looking under sinks, behind machines and into dimly lit fuse boxes).
  • Your mobile phone with Intellico no. 0800 074 8122 stored for if you have any questions you need help with.

Access for your new Dishwasher and/or Glasswasher

This is extremely important. Once you have decided where the Glass washer and/or Dishwasher will be located and operate from, you must check to make sure that it will fit through a door (front, side, back, emergency exit) and safely get to where you want it to be. Are there any stairs that need to be negotiated?

Remember that if you have an existing machine that is being replaced, consider the 'access' measurements for the exit of your old warewasher. If it is a hood type or passthrough dishwasher, take width sizes from handle to handle. Doors may need to be taken off of their hinges to accomodate a passthrough dishwasher.

There may have been renovations to the commercial kitchen or bar since the old machine was installed a number of years earlier - don't assume that because one fitted in before, that it can be removed ok and the new one put in. Always measure!

All of our machines have the details of their dimensions on the page, i.e. the PROhood 2 Pass through dishwasher. Take a note of these sizes and make sure that it will fit before placing your order.

Electrical Supply for the warewasher

  • How is the existing machine wired up? 13Amp plug or hard wired into a rotary switch or terminal?
  • Where is the fuse to isolate the machine and what is its rating? 25Amp, 32Amp or higher.
  • If it works off a single fuse, then the machine is single phase.
  • Is it a 3 Phase machine? 3x16Amp fuses, 3x20Amp fuses or higher?

If the machine is being upgraded to a more powerful one, then as well as upgrading the fuse, an electrician may have to upgrade the supply cable (from 2.5mm to 6mm twin and earth) and switches. The supply cable is the cable from the fuse box to the socket or terminal next to where the machine will be positioned.

This is an area where your local electrician should be able to help you out if you need further assistance. Luckily, most of the machines we sell are multi power and can be switched on-site to accomodate your current set up. They can then be changed at a later date if you decide to upgrade the electrical supply.

If it is a clear site that the machine is going into, always go for a higher rated fuse so that you get the most out of the machine. This applies to multi power machines and will not apply to some glasswashers that only come with a 13Amp supply.

Water Supply for the Glass washer or Dishwasher

The ideal senario is that your new machine will have a high pressure (2-5 Bar), hot water feed going into it. It would then require less time and energy to heat, especially between cycles when you are at your busiest. This is not always the case as hot water usually comes from a boiler and the pressure is low.

The water feed into the machine can also determine how the rinse arms rotate during the final rinse of each cycle, although this may be irrelevant on machines with an air gap (a break in the water to prevent backflow of water from machine into the water mains). These machines will have an inbuilt boost pump to allow for this.

You can test the water pressure with a pressure tester that can be bought online, or speak to your plumber. Alternatively, if you turn on a water tap that is on the same plumbing as the dishwasher water feed, then normally you can tell if there is good pressure present or not. Always try your hot and cold taps.

This is where there is normally a trade off. For example, take these two dishwashers:

1. Low hot water pressure - Dishwasher would need a rinse booster pump but may only need to be plugged into an electrical socket with a 3-pin 13Amp plug.

2. Good cold water pressure - Dishwasher would not need a rinse booster pump, but would work better on 25Amp or 32Amp hard wire plug (with 6mm twin and earth cable)

Choosing between these two machines may then come down to price.

Water hardness may be an issue depending on where in the UK your premises are located. You will most likely have an idea already of whether or not you need a water softener with your machine. If you are in doubt you can ask your local water authority. Also, there are normally tell tale signs in your kettle or water urn. If the water in your area is hard, there will be a white scale build up in and around the element in the kettle or urn.

If this is the case, then you will need a water softener with your machine. Most warewashers, usually with the exception of small glasswashers can be supplied with integral/built in water softeners. Otherwise you will have to purchase a stand alone water softner.

You will soon be able to buy water hardness testers from our site.

Dishwasher with a Drain Pump? (Waste Water Outlet)

Does your existing machine drain away when the stand pipe (plug) is pulled out or do you have to press a button to activate the drain pump?

If it’s with a drain pump, make sure the new machine you order has a drain pump. If not fitted as standard, then it will be available as an option.

The other option is to mount it on a stand if you have the height available. The picture on the left shows a high plumbing waste stand pipe - the machine going in this space would need a drain pump.

If you do not have an existing commercial glasswasher or dishwasher, then consider that the outlet for the waste will come out at the bottom of the machine at its lowest point. When the machine is in position, will this be above or below the height of the waste pipe that the drain hose has to go into?

Remember: water cannot flow uphill unless helped by a drain pump!

Who will be there to help move or lift the machine?

Similar to checking access, plan the route that the machine will take to get to its destination. Who will be available to help if this means that an old glasswasher has to be lifted over a bar, and the new one has to be lifted over it too before being installed? In our time, we have seen all sorts of crazy scenarios. One that jumps to mind is the time a new passthrough dishwasher was ordered and it was assumed because the new one would fit through the door to the commercial kitchen, then the old one would be removed without any hassle.

However, the old dishwasher had a side box on it that was semi hidden because of the inlet tabling, and the salesman had failed to notice and account for it. It was also rusted on so couldn’t be removed on site. The end result was that the industrial passthrough dishwasher had to be lifted horizontally and fitted through the serving hatch which was wider than the door, but 4 feet off the ground!! That was not a 1 man job let us assure you!

Are you replacing a frontloading dishwasher with a hood type dishwasher?

If so, measure out the available width and especially the height above where the old machine sits. Shelving may have to be removed or relocated to accommodate the added height of the hood of the new dishwasher when it is open.

There may be more steam emitted from your new passthrough dishwasher and so a canopy may have to be fitted above where the machine will sit. The Hobart Bar Aid 900(s) comes with a 4 sided hood which contains the steam and in doing so does away with the need for a canopy.

Ask yourself - why are you upgrading? - Is your old machine broken, are you building an extension, do you anticipate greater volume that the old one couldn't cope with. Asking yourself these questions will help you to make a better decision about which machine is right for you.

Remember: Keeping your old one as back up is an option if it was working and you have room to store it.

If this all seems too much, please give us a call and we will help to talk you through the process.