No matter your use for a refrigerated van, you need to pick one for your business that will protect the cargo you're carrying, while not overspending on features you might not necessarily need. Some vans are for carrying very delicate items like pharmaceuticals and frozen goods, whereas others just need to keep things relatively cool, like flowers and plants. Note a few tips for choosing a refrigerated van for your business so you know you get the right one.
1. Fully automated controls
When shipping items that are legally required to stay at a certain temperature during transport, or those that may be otherwise ruined if they do not maintain a correct temperature, you want to invest in a van with fully automated controls. These will read the internal temperature of the cargo area and even read the outside temperature, and adjust the fan and cooling unit automatically. This type of cooling is usually more involved than just having a thermostat in the back, as a unit that analyzes the outside temperature and changes in the internal temperature can anticipate a change and adjust accordingly, before the temperature actually drops too low or it becomes too warm in the cargo area.
2. Multi compartments
You may legally need to keep certain items separate when you're transporting them; meat and poultry may need to stay separate from produce, as an example. Certain medicines or pharmaceutical products may also need to stay separated during transit. Consider if you might invest in a van with multi compartments and with separate temperature settings for each compartment. This can make it easier to transport various products than trying to fit the van with different coolers and containers on your own, and also ensure the temperature remains constant in each compartment.
Some vans are not truly temperature controlled but may simply be insulated, with a manual fan or cooling unit you turn on and off yourself. These are not typically acceptable for items that need to maintain a constant temperature, but note if they would be all you need for transporting flowers and plants. Also, you might be transporting freezers or coolers you purchase separately such as when you sell ice cream or refreshments, and don't need exact temperature control. Check if the cargo area is insulated in one long, single piece, usually something that is sprayed into the area, versus having separate pieces installed. The long, single piece typically offers more insulating properties as it won't allow air in from cracks between pieces.