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Buy a New Refrigerated Van or Convert An Old One?

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If you run a new transportation business that needs refrigerated vehicles, then you’re likely estimating the price of a new refrigerated van and considering if it would be less expensive to convert an older van into a refrigerated one. Will it allow you to offer the same level of service as a new one if it is more reasonably priced? In the short term, the answer to the first question is undoubted “yes” but the second question’s resolution is in doubt.


You must choose whether to install a new or used refrigeration system when converting an existing van. Although a secondhand refrigeration system would initially cost less, you might have to fix it more frequently. Although a new refrigeration system may cost more, you can anticipate that it will last longer. You will ultimately get what you paid for. You will also require an insulation system for your vehicle in addition to refrigeration equipment, which is an additional expense.


How Much Does It Cost? 

The price of a new reefer van can range from $30,000 to $60,000 depending on the truck’s capacity, while the price of converting an old vehicle could range from $10,000 to $20,000 depending on the unit you buy and the service company you select to install it.


1. How Much Does It Cost to Buy a Van Refrigeration System?

A fantastic approach to guarantee that your items stay fresh throughout transit is to add refrigeration to a van. Reefer units, often known as van refrigeration systems, can be expensive but are worthwhile. You can save a lot of money by installing a reefer unit in your present van rather than purchasing a new chilled van. The price of your reefer unit will vary depending on its model and whether it is new or secondhand.

Any type of refrigeration system you buy will set you back many thousand dollars. It will cost less upfront to buy a used reefer unit. However, as time passes, you might need more repairs. These expenses can easily surpass the cost of a brand-new van refrigeration system as they build up.

Van reefer units can cost as much as $10,000 new. Although it may seem like a large investment, these systems can perform better and endure longer than used ones.

New refrigeration equipment is significantly more expensive than secondhand equipment. However, once installed, they often require fewer repairs. Energy efficiency is another appealing feature of new van reefer units. Your vehicle could benefit from a new refrigeration system that can help you save money on petrol. Older, used models could demand more power to operate.



2. How Much Does It Cost to Insulate Your Refrigerated Van?

Your van might need to get insulated if reefer units are to operate properly. A refrigerated van is already insulated and fitted with a reefer unit when you purchase it. An ordinary van requires some additional modifications to become a refrigerated van. Even with the additional cost of insulation, the project’s overall cost may be less than buying a vehicle with a refrigerator.

Utilizing a specialized service to insulate your car won’t set you back too much money. Self-insulating your van may be less expensive but less effective. It’s crucial to properly insulate your refrigerated vehicle so you can control the temperature. Insulation should only cost a fraction of the total cost of adding refrigeration to your van, which can be around $20,000.

The size of your refrigerated vehicle and the provider you choose will determine how much it will cost to insulate it.



3. How Much Does It Cost to Install a Van Refrigeration System?

The cost of installing a reefer unit shouldn’t be as high as the cost of purchasing one. Particularly when carried out by trained experts, the procedure is fairly quick. Utilizing an experienced company to add refrigeration to a van is worthwhile. You can then have a van that is properly refrigerated and fulfills your company’s needs.

Although installation costs can vary, they shouldn’t even come close to the reefer unit’s price. It is less expensive to install refrigeration in your vehicle when skilled experts do the work.



4. How to Make Adding Refrigeration to a Van Cost Less

Instead of purchasing a refrigerated van, there are several good reasons to add refrigeration to an existing van. The main one is to reduce costs. The cost of purchasing a pre-cooled van can be thousands of dollars higher than the cost of converting your current van. More advice on how to cut costs when adding refrigeration to your van is provided below.

First, purchase the refrigeration system and the van separately. While that may seem like more work, it really can be the best option. Refrigerated vans can be extremely expensive, especially when bought new.

Work with an auto shop you can trust. Mechanics specializing in refrigeration can advise you on the best, most affordable ways to add refrigeration to your van. Finally, the newer the reefer unit, the better.



5. Different Types of Refrigerated Vans

The construction of refrigerated vehicles varies. Yes, they all have the same purpose—keeping medicines and food items chilled while being transported—but different vans do this in different ways. What should you check out while considering buying a freezer van?

Refrigerated vans come in four basic varieties: insulation alone, chiller conversion, semi-freezer, and full-freezer. What particular things you transport and how long it takes to send those items may determine the kind you need for your firm.


● Insulation-Only Van

Companies that transport non-perishable goods often use insulated vans. Insulation-only vans have 50mm of insulation, so this gives them more flexibility. This type of refrigerated truck does not have a refrigeration facility and is not suitable for transporting perishable goods such as food or medicine.


● Chiller Van

The same 50 mm thick insulating liner is used on top of the refrigerator to create a cart that rebuilds the cooler. This allows you to reach temperatures from 0 °C to 8 °C. They are perfect for different business types.


Semi-Freezer Van

When transporting frozen products, a vehicle that can handle low temperatures is required. The semi-freezer van is fitted with thicker 75 mm insulation in the cargo area. They can keep a constant temperature of 15 degrees Celsius.


Full-Freezer Van

Refrigerated conversion carts can combine 75mm insulation of semi-refrigerated carts with reverse cycle, hot gas defrost, or reverse cycle. To improve temperature maintenance up to 20 °C, these vehicles have reinforced rear and side doors.

What kind of company do they use and what are the benefits? Many industries use refrigerated trucks. They do this for many reasons. These are the most common industries we work with.


Different types of refrigerated vans can be used in different kinds of businesses:


○ Ice Cream Vendors

Ice cream requires refrigeration. Fully refrigerated conversion trailers are often used to transport inventory.


○ Florist

Flowers should be stored at a temperature of 5-7 degrees Celsius to preserve freshness during transportation. These things are important for short-lived products.


○ Pharmaceuticals

As you can see, the transportation of medicines and other medical supplies is very important. Conditions must be perfect. All vehicles transporting pharmaceuticals should have a backup power system.


○ Meat, Poultry, Fish, Milk, and Dairy

The ideal temperature for food varies, but there are guidelines to keep it from spoiling or becoming inedible. Click here for details.

Kingclima is a professional vehicle cooling solution provider. We offer refrigeration unit and air conditioner for trucks, vans, trailers, and RVs. Being a leading manufacturer of vehicle referigeration unit and AC unit, Kingclima has dived into the industry for 20 years. Trucst Kingclima, follow the market trend, make perfect cooling solution.
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