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Why Serial Numbers Matter in Foodservice

A montage of Commercial Kitchen Equipment Serial Number
By JR Weber – Director of Sales

If you have ever called a service company to come and repair a piece of foodservice equipment, then you may well have witnessed the technician going to great lengths to find the serial number often found on a well-hidden small metal plate.

Have you ever wondered why the technician goes to such lengths to find that number? If so, please read on.

How a Serial Number Helps with Repairs and Equipment Maintenance

Just like a motor vehicle, a serial number helps to identify lots of important information about your unit. This information includes:

1. Whether the unit is still covered by manufacturer warranty. Obviously, this is important because any issue your piece of equipment has that happened through normal use may well be repaired wholly or partially on the manufacturer’s dime.

2. It is not uncommon that there are several versions of a model of equipment. The serial number identifies the exact components of your unit which is vital to finding the right replacement parts if needed.

3. Occasionally components are updated or redesigned to improve the performance or reliability of a unit. Your serial number identifies the history of your unit and whether your unit is eligible for an upgrade.

4. Software is becoming a bigger and bigger component of modern foodservice equipment, especially in combi-ovens. Knowing which version of software your unit should have and the right method of updating to that version is critical to getting the most out of your unit. You guessed it; the serial number helps here also.

General Parts Group Tracks Your Service History

On top of this, if you have an ongoing relationship with your service company then they may well also use the serial number for identification purposes. General Parts Group records all equipment serial numbers it works on. This builds up a service history that can be referenced for future repair and is even shared with manufacturers to aid future equipment design. For our clients who are thinking of replacing equipment, our data can help with return-on-investment modeling.

Lastly, General Parts, like many service companies has planned maintenance programs with many of its customers. Not all programs are the same, many are customized by our client allowing for equipment to be excluded or frequency to be adjusted by equipment type. The serial number helps us track this accurately. Phew, the humble serial number, small but so powerful.

If you are interested in learning more about the power of data collection or if you are an existing customer and want access to your existing data, then please reach out to our sales team at gpsales@generalparts.com